Defence sales help loss-making JLG

By Murray Pollok03 November 2009

Oshkosh Corp's access division JLG Industries saw sales fall by 58.2% to US$310.5 million for the division's fourth quarter to 30 September. The fall in access sales in the quarter is actually 70% when JLG's military-related work for Oshkosh is stripped out.

JLG generated $87 million revenues in the quarter from work it is carrying out on Oshkosh's M-ATV military all-terrain vehicle. Much of this work is being carried out at JLG's headquarters in McConnellsburg, where as many as 500 staff are reported to have been hired for M-ATV production.

Oshkosh said sales of new access equipment in North America, Europe, Africa and the Middle East declined by around 80% in the quarter. The division made an operating loss of $45.8 million.

JLG's sales for the year - including the military work - were $1139 million, down 63% on the previous year, and operating losses for the year were $1.1 billion, although this includes an impairment charge in the second quarter of $0.9 billion.

Overall, Oshkosh's sales in the final quarter were down around 20% at $1.48 billion, with operating profits of $118.1 million. The company was buoyed by a 37% increase in defence sales to $2.6 billion for the full year, fueled by large orders from the US military for equipment for Afghanistan. Overall, group revenues fell by 23% to $5.3 billion, and operating profit was $207.8 million (excluding the JLG impairment charge).

Robert G. Bohn, Oshkosh Corporation chairman and chief executive officer, said; "We expect to be solidly profitable in fiscal 2010, led by significant revenue growth in our defense business, which should more than offset anticipated low demand at our construction-related businesses. And, we continue to make investments to position the Company to perform well when the global economy rebounds."

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