Mannatech, Incorporated, a leading developer and provider of proprietary nutritional supplements, weight management products and skin care solutions, today reported a net loss of $4.8 million or $0.18 per diluted share for the first quarter ending March 31, 2009, compared to a net loss of $2.3 million or $0.09 per diluted share for the first quarter of 2008. Operating results were negatively impacted by higher commissions paid while in transition to a new lower priced business builder pack and continuing unfavorable foreign currency exchange.
First quarter net sales for 2009 were $70.7 million, a decrease of 22.7%, compared to $91.5 million in the first quarter of 2008. The sales decline was largely due to a 27.6% decrease in North American sales compared to the first quarter of 2008. International sales decreased 14.3% for the first quarter of 2009 compared to the first quarter of 2008 partially due to the negative impact of a stronger U.S. dollar in the first quarter compared to the first quarter of 2008. The stronger U.S. dollar negatively impacted sales by $4.3 million excluding South Africa.
Wayne Badovinus, Mannatech's president and CEO commented, "The weakened global economy continues to have an impact on sales, and our earnings were lower due to higher commission payouts as we transitioned to a reduced pack size and price for business builders as well as unfavorable foreign currency exchange results. However, we experienced considerably higher recruiting numbers for the first quarter of 2009. Recruiting momentum started in the fourth quarter of 2008 with the launch of our fat loss product, Osolean powder. The launch of our $499 reduced price pack in late January has fueled strong recruiting throughout the first quarter and has continued into the second quarter."
Mr. Badovinus continued, "New independent Associates added in the first quarter of 2009 increased 5.1% compared to the first quarter of 2008, and was 6.1% higher than the fourth quarter of 2008. Further evidence of our improvement in recruiting is that domestic pack sales were up 9% in the first quarter of 2009 compared to the first quarter of 2008. We believe we have begun to turn the corner on recruiting."
New independent Associates recruiting totaled 36,465 in the first quarter of 2009, compared to 34,383 new Associates added in the fourth quarter of 2008 and 28,838 new Associates added in the third quarter of 2008. Total independent Associate and Member count based on a 12-month trailing period was 527,000 for the first quarter of 2009 as compared to 570,000 for the first quarter of 2008.
Mannatech will hold a conference call and webcast to discuss this announcement with investors on Thursday, May 7, 2009 at 9:00 a.m. Central Daylight Time, 10:00 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time. Investors may listen to the call by accessing Mannatech's website at www.mannatech.com.
Mannatech, Incorporated, is a global wellness solutions provider of innovative, high-quality, proprietary dietary supplements, weight management products and skin care solutions sold through independent Associates and Members located in the United States and the international markets of Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, Japan, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, Taiwan, Denmark, Germany, South Africa, and Singapore. For more information please visit www.mannatech.com or www.allaboutmannatech.com.
Please Note: This release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements generally can be identified by use of phrases or terminology such as "intend" or other similar words or the negative of such terminology. Similarly, descriptions of Mannatech's objectives, strategies, plans, goals or targets contained herein are also considered forward-looking statements. Mannatech believes this release should be read in conjunction with all of its filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission and cautions its readers that these forward-looking statements are subject to certain events, risks, uncertainties, and other factors. Some of these factors include, among others, Mannatech's inability to attract and retain Associates and Members, increases in competition, litigation, regulatory changes, and its planned growth into new international markets. Although Mannatech believes that the expectations, statements, and assumptions reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, it cautions readers to always consider all of the risk factors and any other cautionary statements carefully in evaluating each forward-looking statement in this release, as well as those set forth in its latest Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q, and other filings filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, including its current reports on Form 8-K. All of the forward-looking statements contained herein speak only as of the date of this release.