AUTHOR: CUMMIN

HED:Thomas announces record third quarter earnings

By John Cummins

Daily Journal

Thomas Industries has announced record earnings for the third quarter of 1997.

For the three months ending Sept. 30, net income was $7 million, compared to $5.9 million for the same period last year. The income comes off net sales of $141 million for the quarter.

That translates into earnings of 64 cents per share, compared to 55 cents per share last year.

Net earnings per share thus far this year are $1.60, on year-to-date net income of $17.4 million. That is up from $1.22 per share on net income of $12.9 million a year ago.

The company said its year-to-date sales were more than $407 million, compared to $381 million last year.

Thomas Lighting employs more than 600 at its Tupelo plant, which produces fluorescent and HID lighting systems under the Day-Brite brand. The Tupelo plant also produces flexible wiring systems, electronic controls, and OMEGA architectural grade down lighting products.

"The lighting group finished the third quarter with record net sales and operating income for any quarter in its history," said Timothy Brown, chairman of Thomas Industries.

"This is attributable in part to fine performances from our U.S. commercial and industrial indoor and outdoor lighting divisions, as well as our Canadian outdoor division," Brown said.

Brown said the company's Compressor and Vacuum Pump Group also posted record operating income for the third quarter. Thomas officials expect the year to end with record sales and earnings for the company.

Besides Tupelo, the company has operations throughout the U.S. and Canada, as well as Mexico, South America, Europe and Asia. The company employs 3,300 people worldwide.

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