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Limoneira breaks even on 70 percent revenue gain

By   /   Monday, June 14th, 2010  /   Comments Off on Limoneira breaks even on 70 percent revenue gain

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Limoneira Co. reported mixed second-quarter results, as revenues jumped 70 percent but shareholders saw no profits.

The Santa Paula-based citrus and avocado grower and real estate developer reported net income of $47,000 applicable to common shareholders after preferred dividends, and a $564,000 non-cash charge for the mark-to-market adjustment on its interest rate swaps.

The company had no per-share earnings. That compares to a net loss of $990,000, or 9 cents per share, in the second quarter last year.

Revenue for the second quarter increased 70 percent to $13.2 million as the company’s main revenue sources — its agricultural and rental operations — grew. Agriculture revenue was up 80 percent to $12.2 million. Rental revenue was $962,000, up from $955,000 in the second quarter last year.

In an earnings release, Limoneira said that the jump in its ag operations revenue was due to higher revenue in all varieties of crops. Lemon sales increased to $7.9 million from $5.3 million in the second quarter of last year. Avocado sales made a strong recovery to $2.7 million from about $100,000 last year, as harvested fruit volumes increased. Navel and Valencia orange and other citrus revenues also increased slightly.

Limoneira’s total costs and expenses increased from $9.3 million last year to $12.2 million in the most recent quarter.

“We are pleased with the progress of our business in the second quarter of fiscal 2010,” Harold Edwards, Limoneira’s president and CEO, said in the earnings release. “Our agribusiness revenue growth benefitted from more favorable harvests in all of our agricultural varieties during the second quarter of 2010. In addition, our improved operating income reflects higher lemon prices, more efficient lemon packaging as well as leverage in our overall sales, general and administrative cost. We expect continued quarterly improvement in our operating results as we enter the back half of fiscal 2010.”

Limoneira made its debut on the Nasdaq stock exchange on May 27, after decades of trading on the pink sheets as a family-owned company. Since its move to the Nasdaq, its share price has increased 19.1 percent. Limoneira shares closed at $22.03 on June 14.

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