Gehl reports record fourth-quarter sales

With record fourth-quarter sales, Gehl Company completed a record year reporting $486.2 million in net sales for 2006, an increase of 9 percent from 2005. The company attributes this increase in revenue to global market share gains in Gehl’s skid loader product line, strong demand for the telehandler product line and improved product price realization.

Net sales for the fourth quarter ended December 31 for a total of $103.6 million, remaining solid despite softening conditions in certain markets and categories, according to Gehl. Gross margin also improved to 20.9 percent in the fourth quarter of 2006, compared to 19.9 percent in 2005. Decreased manufacturing spending and improved product price realization contributed to this increase.

William D. Gehl, chairman and chief executive officer of Gehl, says the company’s employees produced excellent results with record sales, income and earnings per share from continuing operations. “We gained market share in our two largest product categories, skid loaders and telehandlers, despite the market for North American skid loaders being down from 2005,” Gehl says. “We believe our focus on compact equipment, recent investments in the business and continued focus on cost savings are the right strategies to position the Company for the future.”

The company expects net sales in 2007 to range from $465 million to $495 million, with the full-year operating margin expected to decrease slightly because of incremental operating expense investments in product research and development and information technology projects that total about $4.3 million.

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