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Innovation Drives Record Growth at Johnson Outdoors for Fiscal 2018

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Dec 7, 2018

Innovation Drives Record Growth at Johnson Outdoors for Fiscal 2018

RACINE, Wis., Dec. 07, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- JOHNSON OUTDOORS INC. (NASDAQ: JOUT), a leading global innovator of outdoor recreation equipment and technology, today announced all-time high revenue and earnings for the second consecutive fiscal year.  Strong marketplace demand for new products in the Company’s core Fishing and Diving brands propelled an 11 percent increase in sales as operating profit grew 38 percent and net income rose 16 percent over the prior fiscal year.  The seasonally slow fourth quarter net sales nearly equaled prior year results.

“Unprecedented growth in our flagship Fishing business has driven record results two years in a row on the strength of revolutionary, consumer driven innovation. Our goal is consistent bigger, better new product success like this across our entire brand portfolio,” said Helen Johnson-Leipold, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

“Importantly, deeper, richer consumer understanding is at the core of everything we do. Going forward, our ability to connect with more consumers in new, more meaningful ways will enable us to fully leverage and maximize investments in digital transformation, marketing sophistication and ecommerce to enhance performance in all segments and channels. Much progress has been made in transforming Johnson Outdoors for future success in a changing marketplace. More work and more investment will be needed to ensure continued sustainable growth and profitability.”  


  • New product success
  • Sustained momentum in Fishing and Diving 
  • Enhanced digital sophistication
  • Strong cash flow and a debt-free balance sheet
  • Increased quarterly dividend to shareholders

Total Company net sales grew 11 percent to $544.3 million versus fiscal 2017 net sales of $490.6 million. New product demand across the Company’s Fishing, Diving and Camping brands more than offset declines in Watercraft Recreation. Key factors in the year-over-year comparison were:

  • Exceptional new product performance fueled double-digit revenue growth in Minn Kota® and Humminbird® brands in all key categories, channels and markets.
  • Continued momentum for award-winning innovation in life-support categories gave a 3 percent boost to SCUBAPRO® brand sales.
  • Growth in Eureka® and Jetboil® brands nearly offset the loss of sales resulting from the divestiture of the non-core Silva brand.
  • Kayak market declines across all segments and channels negatively impacted Watercraft Recreation revenue. 

Operating profit soared to a record-high $63.0 million, a 38 percent increase over $45.6 million in the prior fiscal year, due to significantly higher sales volume and margin improvement year-over-year. Higher volume-related expenses and increased digital marketing expenditures and R&D investment primarily accounted for the year-over-year uptick in operating expense dollars.  As a percent of sales, fiscal 2018 operating expense declined versus fiscal 2017. 

Net income for the fiscal year increased 16 percent to $40.7 million, or $4.05 per diluted share, versus $35.2 million, or $3.51 per diluted share, last fiscal year.  The effective tax rate of 40.3 percent reflects $8.4 million in charges resulting from changes in accounting for taxes prompted by U.S. tax reform legislation enacted during the fiscal year.

Due to the seasonality of the warm-weather outdoor recreation equipment industry, the Company’s fourth quarter results reflect the industry-wide slowing of sales and production.  Total Company net sales in the quarter dipped slightly year-over-year to $91.1 million, a decline of less than 1 percent.  Operating loss was ($2.0 million) in the current year fourth quarter versus ($0.1 million) in the prior fourth quarter, primarily due to continued digital investments. Net loss of ($5.0 million), or ($0.49) per diluted share in the current year quarter compared unfavorably to net income of $0.6 million, or $0.06 per diluted share, in the prior year quarter.

The Company reported cash and short-term investments of $150.6 million as of September 28, 2018, a $40.2 million jump above the prior year, with no debt on its balance sheet. Depreciation and amortization was flat year-over-year at $13.1 million. Capital spending totaled $19.2 million in fiscal 2018 compared with $11.6 million in fiscal 2017.

“Looking ahead to next year, while we expect revenue to grow, recently enacted tariffs are estimated to have a negative impact of $6.0 - $9.0 million on fiscal 2019 operating profit, which includes foreseeable mitigation efforts at this time. In addition, we expect our fiscal 2019 tax rate to decline, reflecting the reduction in the US federal corporate income tax rate,” said David W. Johnson, Chief Financial Officer.   

The Company will host a conference call and audio web cast at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time on Friday, December 7, 2018.  A live listen-only web cast of the conference call may be accessed at Johnson Outdoors’ home page.  A replay of the call will be available for 30 days on the Internet.

About Johnson Outdoors Inc.
JOHNSON OUTDOORS is a leading global innovator of outdoor recreation equipment and technologies that inspire more people to experience the awe of the great outdoors. The company designs, manufactures and markets a portfolio of winning, consumer-preferred brands across four categories: Watercraft Recreation, Fishing, Diving and Camping.  Johnson Outdoors' iconic brands include: Old Town® canoes and kayaks; Ocean Kayak; Carlisle® paddles; Minn Kota® fishing motors, batteries and anchors; Cannon® downriggers; Humminbird® marine electronics and charts; SCUBAPRO® dive equipment; Jetboil® outdoor cooking systems; and, Eureka!® camping and hiking equipment. 

Visit Johnson Outdoors at

Safe Harbor Statement
Certain matters discussed in this press release are “forward-looking statements,” intended to qualify for the safe harbors from liability established by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Statements other than statements of historical fact are considered forward-looking statements. These statements may be identified by the use of forward-looking words or phrases such as “anticipate,’’ “believe,’’ “confident,” “could,’’ “expect,’’ “intend,’’ “may,’’ “planned,’’ “potential,’’ “should,’’ “will,’’ “would’’ or the negative of those terms or other words of similar meaning. Such forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results or outcomes to differ materially from those currently anticipated.  Factors that could affect actual results or outcomes include the matters described under the caption “Risk Factors” in Item 1A of the Company’s Form 10-K which will be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on December 7, 2018 and the following:  changes in economic conditions, consumer confidence levels and discretionary spending patterns in key markets; uncertainties stemming from changes in US trade policies, tariffs, and the reaction of other countries to such changes; the Company’s success in implementing its strategic plan, including its targeted sales growth platforms, innovation focus and its increasing digital presence; litigation costs related to actions of and disputes with third parties, including competitors; the Company’s continued success in working capital management and cost-structure reductions; the Company’s success in integrating strategic acquisitions; the risk of future writedowns of goodwill or other long-lived assets; the ability of the Company's customers to meet payment obligations; movements in foreign currencies, interest rates or commodity costs; fluctuations in the prices of raw materials or the availability of raw materials or components used by the Company; any disruptions in the Company's supply chain as a result of material fluctuations in the Company's order volumes and requirements for raw materials and other components necessary to manufacture and produce the Company's products; the success of the Company’s suppliers and customers and the impact of any consolidation in the industries of the Company's suppliers and customers; the ability of the Company to deploy its capital successfully; unanticipated outcomes related to outsourcing certain manufacturing processes; unanticipated outcomes related to litigation matters; and adverse weather conditions. Shareholders, potential investors and other readers are urged to consider these factor"J"s in evaluating the forward-looking statements and are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements included herein are only made as of the date of this filing. The Company assumes no obligation, and disclaims any obligation, to update such forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.

At Johnson Outdoors Inc.  
David Johnson Patricia Penman
VP & Chief Financial Officer VP – Global marketing services & communications
262-631-6600 262-631-6600


(thousands, except per share amounts)          
Operating Results   September 28
    September 29
      September 28
    September 29
Net sales $   91,132   $   91,755     $   544,268   $   490,565  
Cost of sales     51,611       52,923         302,408       279,625  
Gross profit     39,521       38,832         241,860       210,940  
Operating expenses     41,494       38,908         178,839       165,349  
Operating (loss) profit     (1,973 )     (76 )       63,021       45,591  
Interest (income) expense, net     (640 )     (162 )       (963 )     441  
Other expense (income), net     109       (772 )       (4,122 )     (3,060 )
(Loss) income before income taxes     (1,442 )     858         68,106       48,210  
Income tax expense     3,514       269         27,437       13,053  
Net (loss) income $   (4,956 ) $   589     $   40,669   $   35,157  
Diluted average common shares outstanding     10,013       9,943         9,996       9,920  
Diluted net (loss) income per common share $   (0.49 ) $   0.06     $   4.05   $   3.51  
Segment Results          
Net sales:          
Fishing $   54,777   $   51,669     $   391,110   $   328,138  
Camping     7,927       8,681         37,770       37,920  
Watercraft Recreation     7,000       9,678         36,280       48,272  
Diving     21,350       21,829         78,932       76,732  
Other/eliminations     78       (102 )       176       (497 )
Total $   91,132   $   91,755     $   544,268   $   490,565  
Operating profit (loss):          
Fishing $   5,825   $   4,373     $   83,696   $   58,697  
Camping     135       255         1,867       1,946  
Watercraft Recreation     (902 )     394         (1,555 )     2,860  
Diving     1,634       1,379         2,766       1,847  
Other     (8,665 )     (6,477 )       (23,753 )     (19,759 )
Total $   (1,973 ) $   (76 )   $   63,021   $   45,591  
Balance Sheet Information (End of Period)       
Cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments       $   150,591   $   110,417  
Accounts receivable, net           40,866       46,814  
Inventories, net           88,864       79,148  
Total current assets           285,694       240,849  
Total assets           395,936       353,659  
Total current liabilities           92,784       84,077  
Total liabilities           116,739       110,655  
Shareholders’ equity           279,197       243,004  


Source: Johnson Outdoors Inc.