Berks-based EnerSys facing higher lead costs

BERN TWP., Pa. - EnerSys Inc., a global leader in stored energy solutions for industrial applications, announced financial results for its second quarter of fiscal 2018.

Company-wide, sales and operating earnings were up for the quarter, but net earnings were down.   The Bern Township-based company partly blamed the hit to the bottom line on an unfavorable tax impact. 

Operating earnings in the Americas segment gave up almost 11 percent due to commodity pricing pressures. EnerSys said that while higher volume could lead to 25 percent gross margins, prices for lead continue to rise faster than product price increases can absorb increases. 

"Our core business is stable, however, commodity cost increases continue to outpace price increases and the benefits from cost saving initiatives," said David M. Shaffer, the company's president and CEO. "Price increases typically lag behind commodity cost increases by as much as two quarters and lead continues to rise."

The company is projecting non-GAAP net earnings for the third quarter of between $1.12 to $1.16 per share, which excludes an expected $0.04 charge.

EnerSys said its strategy emphasizes two main goals for fiscal years 2018 and 2019. The company said it wants to accelerate growth in its main storage system products and services, and to develop a higher market share in the transportation industry. Pursuing the strategy, the company said, will require more capital approval because of capital constraints in some areas. 

EnerSys also said that mergers and acquisitions are a high priority. The company has identified seven potential targets of acquisition.

On an operating basis, the company saw a worldwide revenue increase of 7.2 percent over the year-ago quarter, and a 1.7 percent increase in earnings. GAAP earnings fell 5.26 percent.

EnerSys manufactures and distributes reserve power and motive power batteries, battery chargers, power equipment, battery accessories and outdoor equipment enclosure solutions to customers worldwide. The company also provides aftermarket and customer support services to its customers in more than 100 countries through its sales and manufacturing locations around the world.

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