Emerson Reports Second Quarter 2013 Results

  • Sales increased slightly to $6.0 billion, as underlying sales grew 2 percent
  • EBIT margin expansion of 20 basis points to 14.9 percent
  • Earnings per share increased 4 percent to $0.77

ST. LOUIS, May 7, 2013 – Emerson (NYSE: EMR) today announced that net sales for the second quarter ended March 31, 2013, increased 1 percent from the prior year to $6.0 billion. Underlying sales grew 2 percent as unfavorable currency translation and divestitures together deducted 1 percent, with the U.S. up 1 percent, Asia up 2 percent, and Europe down 3 percent.  Sales reflected mixed results across end markets and geographies, but slow economic growth overall as business investment stalled, particularly in mature markets.  EBIT margin of 14.9 percent improved 20 basis points, benefiting primarily from cost containment.  Pretax margin expanded 10 basis points to 13.9 percent.  Earnings per share of $0.77 increased 4 percent from the prior year.

"Economies around the world are struggling for momentum," said Chairman and Chief Executive Officer David N. Farr.  "Demand slowed in the second half of the quarter as overall global business confidence deteriorated.  We do not see a catalyst to economic growth over the next six to nine months.  In light of the current business environment, I was pleased with our underlying growth, especially in emerging markets, which grew 6 percent.  We will continue to target investment in growing regions, while remaining cautious in mature markets until the economy accelerates."

Operating cash flow increased 6 percent to $597 million, driven primarily by higher earnings.  Working capital performance improved from a slow start to the year, with a 140 basis point reduction from the first quarter to 18.6 percent of sales.  Capital expenditures of $120 million were lower than the prior year by $37 million, contributing to free cash flow growth of 18 percent to $477 million. Year-to-date cash generation has been strong, with operating cash flow up 29 percent and free cash flow up 51 percent compared to the prior year.

"Despite the slow economic climate, we continue to expect a record year for operating cash flow," Farr said.  "With very strong cash generation through the second quarter compared to the first half of 2012, we are well positioned to achieve that target.  Our priority this year remains returning at least 60 percent of operating cash flow to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases.  Supporting this commitment, later today we expect the Board of Directors to approve a new program authorizing the repurchase of 70 million shares over the next several years."

Business Segment Highlights
Process Management sales grew 8 percent, as global oil and gas, chemical, and power industry investment remained solid.  Underlying sales increased 9 percent with currency translation deducting 1 percent, led by 10 percent growth in the systems and solutions business.  By region, 14 percent growth in Asia benefited from strong project activity in Australia; investment in the North Sea region and Russia drove 7 percent growth in Europe; and the U.S. decreased 1 percent, as higher natural gas inventories contributed to slower investment.  Segment margin of 20.0 percent increased 170 basis points, as volume leverage, cost containment, and currency gains offset unfavorable mix from lower maintenance investment by customers.  Growth is expected to remain stable in the near term despite difficult comparisons and moderating end markets, particularly North America.

Industrial Automation reported and underlying sales decreased 6 percent, with the U.S. down 1 percent, Europe down 15 percent, and Asia down 3 percent, as end markets for global capital goods remained under pressure.  The power generating alternators and industrial motors and electrical drives businesses were particularly weak, partially offset by strength in the hermetic motors business which was driven by HVAC compressor demand.  Segment margin of 15.4 percent decreased 40 basis points, as cost containment actions partially offset volume deleverage.  Demand for industrial goods is expected to remain challenging in the second half of 2013, particularly in Europe.

Network Power reported and underlying sales declined 4 percent, with U.S. underlying sales down 2 percent, Asia down 6 percent, and Europe down 3 percent, as weakness in information technology and telecommunications end markets persisted.  The embedded computing and power business declined at a double-digit rate, reflecting weak and volatile demand for technology equipment and mobile devices, and continued product line rationalization.  Underlying sales declined slightly in the network power systems business, as global investment in data center and telecommunications infrastructure remained sluggish, especially in Europe.  Segment margin declined 110 basis points to 7.5 percent, primarily driven by volume deleverage and higher other costs.  Near term end market demand is expected to reflect the uncertainty and caution in the broader macroeconomic environment.

Climate Technologies reported and underlying sales grew 7 percent, as residential air conditioning markets reflected strong demand and comparisons eased.  By geography, U.S. and Europe underlying sales increased 8 percent and Asia grew 4 percent.  The U.S. residential air conditioning business was particularly strong with 23 percent growth, benefiting from improving residential construction and easier comparisons.  Commercial air conditioning and refrigeration demand remained soft, with the transportation business particularly weak.  Segment margin of 17.7 percent improved 60 basis points, as volume leverage and cost containment offset unfavorable mix from lower-margin residential growth.  Industry trends suggest slower growth in the near term, with moderating residential air conditioning growth and continued soft demand in commercial air conditioning and refrigeration markets.

Commercial & Residential Solutions sales declined 4 percent, reflecting a 6 percent deduction from the Knaack business divestiture.  Underlying sales grew 2 percent, benefiting from a 5 percent increase in the U.S., which was led by the residential storage business.  Segment margin expanded 30 basis points to 21.3 percent, primarily due to cost reductions and the divestiture mix benefit.  Modest growth is expected to continue in North America residential end markets in the near term.

Outlook
After a weaker than expected February and March, orders in April continued to trend downward, reflecting further deterioration in business confidence.  There is no clear catalyst to improve global economic growth over the next six to nine months.  Based on the current business environment, reported and underlying sales growth is now expected to be only 1.5 to 2.5 percent, with EBIT and pretax margin approximately equal to the prior year.  Earnings per share are expected to be between $3.48 and $3.58, 5 cents lower than previous estimates and up 3 to 6 percent over last year.  (Prior year comparisons exclude the impact of the goodwill impairment in 2012.)

Upcoming Investor Events
Today at 2 p.m. ET, Emerson management will discuss the second quarter results during a conference call.  Interested parties may listen to the live conference call via the Internet by visiting Emerson's website at www.Emerson.com/financial and completing a brief registration form.  A replay of the conference call will remain available for approximately three months.

On Monday, May 20, 2013, Emerson Chairman and Chief Executive Officer David N. Farr will speak at the Electrical Products Group Conference in Longboat Key, Florida, at 10:45 a.m. ET, and an updated outlook by segment will be provided.  The presentation will be posted on Emerson's website at www.Emerson.com/financial at the time of the event and remain available for approximately three months.
 
Forward-Looking and Cautionary Statements
Statements in this Current Report on Form 8-K that are not strictly historical may be “forward-looking” statements, which involve risks and uncertainties, and Emerson undertakes no obligation to update any such statements to reflect later developments.  These risks and uncertainties include economic and currency conditions, market demand, pricing, protection of intellectual property, and competitive and technological factors, among others, as set forth in the Company's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent reports filed with the SEC.

View Q2 2013 Financial Tables

Media Contact: Mark Polzin (314) 982-1758