CHESTERFIELD, Mo., March 2, 2005 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- Reliv International, Inc. (RELV), an international manufacturer and network marketer of nutritional supplements and other food technology products, today announced its full-year results of operations for 2004, as well as for the three months ended December 31, 2004.
For the year, Reliv achieved a 24 percent increase in net income available to common shareholders, which reached $5.37 million or $0.34 per share basic, $0.31 per share diluted, compared to $4.34 million or $0.29 per share basic, $0.26 per share diluted in 2003. The company also recorded significant growth in net sales during the year increasing 26 percent to $96.98 million as compared to $76.96 million in 2003.
For the three months ended December 31, 2004, Reliv reported a 2 percent gain in net income available to common shareholders to $1.28 million, or $0.08 per share basic, $0.08 per share diluted on net sales of $25.4 million, compared to $20.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2003. The company's fourth quarter 2004 earnings were impacted by certain one-time costs associated with the documentation and testing of internal controls in connection with the Company's adoption of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act ("Act"). Also, the cost of products sold in the fourth quarter were impacted by additional expenses incurred in the start up of the company's manufacturing equipment upgrade installed during the third and fourth quarter of 2004.
To complete the internal control requirements of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, Reliv spent approximately $400,000 more on accounting and related fees during the fourth quarter of 2004 than it did in the prior-year period. Certain of these fees will be one-time costs, related to the initial start-up and documentation of financial reporting controls.
Reliv's 2004 results were paced by continued sales growth in the United States, the company's largest geographic market. For the year, net sales in the United States rose 27 percent. Reliv also reported an 18 percent increase in net sales from its international markets during 2004, led by accelerating results from Canada, Australia and New Zealand, the Philippines and the United Kingdom.
Commenting on the Company's financial results, Robert L. Montgomery, President and Chief Executive Officer of Reliv, said, "Our 2004 results indicate the continued viability of our business model and marketing strategy. We continue to deliver sales growth in our key markets without major product introductions and the fourth quarter of 2004 marked the 11th consecutive quarter that we have reported sales growth of at least 20 percent in the United States. We believe our international markets are capable of producing similar results and we are determined to make it happen."
Mr. Montgomery noted that the company continued to reach new milestones in distributor development, with total Master Affiliates up 26 percent worldwide at the end of 2004, compared to the number who had earned that designation at the end of 2003. He said the company also expects to benefit from a clinical trial program initiated in 2004, designed to establish clinical evidence of the safety and efficacy of Reliv's products. In February, 2005, Reliv announced the results of an independent clinical trial on a newly developed dietary supplement -- Reliv CardioSentials(TM) -- conducted under the direction of Joe Vinson, Ph.D., a Professor of Chemistry at the University of Scranton. Dr. Vinson's summary report stated that the overall effect of the supplement for participants was a significant reduction in their 10-year risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Reliv launched the new product in February, 2005.
About Reliv International:
Reliv International, Inc., based in suburban St. Louis, Missouri, manufactures and distributes several lines of food products, including nutritional and fiber supplements, diet management products, functional foods, sports drink mixes and a line of premium skin care products. Its proprietary product lines include an extensive line of soy-based products. Reliv International's common stock trades on The Nasdaq Stock Market(R) under the symbol RELV.
NOTE: This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act. Actual results could differ materially from those projected or anticipated by the forward-looking statements, which involve a number of risks and uncertainties, including reliance on the Company's network of independent distributors, government regulation of products, manufacturing and marketing, and the risks associated with international expansion. Forward-looking statements in this release include the Company's statement that "We believe our international markets are capable of producing similar results ...." This statement and the other contents of this release should be considered in conjunction with the warnings and cautionary statements contained in Reliv's most recent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Forms 10-K and 10-Q.