Press Release

<< Back
Boston Beer Reports 13% Increase in Fourth Quarter Net Revenue and a 19% Diluted EPS Increase for the Full Year

BOSTON, March 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The Boston Beer Company, Inc. (NYSE: SAM) achieved fourth quarter 2006 net revenue of $73.3 million, an increase of 13% over fourth quarter 2005. The increase was driven by a 12% increase in shipment volume and a 1.0% increase in net revenue per barrel as compared to the same quarter last year. Fourth quarter 2006 diluted earnings per share were $0.17 and net income was $2.5 million, an increase of $0.01 per diluted share and $0.2 million, respectively, from the same quarter last year. The earnings per diluted share in the fourth quarter of 2006 includes an after tax impact of $0.06 per diluted share from stock-based compensation expense due to the impact of performance-based stock options and the adoption of FAS 123R, Accounting for Stock-Based Compensation. For the fiscal year ended December 30, 2006, the Company recorded diluted earnings per share of $1.27 and net income of $18.2 million, up $0.20 per diluted share and $2.6 million, respectively, from the 2005 fiscal year. The earnings per diluted share in 2006 includes an after tax impact of $0.11 per diluted share from stock-based compensation expense due to performance-based stock options and the adoption of FAS 123R. Net revenue increased by 20% to $285.4 million in 2006 compared to 2005 net revenue.

Jim Koch, Chairman and Founder of the Company, commented, "We are excited with the 18% depletions growth achieved in the fourth quarter, which contributed to 17% growth for the full year 2006 and we believe that we gained share of both the Better Beer and the Craft beer categories during 2006. Craft Beer is benefiting from increased support from retailers and wholesalers, as they recognize the potential of this fast growing and profitable category. I am optimistic about craft beer trends and believe that, as the leading craft brewer, the Company should be able to benefit from them in 2007. I am delighted to find more beer drinkers sharing my passion for great full flavored beer. I believe that the quality of the Samuel Adams brand and our unique beers position us well to meet this growing drinker interest."

Martin Roper, Boston Beer Company President and CEO, added, "Our fourth quarter depletions growth reflected double digit growth in the Samuel Adams brand family and single digit growth for the Twisted Tea brand family. We believe that our Samuel Adams brand health continues to benefit from our significant brand support investment in media, our sales force, point of sale materials and promotions. We continue to evaluate incremental investments in order to maintain our leading position within the fastest growing category in beer." Mr. Roper continued, "Our Twisted Tea brand family depletions growth slowed in the fourth quarter mirroring the malternative category slowdown. We plan to continue our investment behind this brand in 2007."

Bill Urich, Boston Beer CFO, added, "Our gross margin for the fourth quarter 2006 decreased to 56.0% from 57.7% in the fourth quarter last year, due primarily to cost increases related to supply chain costs caused by the growth in demand for our beers, higher package material costs and a shift in product mix. Most of these cost pressures are expected to continue into 2007.

Fourth Quarter Results

Core shipment volume for the period was approximately 0.4 million barrels, a 12% increase from the same period in 2005. In the fourth quarter of 2006, total Company depletions grew 18%, with double digit increases in Samuel Adams Boston Lager(R), Samuel Adams(R) Seasonals and Brewmaster's Collection, offset slightly by single digit growth in Sam Adams Light(R). The Company also benefited from growth in Twisted Tea(R). The Company estimates that wholesaler inventory levels at year end 2006 are at appropriate levels given the current volumes and trends.

The Company's net income of $2.5 million, or $0.17 per diluted share, for the three months ended December 30, 2006, increased by $0.2 million or $0.01 per diluted share from the same period last year, primarily driven by an increase in net revenue mostly offset by increases in general and administrative expenses (including employee stock option expenses due to performance-based stock options and the adoption of FASB 123R) and an increase in income taxes. Net revenue increased by $8.6 million, or 13.3%, during the fourth quarter of 2006 as compared to the fourth quarter of 2005, due to the increase in shipment volume and a 1.0% increase in net revenue per barrel. The increase in net revenue per barrel is due to price increases offset by changes in package and product mix. Advertising, promotional and selling expenses decreased by $0.2 million during the quarter as compared to the prior year, primarily due to timing of point of sale expenditures offsetting increases in advertising and local marketing costs. General and administrative costs increased by $2.1 million during the quarter as compared to the prior year, driven by increases in salary, bonus and benefit costs (including employee stock option expenses of $1.3 million due to performance-based stock options and the adoption of FASB 123R) and bad debt expense. Income tax expense included an incremental accrual for state income taxes of $1.0 million for fiscal years 2003 to 2006.

Full Year 2006 Results

Core shipment volume for the fiscal year ended December 30, 2006, was 1.6 million barrels, a 17% increase over 2005. Fiscal year 2006 distributor sales of the Boston Beer brands to retail (depletions) increased by approximately 17% over the 2005 fiscal year.

The Company recorded net income of $18.2 million, or $1.27 per diluted share, for the fiscal year ended December 30, 2006, an increase of $2.6 million, or $0.20 per diluted share, as compared to the 2005 fiscal year. The earnings per diluted share in 2006 of $1.27 includes an after tax impact of $1.6 million or $0.11 per diluted share from stock-based compensation expense due to the impact of performance-based options as well the adoption of FASB 123R. The 2005 earnings per share included $0.1 million in stock-based compensation expense after tax impact. Net revenue increased $47.1 million or 19.8% due to the increase in shipment volume and a 2.1% increase in net revenue per barrel for core products. The increase in net revenue per barrel for core products is due primarily to price increases and a slight shift in the package mix. Gross margin as a percent of net sales was 57.6% compared to 59.4% in the same period last year, principally due to net price increases that were more than offset by unfavorable packaging material and supply chain costs. Advertising, promotional and selling expenses increased by $12.8 million, or 12.7%, for the twelve months ended December 30, 2006 compared to the same period last year, driven by higher freight fuel costs, selling costs, promotional and advertising investment behind the brands. General and administrative expenses increased by $5.4 million compared to the same period last year, primarily due to increases in salaries and benefits (including stock based compensation of $1.9 million due to performance-based stock options and the adoption of FASB 123R), consulting, insurance and depreciation expense. Interest and other income increased by $1.6 million compared to the same period last year primarily due to interest income earned on cash investments. The effective tax rate for the full year 2006 increased to 42.7% from the 2005 rate of 39.0%, primarily as a result of the increase in state income taxes recorded in the fourth quarter. The Company's 2007 effective income tax rate is expected to be approximately 40.5%.

Bill Urich, Boston Beer's Chief Financial Officer, commented, "We are pleased with our growth in depletions accompanied by pricing increases of approximately 2% in 2006. We increased our advertising and selling investment behind our brands by almost 13%, and we achieved a 19% increase in earnings per share, while dealing with significant pressures on our supply chain costs which reduced gross margin by 1.8%." Mr. Urich continued, "We also continue to generate positive cash flow. For the full year 2006 our operating cash flow was $29.0 million. After taking into account capital expenditures of $9.1 million, our cash and short term investments as of the end of the year was $82.4 million."

Other Matters

Shipments and orders in-hand suggest that core shipments for the first fiscal quarter of 2007 could be up approximately 23% as compared to the same period in 2006. Actual shipments may differ, however, and no inferences should be drawn with respect to shipments in future periods.

Martin Roper stated, "January and February 2007 depletions are estimated to be up 23% over 2006 benefiting from an extra selling day. While there is no guarantee that these trends will continue, we are encouraged by the strong start to 2007. Our 2007 plan calls for depletion growth in the low double digits, which is slightly lower than 2006 trends. Our pricing plans include an overall 3% increase which we believe is attainable given the current market conditions."

Based on current known information, the Company is facing overall production cost increases of between 7% and 10% over full year 2006, which are driven primarily by malt increases, caused by poor worldwide barley crops, and potential glass cost increases driven by energy costs. These cost increases will be somewhat offset by price increases, but we anticipate that 2007 gross margin could be down two percentage points below full year 2006. Based on these assumptions, 2007 earnings per diluted share are expected to be between $1.42 and $1.55, absent any significant change in currently planned levels of brand support. Current plans are to increase brand support by $10.0 to $15.0 million including freight expense to wholesalers. The earnings per share range estimate does not include any significant brewery expenses associated with new brewery construction or ownership. As of December 31, 2006, the Company had capitalized $1.7 million of new brewery project expenses that would need to be expensed if a decision was made not to proceed with the new brewery. The Company's ability to achieve this type of earnings growth in 2007 is dependent on its ability to achieve challenging targets for volume, pricing and costs. The Company continues to pursue cost savings initiatives and pricing opportunities, and hopes to preserve its economics to allow for continued support of its brands with appropriate investment in order to grow volume and earnings.

As previously reported, the Company is assessing the viability of constructing a brewery in the Northeast and has secured an option on a site in Freetown, Massachusetts.

"We are working through a thorough evaluation of this site including obtaining the required permits, which we anticipate will be completed by mid year 2007," said Mr. Roper. "We continue to finalize engineering for production capacity in excess of 1.0 million barrels of Samuel Adams brand products and Twisted Tea. Our current best estimate is that total project costs could be between $170 million and $210 million, including land acquisition and development, facility construction, equipment and other startup costs and we believe financing for this to be available. The cost of the project will ultimately depend on the final specifications. We also continue to evaluate other supply strategies to ensure that any decision to build is the best decision for the Company, given the growth of the Craft beer category and known and unknown risks in supply chain alternatives."

The Company currently estimates total capital expenditures in 2007 to be between $8.0 and $12.0 million, approximately half of which is for purchases of kegs to support our on-premise depletions growth. This amount is exclusive of any further investment in the "new" brewery project or any other major investments that result from the Company's evaluation of its long term production strategy. The Company's capital investment would be significantly higher if major brewery investment projects are initiated.

During the three months ended December 30, 2006, the Company did not repurchase any of its Class A Common Stock. Through March 9, 2007, the Company has repurchased a cumulative total of approximately 7.8 million shares of its Class A Common Stock for an aggregate purchase price of $92.6 million, and had $7.4 million remaining on the $100.0 million share buyback expenditure limit set by the Board of Directors. As of March 9, 2007, the Company had 10.2 million shares of Class A Common Stock and 4.1 million shares of Class B Common Stock outstanding.

The Boston Beer Company is America's leading brewer of handcrafted, full- flavored beers. Founder and Brewer, Jim Koch, brews Samuel Adams(R) beers using the time-honored, traditional four-vessel brewing process, and the world's finest all-natural ingredients. With over 21 distinctive, award- winning styles of beer, Samuel Adams offers discerning beer drinkers a variety of brews. The brewery has won more awards in international beer-tasting competitions in the last five years than any other brewery in the world. Samuel Adams Brewery is an independent brewery and has slightly over half of a percent of the domestic beer market. Forbes magazine named The Boston Beer Company to its annual list of America's 200 Best Small Companies in 2006. The Company's flagship brand, Samuel Adams Boston Lager(R), is brewed using the same recipe and processes that Jim Koch's great-great grandfather used in the mid 1800s. The result is a beer renowned by drinkers for its full flavor, balance, complexity, and consistent quality. For more information, visit www.samueladams.com or visit www.bostonbeer.com for financial information.

Statements made in this press release that state the Company's or management's intentions, hopes, beliefs, expectations or predictions of the future are forward-looking statements. It is important to note that the Company's actual results could differ materially from those projected in such forward-looking statements. Additional information concerning factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward- looking statements is contained from time to time in the Company's SEC filings, including, but not limited to, the Company's report on Form 10-K for the years ended December 31, 2005 and December 25, 2004. Copies of these documents may be found on the Company's website, www.bostonbeer.com or obtained by contacting the Company or the SEC.



                  THE BOSTON BEER COMPANY, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
                                Financial Results
                      (In thousands, except per share data)

    Operating Results:
                                 (unaudited)
                              Three Months Ended           Year Ended
                           December 30, December 31, December 30, December 31,
                               2006         2005         2006         2005

    Barrels sold                416          371        1,612        1,364

    Revenue                 $81,013      $71,392     $315,250     $263,255
    Less excise taxes         7,670        6,640       29,819       24,951
      Net revenue            73,343       64,752      285,431      238,304
    Cost of goods sold       32,267       27,414      121,155       96,830
      Gross profit           41,076       37,338      164,276      141,474
    Operating expenses:
      Advertising,
       promotional and
       selling expenses      29,010       29,173      113,669      100,870
      General and
       administrative
       expenses               6,976        4,916       22,657       17,288
        Total operating
         expenses            35,986       34,089      136,326      118,158
    Operating income          5,090        3,249       27,950       23,316
    Other income, net:
      Interest income           970          556        3,143        1,761
      Other income, net         171           49          673          442
    Income before
     provision for
     income taxes             6,231        3,854       31,766       25,519
    Provision for
     income taxes             3,754        1,588       13,574        9,960
      Net income             $2,477       $2,266      $18,192      $15,559

    Net income per
     common share - basic     $0.18        $0.16        $1.31        $1.10
    Net income per
     common share - diluted   $0.17        $0.16        $1.27        $1.07

    Weighted-average
     number of common
     shares - basic          13,971       13,915       13,900       14,126
    Weighted-average
     number of common
     shares - diluted        14,520       14,328       14,375       14,516


   Copies of The Boston Beer Company's press releases, including quarterly
    financial results, are available on the Internet at www.bostonbeer.com



    Consolidated Balance Sheets:
      (in thousands, except share data)
                                                 December 30,     December 31,
                                                     2006             2005

    Assets
      Current Assets:
        Cash and cash equivalents                  $63,147           $41,516
        Short-term investments                      19,223            22,425
        Accounts receivable, net of allowance
         for doubtful accounts of $451 and $116
         as of December 30, 2006 and
         December 31, 2005, respectively            17,770             9,534
        Inventories                                 17,034            13,649
        Prepaid expenses and other assets            2,721             1,236
        Deferred income taxes                          667               829
          Total current assets                     120,562            89,189

      Property, plant and equipment, net            30,699            26,525
      Other assets                                   1,837             1,963
      Goodwill                                       1,377             1,377
          Total assets                            $154,475          $119,054

    Liabilities and Stockholders' Equity
      Current Liabilities:
        Accounts payable                           $17,942           $11,378
        Accrued expenses                            22,928            17,361
          Total current liabilities                 40,870            28,739

      Deferred income taxes                          1,494             2,390
      Other liabilities                              3,522             1,946
          Total liabilities                         45,886            33,075

      Commitments and Contingencies

      Stockholders' Equity:
        Class A Common Stock, $.01 par value;
         22,700,000 shares authorized;
         9,992,347 and 9,814,457 issued and
         outstanding as of December 30, 2006
         and December 31, 2005, respectively           100                98
        Class B Common Stock, $.01 par value;
         4,200,000 shares authorized;
         4,107,355 issued and outstanding               41                41
        Additional paid-in capital                  80,158            70,808
        Unearned compensation                            -              (353)
        Accumulated other comprehensive loss,
         net of tax                                   (197)             (196)
        Retained earnings                           28,487            15,581
          Total stockholders' equity               108,589            85,979
          Total liabilities and
           stockholders' equity                   $154,475          $119,054



    Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows:
      (in thousands)
                                                           Year Ended
                                                   December 30,   December 31,
                                                       2006           2005

    Cash flows provided by operating activities:
      Net income                                     $18,192         $15,559
      Adjustments to reconcile net income to
       net cash provided by operating activities:
        Depreciation and amortization                  4,991           4,521
        (Gain) loss on disposal of property,
         plant and equipment                              (8)            162
        Bad debt expense (recovery)                      365            (255)
        Stock-based compensation expense               2,751             146
        Excess tax benefit from stock-based
         compensation arrangements                    (2,240)              -
        Tax benefit from stock options exercised           -           1,172
        Deferred income taxes                           (731)            952
          Purchases of trading securities            (36,577)         (9,075)
          Proceeds from sale of trading securities    39,779          10,650
        Changes in operating assets and liabilities:
          Accounts receivable                         (8,601)          3,547
          Inventories                                 (3,385)         (1,088)
          Prepaid expenses and other assets           (1,506)         (1,133)
          Accounts payable                             6,564           1,634
          Accrued expenses                             7,807             867
          Other liabilities                            1,576           1,182
            Net cash provided by
             operating activities                     28,977          28,841

    Cash flows used in investing activities:
      Purchases of property, plant and equipment      (9,056)        (13,973)
      Proceeds from disposal of property,
       plant and equipment                                42             129
            Net cash used in investing activities     (9,014)        (13,844)

    Cash flows provided by (used in) financing
     activities:
      Repurchase of Class A common stock              (5,288)        (12,537)
      Proceeds from exercise of stock options          4,500           2,952
      Excess tax benefit from stock-based
       compensation arrangements                       2,240               -
      Net proceeds from sale of investment shares        216             310
            Net cash provided by (used in)
             financing activities                      1,668          (9,275)

    Change in cash and cash equivalents               21,631           5,722

    Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of year    41,516            35,794

    Cash and cash equivalents at end of period       $63,147           $41,516

    Supplemental disclosure of cash flow
     information:
      Income taxes paid                              $10,632            $7,901

SOURCE:
The Boston Beer Company, Inc.

CONTACT:
Michelle Sullivan of The Boston Beer Company
1-617-368-5165
Company News On-Call: http://www.prnewswire.com/comp/108764.html
Web site: http://www.bostonbeer.com
http://www.samueladams.com