Manitex International has seen a significant rise in 2010 sales thanks to an expansion programme and cost controls.

Net revenue for the fourth quarter, ending 31 December, was US$29.5 million, representing a 98% increase from $14.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2009. The figure also reflected a rise of $4.7 million or 19% from the third quarter of 2010 for the USA-based boom truck and rough terrain crane manufacturer.

Excluding the impact of acquisitions and new operations, net revenues increased 38% from the previous year's comparable period.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) for the fourth quarter was $2.9 million, or 9.6% of sales, the highest yet achieved by the company. This was compared to $0.4 million or 2.9% for the fourth quarter of 2009. Gross profit of $7.7 million, or 25.9% of sales was an improvement of 23.1% on the fourth quarter of 2009.

"We are encouraged by the significant improvement in our performance in 2010 rebounding from the severe conditions of 2009," said David Langevin, Manitex chairman and chief executive officer. "Throughout this downturn, we have driven for expansion of our business and financial results by embarking on a broad international diversification programme combined with the addition to our portfolio of several well established and respected product lines through acquisitions.

"By combining these measures with cost controls and a product emphasis on specialized lifting equipment we are able to report a significant improvement in our top line sales and record EBITDA margins," Langevin concluded.

Net revenues of $29.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2010 increased $14.6 million or 98% over the fourth quarter of 2009. Acquisitions, the CVS Ferrari operating agreement and new operations started in 2010 contributed $9 million to this increase with the balance of $5.6 million representing organic growth, equal to 38%, said the company. The increase in organic revenues reflected revenue increases in all major product categories, with cranes up 28%, material handling up 46% and equipment distribution up 100%.

Crane sales continue to reflect strong demand from new product introductions for the specialty energy and utility markets in both the US and internationally, said the company.

Gross profit of $7.7 million and gross margin of 25.9% were $4.2 million and 280 basis points, respectively, above the fourth quarter of 2009.

"For the remainder of the year, we expect our strategy of serving specialty markets, such as, energy, railroads, and utilities to continue to serve us well and lead to double digit growth in sales on a year-over-year comparison in our existing businesses. Additionally we expect incremental sales from our CVS operating agreement," said a Manitex spokesman.

"Our expectations are for a slow recovery in the overall economy. However, with the improving economy we are experiencing increases in pricing for components and raw materials and we will continue to be diligent in working with our suppliers to control these costs. We should also be able to see improvements in cost absorption that comes with increases in our volume. In conclusion, our overall message is that our business model puts us on firm footing as we enter 2011 and that we expect to continue to implement this strategy and build upon it as the economy improves," the spokesman added.

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