Sunbeam Corp. loses 55 cents a share, nearly as much as in 1999 quarter

May 11, 2000|By BLOOMBERG NEWS

BOCA RATON, FLA. - Sunbeam Corp., the largest U.S. maker of small appliances, said yesterday that its first-quarter loss was almost as big as a year ago because of interest expenses after $2.6 billion in acquisitions.

The company had a loss of $59.4 million, or 55 cents a share, compared with $60.7 million, or 60 cents, a year earlier. Sales rose 2.9 percent to $539.1 million.

Sunbeam continues to suffer from costs stemming from fired Chairman Albert Dunlap's 1998 purchases of Coleman Co., First Alert Inc. and Signature Brands USA Inc. The company has had losses for nine consecutive quarters.

First-quarter sales of Coleman barbecue grills offset a decline in sales of Powermate generators, which fell after the year 2000 computer bug did not cause power disruptions.

Jerry Levin, who replaced Dunlap as Sunbeam's CEO, said it is too soon to tell whether second-quarter sales of generators and Coleman camping equipment will be sluggish after big gains related to year 2000 concerns last year.

The company expects to cut debt by about $100 million this quarter when it receives proceeds from the sale of its Eastpak back-pack business.

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