New Look Eyewear Inc.
TSX : BCI

New Look Eyewear Inc.

March 13, 2012 17:00 ET

New Look Eyewear Inc Announces Record Results for the Fourth Quarter and the Year Ended December 31, 2011 and Announces its Quarterly Dividend

MONTREAL, QUÉBEC--(Marketwire - March 13, 2012) - New Look Eyewear Inc. (TSX:BCI) ("New Look"), announced today that revenues for the fourth quarter of 2011, reached $22.1 million, an increase of 13.2% over the corresponding quarter of last year. Revenues from comparable stores for the fourth quarter increased by 8.6%. EBITDA(1) rose to $3.9 million, an increase of 6.8% over last year. Net earnings for the quarter were $1.81 million ($0.18 per share (2)) compared to net earnings of $1.76 million ($0.17 per share) last year. Fourth quarter operating cash flows, before changes in non-cash working capital items, amounted to $0.36 per share (2) compared to $0.35 in the fourth quarter of 2010. The fourth quarter of 2011 consisted of 14 weeks compared to 13 weeks last year.

For the 2011 fiscal year, revenues were $80.2 million, an increase of 13.3% over the last year. Revenues from comparable stores increased by 8.9%. EBITDA reached $13.3 million, an increase of 29.4% over last year. Net earnings for the fiscal year were $6.0 million ($0.59 per share) while adjusted net earnings (3) for 2010 were $4.1 million ($0.41 per share)(3). Operating cash flows, before changes in non-cash working capital items, amounted to $1.28 per share compared to $0.92 per share last year. The 2011 fiscal year consisted of 53 weeks compared to 52 weeks last year.

Martial Gagné, the President of New Look commented: "During the fourth quarter and 2011 as a whole, we achieved superior financial results in a highly competitive market. Our continual reinvestment in the business and focus on providing our clientele high quality products and professional services continue to be the basis of our success. While maintaining solid operations, we increased our presence in both the Province of Québec and the Ottawa region. In 2011, we opened five new stores, two of them through the acquisition and conversion to the New Look banner of existing optical clinics. We will continue to look for suitable acquisition opportunities in 2012."

Following the approval of the results of the fourth quarter, the Board of Directors approved the payment of a dividend of $0.15 per Class A common share payable on March 31st, 2012 to the shareholders of record as of March 23rd, 2012. The dividend was designated as "eligible dividend", i.e. a dividend entitling shareholders who are individuals residing in Canada to a higher dividend tax credit.

SEE TABLE A ATTACHED: CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF EARNINGS

(1)See Table B attached for a definition of EBITDA and a reconciliation of net earnings to EBITDA.

(2)Net earnings and cash flows per share are expressed on a diluted basis. See Table C for the basic amounts of net earnings per share.

(3)See Table C attached for the reconciliation of net earnings to adjusted net earnings.

On March 2, 2010, Benvest New Look Income Fund (formerly TSX:BCI.UN) was converted into a corporation named New Look Eyewear Inc. (TSX:BCI). As of February 29, 2012, New Look had 10,118, 732 Class A common shares issued and outstanding. New Look is a leader in the eye care industry in Eastern Canada operating a network of corporate stores and a laboratory using state-of-the-art technologies.

This press release may contain forward-looking statements that reflect the current views and / or expectations of New Look with respect to its performance, business, and future events. Such statements are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties, and assumptions. Actual results and events may vary.

NEW LOOK EYEWEAR INC
Consolidated Earnings
For the fourth quarter and the year ended December 31, 2011
Compared with the fourth quarter and the year ended December 25, 2010
In thousands of Canadian dollars, except per share or unit amounts
Fourth Quarter Year
2011 2010 2011 2010
14 weeks 13 weeks 53 weeks 52 weeks
$ $ $ $
Revenues 22,096 19,514 80,190 70,778
Materials consumed, net of changes in inventory 4,495 4,610 17,895 16,984
Employee remuneration expense 6,978 5,668 24,945 21,637
Other operating expenses 6,763 5,616 24,114 21,980
18,236 15,894 66,954 60,601
Earnings before the following items 3,860 3,620 13,236 10,177
Depreciation, amortization and impairment of non-financial assets 1,350 1,150 4,313 3,950
Financial expenses, net of interest revenues 89 131 366 405
Cost of conversion to a corporation 853
1,439 1,281 4,679 5,208
Earnings before income taxes 2,421 2,339 8,557 4,969
Income taxes
Current (50 ) (30 ) 6
Deferred 660 599 2,542 1,755
Adjustment related to corporate conversion (8,285 )
610 599 2,512 (6,524 )
Net earnings and comprehensive income 1,811 1,740 6,045 11,493
Net earnings and comprehensive income attributed to:
Non-controlling interest (2 ) (17 ) 21 5
Shareholders of New Look or unitholders of the Fund 1,813 1,757 6,024 11,488
1,811 1,740 6,045 11,493
NEW LOOK EYEWEAR INC
Reconciliation of Net Earning and EBITDA
For the fourth quarter and the year ended December 31, 2011
Compared with the fourth quarter and the year ended December 25, 2010
In thousands of Canadian dollars
Fourth Quarter Year
2011 2010 2011 2010
14 weeks 13 weeks 53 weeks 52 weeks
$ $ $ $
Net earnings 1,811 1,740 6,045 11,493
Depreciation and amortization 1,350 1,150 4,313 3,950
Financial expenses, net of interest revenues 89 131 366 405
Equity-based compensation 35 16 114 88
Net gains on foreign exchange (2 ) 9 (70 ) (6 )
Cost of conversion to a corporation 853
Income taxes 610 599 2,512 (6,524 )
EBITDA 3,893 3,645 13,280 10,259
Variance in $ 248 3,021
Variance in % 6.8% 29.4%
% of revenues 17.6% 18.7% 16.6% 14.5%

New Look defines EBITDA as earnings before financial expenses, net of interest revenues, income taxes, depreciation and amortization. It also excludes any gain or loss on foreign currency translation (except if related to cost of materials), equity-based compensation, and the cost of conversion to a corporation. This definition is not a recognized measure under IFRS and is therefore unlikely to be comparable to similar measures used by other entities. New Look believes that EBITDA is a useful measure financial metric as it assists in determining the ability to generate cash from operations.

NEW LOOK EYEWEAR INC
Reconciliation of Net Earnings and Adjusted Net Earnings
For the fourth quarter and the year ended December 31, 2011
Compared with the fourth quarter and the year ended December 25, 2010
In thousands of Canadian dollars, except amounts per share or unit
Fourth Quarter Year
2011 2010 2011 2010
14 weeks 13 weeks 53 weeks 52 weeks
$ $ $ $
Net earnings attributed to shareholders or unitholders 1,813 1,757 6,024 11,488
Adjustment of income tax related to corporate conversion (8,285 )
Write-off of income tax asset arising from the corporate conversion 207
Cost of conversion to a corporation, net of tax 699
Adjusted net earnings attributable to shareholders or unitholders 1,813 1,757 6,024 4,109
Variance in $ 56 1,915
Variance in % 47 % 47 %
% of revenues 8.2 % 9.0 % 7.5 % 5.8 %
Net earnings per share or unit
Basic 0.18 0.18 0.60 1.15
Diluted 0.18 0.17 0.59 1.14
Adjusted net earnings per share or unit
Basic 0.18 0.18 0.60 0.41
Diluted 0.18 0.17 0.59 0.41

Adjusted net earnings calculated above are not a recognized measure under IFRS and is therefore unlikely to be comparable to similar measures presented by other entities. New Look believes that it currently provides useful information as the adjustment of income tax related to the corporate conversion and the cost of conversion to a corporation, net of tax, are not representative of on-going operations of the Company.

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