Lithia Motors recorded first-quarter earnings that nearly quadrupled the year-ago sum, enjoyed a 45-percent spike in new-vehicle revenue and also notched double-digit increases in used, F&I and service/body/parts revenues.
Lithia’s first-quarter net income from continuing operations came in at $9.1 million, up from $2.3 million in the year-ago period.
Results from both periods exclude non-core charges for asset impairments, disposal gains and reserve adjustments as well as a stock-based compensation tax shortfall. The charges for the most recent period were $0.01 per diluted share and $0.03 for the first quarter of 2010. As such, the GAAP net income for the first quarter came in at $8.7 million, compared to $1.4 million in the year-ago period.
Meanwhile, quarterly revenues from continuing operations hit $603 million, a 31.3-percent year-over-year hike.
Breaking it down, new-vehicle retail revenue climbed 44.8 percent, with used-retail revenue jumping 18.3 percent and used wholesale revenue up 29.5 percent.
F&I revenue showed a 36.1-percent gain with service/body/parts up 11.3 percent.
“Our team delivered another strong performance in the first quarter. Although new-vehicle sales increased 45 percent, we maintained a near 1:1 used-to-new ratio,” stated Sid DeBoer, chairman and chief executive officer for Lithia.
“Service, body and parts sales increased 11 percent despite difficult comparisons due to the Toyota recalls last year,” he pointed out. “The economic recovery is expanding in our Western markets, and our stores are focused on exceeding customer expectations.”
Lithia’s immediately available funds were at $102.9 million when the quarter ended. Comprising this sum were cash of $13.1 million, $37.6 million available via revolving credit facility and unfinanced new-vehicle inventory totaling $52.2 million.
Moving along, the auto group believes its second-quarter earnings will come in somewhere between $0.32 per diluted share and $0.34 per diluted share, with full-year earnings expected to reach between $1.42 per diluted share to $1.50 per diluted share.
DeBoer also offered an update regarding the aftermath of the disasters in Japan.
“Our sincere condolences go out to the people of Japan and for the manufacturers and suppliers with employees impacted by the magnitude of events in March,” he shared.
“While the entire supply chain is focused on minimizing the disruptions associated with the tragedy, it is clear that vehicle supply will be interrupted in the second and third quarters of 2011,”DeBoer continued.
“Our guidance has been updated assuming our best estimate of the impact of these events on our operations. While we hope these assumptions prove to be conservative, the near-term outlook for our manufacturer partners remains uncertain,” he concluded.