MELVILLE, N.Y., Aug 31, 2004 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- The Hain Celestial Group (HAIN), the leading natural and organic food company, today announced results for the Fiscal 2004 fourth quarter and full year ended June 30, 2004. Hain Celestial reported net income of $5.1 million, or $0.14 per share in the fourth quarter this year, compared with net income of $6.8 million, or $0.19 per share in the prior year's comparable quarter. For the Fiscal 2004 full year, Hain Celestial reported net income of $27.0 million, or $0.74 per share, compared with $27.5 million, or $0.79 per share in the prior year.
Fourth quarter net sales grew 17% to $137.4 million, compared with net sales of $117.8 million in the prior year period. For the Fiscal 2004 full year, net sales grew to $544.1 million, a 17% increase over prior year sales of $466.5 million.
Irwin Simon, President and Chief Executive Officer, said, "We are pleased with the strong 17% sales growth we achieved in the fourth quarter, and similarly pleased to see the same 17% increase in net sales for the full year, a significant increase in a challenging year. We saw growth across our business units with standout results from Snacks, Canada and Europe, continued growth from Earth's Best(R), and renewed growth from our Westsoy(R) non-dairy brand. In addition, our new CarbFit(TM) brands have continued to become more familiar to our consumers and have become a balanced complement to our existing portfolio of healthy and natural foods."
"Looking ahead, our initiative to adjust prices upward across certain of our U.S. businesses is moving forward according to plan in the current first quarter. We are pleased with the performance of our recent acquisitions, the Ethnic Gourmet(R) and Rosetto(R) frozen food brands, and the JASON Natural Products whole body care products business. We are continuing to fold them into the Hain Celestial family of brands and are excited about their future. We are also delighted to announce that following the success in other regions of our McVeggie Burger manufactured exclusively for McDonald's by Yves Veggie Cuisine, McDonald's will begin a 50-store test of the McVeggie Burger in Manhattan in September."
Mr. Simon concluded, "As we look forward to our Fiscal 2005, we are providing earnings guidance for the full year of $0.92 -- $1.01 per share on revenues of $650 to $670 million." The Company no longer provides shorter-term, quarterly guidance, a practice it discontinued a year ago.
Management will host a conference call to discuss its fourth quarter and full year results at 4:30 p.m. EDT today, August 31, 2004. The call may be accessed through the Investor Relations section of the Hain Celestial website at http://www.hain-celestial.com. Please log in to the call at least fifteen minutes ahead of time to allow time for registration. A replay of the call will be available on the same section of the Hain Celestial website until September 30, 2004.
About The Hain Celestial Group
The Hain Celestial Group, headquartered in Melville, NY, is a natural, specialty and snack food and body care company. The Company is a leader in 13 of the top 15 natural food categories, with such well-known natural food brands as Celestial Seasonings(R) teas, Walnut Acres(R), Hain Pure Foods(R), CarbFit(TM), Westbrae(R), Westsoy(R), Rice Dream(R), Soy Dream(R), Imagine(R), Ethnic Gourmet(R), Rosetto(R), Arrowhead Mills(R), Health Valley(R), Breadshop's(R), Casbah(R), Garden of Eatin(R), Terra Chips(R), Yves Veggie Cuisine(R), The Good Dog(R), The Good Slice(R), DeBoles(R), Lima(R), Biomarche(R), Grains Noirs(R), Natumi(R), Milkfree(R), Earth's Best(R), and Nile Spice(R). The Company's principal specialty product lines include Hollywood(R) cooking oils, Estee(R) sugar-free products, Kineret(R) kosher foods, Boston Better Snacks(R), and Alba Foods(R). The Company's Whole Body Care brands primarily consists of JASON Natural Products. The Hain Celestial Group's website can be found at http://www.hain-celestial.com.
Statements made in this Press Release that are estimates of past or future performance are based on a number of factors, some of which are outside of the Company's control. Statements made in this Press Release that state the intentions, beliefs, expectations or predictions of The Hain Celestial Group and its management for the future are forward-looking statements. It is important to note that actual results could differ materially from those projected in such forward-looking statements. Information concerning factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements is contained from time to time in filings of The Hain Celestial Group with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Copies of these filings may be obtained by contacting The Hain Celestial Group or the SEC.