MEDFORD, OR -- (Marketwire) -- 02/20/13 -- Lithia Motors, Inc. (NYSE: LAD) today reported the highest fourth quarter adjusted net income in Company history, and increased earnings 52% for the fourth quarter 2012 over the prior year period.
2012 fourth quarter adjusted income from continuing operations was $19.3 million, or $0.74 per diluted share. This compares to a 2011 fourth quarter adjusted income from continuing operations of $12.7 million, or $0.48 per diluted share.
Unadjusted net income from continuing operations for the fourth quarter of 2012 was $19.7 million or $0.76 per diluted share, compared to $16.0 million or $0.61 per diluted share for 2011. As shown in the attached non-GAAP reconciliation tables, the 2012 fourth quarter adjusted income from continuing operations is reduced to exclude a benefit of $0.02 per share for a non-core tax attribute. The 2011 fourth quarter adjusted results from continuing operations exclude a benefit of $0.15 per share gain on the sale of real estate offset by a non-core reserve adjustment charge of $0.02 per share.
Fourth Quarter-over-Quarter Operating Highlights:
•New vehicle same store sales increased 31% •Used vehicle retail same store sales increased 20% •Service, body and parts same store sales increased 8% •SG&A expense as a percentage of gross profit was 70%
Fourth quarter 2012 revenue from continuing operations increased $182.0 million, or 26%, to $877.4 million from $695.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2011.
Full Year-over-Year Operating Highlights:
•New vehicle same store sales increased 30% •Used vehicle retail same store sales increased 21% •Service, body and parts same store sales increased 7% •Adjusted SG&A expense as a percentage of gross profit was 69%
For the full year of 2012, revenue from continuing operations increased 26% to $3.3 billion from $2.6 billion in 2011.
"We grew total same store revenue 23% in 2012," said Bryan DeBoer, President and CEO. "This is on top of total same store revenue increases of 22% in 2011 and 18% in 2010. Most automotive analysts believe a multi-year recovery in auto sales remains ahead of us, and many of the western markets we do business in are still significantly below peak registration levels experienced in 2005 and 2006. Our store leaders continue to challenge their teams and remain driven to improve store performance in 2013 and beyond."
For the full year of 2012, adjusted net income from continuing operations increased 52% to $2.96 per diluted share compared to $1.95 per diluted share for the full year 2011. Unadjusted, for the full year of 2012, net income from continuing operations was $3.03 per diluted share, compared to $2.07 per diluted share for the full year of 2011.
Chris Holzshu, SVP and CFO, said, "We finished 2012 with full year adjusted SG&A expense as a percentage of gross profit of 69.4%. This is a record result and finishing below 70% is a milestone we have been pursuing for the past two years. For the full year, incremental throughput, or the percentage of additional same store gross profit dollars that we retain after deducting selling costs, was 51%. Our stores remain focused on maintaining incremental throughput above 50%, which will reduce our SG&A expense as a percentage of gross profit in 2013. We believe SG&A expense as a percentage of gross profit can be in the high 60 percent range with improved sales."
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