Crane Co, a provider of products and services to sectors including cash handling in the casino industry, posted a first-quarter net profit of US$105.0 million. Such profit was down 3.1 percent year-on-year, but rose 45.6 percent sequentially, according to a Monday press release.
First-quarter net sales amounted to US$801.1 million, compared to US$779.6 million a year earlier. The firm said the increase in sales “was comprised of a US$36-million, or 5-percent, increase in core sales, partially offset by a US$14-million, or 2-percent, impact from unfavourable foreign exchange.”
First-quarter 2022 operating profit was US$133.6 million, compared to US$140.0 million in the first quarter of 2021. Operating profit margin was 16.7 percent, compared to 18.0 percent in the prior-year period, with the decline “driven primarily by a gain on the sale of real estate in 2021 without a similar gain in 2022, coupled with higher transaction costs in 2022.”
The company announced on Monday a regular quarterly dividend of US$0.47 per share for the second quarter of 2022. The dividend is payable on June 8, to shareholders of record as of the close of business on May 31.
In payment and merchandising technologies, including services for casino operators, Crane saw first-quarter net sales fall 1.5 percent year-on-year, to US$332.6 million. Operating profit in the segment declined by 2.3 percent from a year earlier, to US$84.2 million.
Max Mitchell, the group’s president and chief executive, noted in prepared remarks issued with the results on Monday: “This quarter’s results are another example of how we have positioned our businesses to drive accelerating growth, with strong core sales and orders growth supporting our 15 percent increase in adjusted earnings per share.”
The firm also announced on Monday an agreement to sell Crane Supply, the group’s Canada-based distribution business, for CAD380 million (US$298.4 million).
The group is involved in payment and merchandising technologies; aerospace and electronics; and engineered materials and fluid handling services.
Crane had previously announced the US$360-million sale of its engineered materials business to Mexican firm Grupo Verzatec SA de CV. But the United States’ Department of Justice has filed a complaint that for now blocks the sale, due to antitrust concerns.
In March, Crane announced a plan to separate into two independent, publicly-traded companies. The plan would see Crane Co cover the aerospace and electronics segment, and the process flow technologies business; while the payment and merchandising technologies business would transform into Crane NXT.
In Monday’s statement, Mr Mitchell was cited as saying: “As we move forward, shareholders will see how post-separation, both Crane NXT and Crane Co will be positioned to further accelerate core growth and to create value through their independently optimised capital allocation strategies.”
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