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Tech Data defies sales drop to boost fourth-quarter profit

Tech Data Corp. overcame a 12 percent drop in sales as cost-cutting helped fuel a 17 percent increase in net income for the fourth quarter.

The Clearwater IT distributor, which reported results this morning, was helped by a tax benefit and the disposal of some subsidiaries. But even without those adjustments, profits were still up 4 percent.

Tech Data CEO Robert Dutkowsky credited a combination of factors, including "prudent cost reduction" and improved inventory and pricing.

"Despite the overall net sales decline, we gained share in selected markets," Dutkowsky said in a statement, "and we improved our gross margin and operating income performance both in the Americas and Europe."

Its quarterly net income of $58.6 million, or $1.17 a share, compared with net income of $50.2 million, or 92 cents a share, a year ago. Net sales fell to $5.7 billion, compared with $6.5 billion in the year-ago period.

Looking ahead, Dutkowsky predicted market conditions will "likely worsen'' in fiscal 2010 "but we continue to believe our strong customer and vendor relationships, our solid balance sheet and our veteran leadership team will serve us well during these uncertain times."

Tech Data defies sales drop to boost fourth-quarter profit 03/03/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 3, 2009 11:36am]
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