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January 30, 2018 6:30 PM, EST

Wabash National 4Q Results Climb

Wabash trailer John Sommers II for Transport Topics

Diversified trailer manufacturer Wabash National Corp. reported gains in fourth-quarter revenue and net income, but had a “reset” for the full-year as both indicators dipped.

Quarterly net income for the period ended Dec. 31 soared to $49.4 million, or 80 cents per diluted share, compared with $23 million, or 36 cents, a year earlier.

Net sales for the quarter increased 18% to $543 million compared with $462 million in the prior-year quarter, the Lafayette, Ind.-based company said.

Full-year net income fell to $111.4 million, or $1.78, compared with $119.4 million, or $1.82, in the 2016 period.

Annual sales dipped to $1.77 billion compared with $1.85 billion in the 2016 period.

“Operationally, following our fifth consecutive record year of profitability in 2016, a small reset was seemingly inevitable at some point,” Wabash CEO Dick Giromini said in a company release.

“Despite a somewhat more challenging year for parts of our core businesses, we are nonetheless proud of the team’s efforts in overcoming many of the headwinds throughout the year, leading us to the strong finish in the fourth quarter that positioned us for new levels of success in 2018.

“New trailer shipments of 55,050 for the year were near the top end of our previous guidance and we begin 2018 with a historically strong backlog of orders totaling $1.2 billion, an increase of 64% compared with the previous quarter,” Giromini said.

Full-year 2017 results included tax benefits associated with both the adjustment of the company’s net deferred income tax liability totaling $19.7 million as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, and the reversal of reserves for uncertain tax positions of $12.6 million.

Full-year results also included charges totaling $9.5 million related to acquisition and integration-related costs for truck body builder Supreme Industries Inc. and early extinguishment of debt incurred with the company’s purchase of a portion of the outstanding convertible senior notes net of gains from the transition and sale of former branch locations.