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ePlus Reports Fourth Quarter and Fiscal 2014 Results

For Fourth Quarter 2014

  • Revenue increased 10% to $259.9 million, driven by 11.6% growth in Technology segment
  • Gross profit margin of 21%; 18.8% on Products and Services
  • Earnings Per Diluted Share of $1.03, up 8.4%

For Fiscal Year 2014

  • Revenue increased 7.6% to $1.1 billion
  • Gross profit margin of 20.5%; 18.3% on Products and Services
  • Earnings Per Diluted Share of $4.37, up from $4.32
  • Build out of engineering and sales capabilities to drive future growth

HERNDON, Va., June 3, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ePlus inc., (Nasdaq:PLUS) a leading provider of technology solutions, today announced financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended March 31, 2014.

Management Comment

"Fiscal 2014 was a year of continued progress for ePlus and demonstrated our ability to generate solid revenue growth, significantly ahead of the overall IT spending growth rate," said Phillip G. Norton, CEO, Chairman and President of ePlus. "Technology revenues increased 8.3% for the year, supported by higher services revenues, as we continued to emphasize this value-added, higher margin part of our business and provide existing and new customers with increasingly complex IT solutions. Our technology segment, which accounted for 96.6% of total revenue, produced a 10.3% increase in earnings before taxes, thanks to our ongoing focus on containing and even reducing certain administrative costs, while expanding our engineering and sales headcount. This positive performance more than offset the year-over-year decrease in revenues from our financing business, where comparisons tend to be more uneven. Demand for our financing services from new and existing customers, however, remains strong.

"After a more muted first half, our technology product and services sales re-accelerated in the second half of fiscal 2014. We ended fiscal 2014 with positive momentum, posting year-over-year improvements in revenues and diluted earnings per share and a 20.5% gross profit margin.

"Our balance sheet remained strong, with cash and cash equivalents of $80.2 million at the end of fiscal 2014 and unfunded financing portfolio assets which could generate up to $71 million in cash proceeds if funded. This provides us with the financial resources and flexibility to take advantage of organic and acquisition growth opportunities in the periods ahead," Mr. Norton noted.

Fiscal Fourth Quarter 2014 Results

  • For the quarter ended March 31, 2014, consolidated revenues increased 10.0% to $259.9 million from $236.3 million in last year's fourth quarter.
  • Technology revenues increased 11.6% to $251.9 million, up from $225.7 million a year earlier.
  • Financing revenues were $8.0 million, down from $10.6 million in the fiscal 2013 fourth quarter.
  • Net earnings rose 6.8% to $8.2 million, or $1.03 per diluted share, compared with $7.7 million, or $0.95 per diluted share, in last year's fourth quarter.

Fiscal 2014 Results

  • For fiscal year 2014, consolidated revenues rose 7.6% to $1.1 billion, from $983.1 million a year earlier.
  • Technology revenues were $1.0 billion, an increase of 8.3% from the $943.2 million reported last year.
  • Financing revenues for fiscal 2014 were $36.1 million, compared with $39.9 million a year earlier.
  • Net earnings rose 1.3% to $35.3 million, or $4.37 per diluted share, compared with $34.8 million, or $4.32 per diluted share in fiscal 2013.

Balance Sheet Highlights

At March 31, 2014, the Company had $80.2 million of cash and cash equivalents and short term investments, compared to $53.7 million on March 31, 2013. Total stockholders' equity was $266.4 million and total diluted shares outstanding were 8.0 million, compared to $238.2 million and 7.9 million diluted shares, respectively, at March 31, 2013.

Summary and Outlook

"Fiscal 2014 was another year of solid performance for ePlus and has set the stage for continued growth and progress. Ongoing investments to expand our engineering capabilities and headcount and increase our sales and marketing personnel and programs, we believe should enable us to continue to grow revenues at a faster pace than the overall IT market and to continue to post significant year-over-year increases in services revenues. We believe that we are competitively well-positioned to achieve organic growth by providing complex IT solutions to a diversified and expanding roster of over 2,800 customers, and that there will be significant opportunities ahead to make accretive acquisitions designed to further broaden our customer base and capabilities, and build out the geographic coverage of our national footprint," Mr. Norton concluded.

Results of Operations – Three Months Ended March 31, 2014

The Company's operations are conducted through two business segments. The technology segment includes sales of information technology products, third-party software, third-party maintenance contracts, advanced professional services and managed services, and licensing of the Company's proprietary software to commercial, and state and local governments and educational institutions. The financing segment consists of the financing of equipment, software and related services to commercial, state and local governments, educational institutions and government contractors.

Technology Segment

The results of operations for the technology segment for the three months ended March 31, 2014 and 2013 were as follows (dollars in thousands):

Three Months Ended March 31,
2014 2013 Change
Sales of product and services $249,307 $223,715 $25,592 11.4%
Fee and other income 2,559 1,996 563 28.2%
Total revenues 251,866 225,711 26,155 11.6%
Cost of sales, product and services 202,313 179,754 22,559 12.5%
Professional and other fees 1,343 2,833 (1,490) (52.6%)
Salaries and benefits 29,878 27,621 2,257 8.2%
General and administrative 5,507 4,845 662 13.7%
Interest and financing costs 20 19 1 5.3%
Total costs and expenses 239,061 215,072 23,989 11.2%
Segment earnings $12,805 $10,639 $2,166 20.4%
Gross margin, product and services 18.8% 19.7%

Total revenues increased 11.6% to $251.9 million, compared to $225.7 million in last year's fourth quarter, reflecting higher sales of products and services to large and middle-market customers. Total costs and expenses increased 11.2% to $239.1 million, compared with $215.1 million in the year-ago quarter, due to a combination of higher revenues and related costs, and a 6.6% increase in engineering and sales and marketing headcount.

Gross margin on sales of products and services was 18.8%. The 19.7% reported for the same quarter last year included product mix and pricing benefits specific to that period.

Technology segment earnings were $12.8 million, compared with $10.6 million a year earlier.

Financing Segment

The results of operations for the financing segment for the three months ended March 31, 2014 and 2013 were as follows (dollars in thousands):

Three Months Ended March 31,
2014 2013 Change
Financing revenue $7,907 $10,561 $(2,654) (25.1%)
Fee and other income 135 40 95 237.5%
Total revenues 8,042 10,601 (2,559) (24.1%)
Direct lease costs 2,945 3,254 (309) (9.5%)
Professional and other fees 544 1,947 (1,403) (72.1%)
Salaries and benefits 2,111 2,534 (423) (16.7%)
General and administrative 711 279 432 154.8%
Interest and financing costs 539 481 58 12.1%
Total costs and expenses 6,850 8,495 (1,645) (19.4%)
Segment earnings $1,192 $2,106 $(914) (43.4%)

Total revenues fell 24.1% to $8.0 million, compared to $10.6 million a year earlier, primarily due to lower transactional gains. Total costs and expenses fell 19.4% to $6.9 million, compared with $8.5 million a year earlier, in line with the revenue decline.

Financing segment earnings were $1.2 million, compared to $2.1 million a year earlier.

Results of Operations – Year Ended March 31, 2014

Technology Segment

The results of operations for our technology segment for the years ended March 31, 2014 and 2013 were as follows (dollars in thousands):

Year Ended March 31,
2014 2013 Change
Sales of product and services $1,013,374 $936,228 $77,146 8.2%
Fee and other income 8,037 6,949 1,088 15.7%
Total revenues 1,021,411 943,177 78,234 8.3%
Cost of sales, product and services 827,875 767,447 60,428 7.9%
Professional and other fees 7,557 9,638 (2,081) (21.6%)
Salaries and benefits 113,481 100,447 13,034 13.0%
General and administrative 21,103 19,028 2,075 10.9%
Interest and financing costs 84 89 (5) (5.6%)
Total costs and expenses 970,100 896,649 73,451 8.2%
Segment earnings $51,311 $46,528 $4,783 10.3%
Gross margin, product and services 18.3% 18.0%

Total revenues for the year ended March 31, 2014 increased 8.3% to $1.0 billion, from $943.2 million a year earlier, assisted by an increase in professional service revenues.

The Company maintained its balanced portfolio of customer end markets. The breakdown of sales of products and services as a percentage of total was as follows:

Technology 21%
State & Local Government & Educational Institutions 20%
Telecom, Media, and Entertainment 18%
Financial Services 11%
Healthcare 11%
Other 19%

Total costs and expenses for the year ended March 31, 2014 increased 8.2% to $970.1 million, from $896.6 million a year earlier, reflecting an increase in revenues and related costs and a 6.6% increase in engineering and sales and marketing headcount to 643 from 603. Gross margin on sales of product and services was 18.3%, up from 18.0% in last fiscal year. Segment earnings were $51.3 million compared to $46.5 million in the prior year.

Financing Segment

The results of operations for our financing segment for the years ended March 31, 2014 and 2013 were as follows (dollars in thousands):

Year Ended March 31,
2014 2013 Change
Financing revenue $35,896 $38,384 $(2,488) (6.5%)
Fee and other income 229 1,551 (1,322) (85.2%)
Total revenues 36,125 39,935 (3,810) (9.5%)
Direct lease costs 12,748 10,892 1,856 17.0%
Professional and other fees 1,484 3,460 (1,976) (57.1%)
Salaries and benefits 9,670 10,516 (846) (8.0%)
General and administrative 1,572 1,071 501 46.8%
Interest and financing costs 1,864 1,779 85 4.8%
Total costs and expenses 27,338 27,718 (380) (1.4%)
Segment earnings $8,787 $12,217 $(3,430) (28.1%)

Revenues decreased 9.5% to $36.1 million, from $39.9 million a year earlier. Transactional gains increased by 18.8% to $8.5 million, but were more than offset by lower post-contract earnings, as last fiscal year's results benefitted from the early termination of certain lease agreements.

Total costs and expenses fell 1.4% to $27.3 million, from $27.7 million a year earlier, and segment earnings fell 28.1% to $8.8 million, from $12.2 million in fiscal 2013.

Recent Corporate Developments

  • In May 2014, ePlus completed a secondary common stock offering by existing stockholders of 1,810,000 shares, including shares sold in the overallotment, at a price to the public of $50.00 per share. ePlus did not receive any proceeds from the transaction. In connection with the offering, the Company repurchased from the underwriters 400,000 shares of ePlus common stock for an aggregate purchase price of $19.0 million, using proceeds generated by funding a portion of the financing portfolio with non-recourse notes payable.
  • On February 4, 2014, ePlus announced the opening of a new managed services center in the Raleigh, NC area. The 12,000 square-foot facility is ePlus' third Managed Services Center in the United States.

Recognitions

  • On December 4, 2013, ePlus was awarded top partner ranking in FlexPod sales for the first half of NetApp's fiscal year 2014. FlexPod is a pretested and validated solution that combines networking, computing and storage in a shared infrastructure and supports multiple applications and workloads to help customers accelerate and simplify their transition to the cloud.
  • On April 1, 2014, ePlus received a Cisco Partner Summit Global award, recognized as Cloud Builder of the Year. In addition, ePlus received the following recognitions at the summit:
    • Commercial Partner of the Year, Americas
    • Architectural Excellence - Collaboration, US/Canada: East
    • Cisco Meraki Elevate East Partner of the Year, US/Canada: East
    • SLED Partner of the Year, US/Canada: West
  • On April 8, 2014, ePlus was named co-winner in the Enterprise Group U.S. 2014 Top Growth Partner HP Storage VAR category at Hewlett-Packard's Global Partner Conference in Las Vegas, NV. ePlus is an HP Platinum Partner with HP specializations in Converged Infrastructure and Printing and Computing Systems.

Conference Call Information

The Company will host a conference call on Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time to review and discuss the Company's results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended March 31, 2014. The call can be accessed live over the phone by dialing (877) 870-9226, or for international callers, (973) 890-8320. Passcode 42332044. A live webcast will be available via the Company's investor relations Web site at http://www.eplus.com/investors.

A replay will be available shortly after the call and can be accessed by dialing (855) 859-2056, or for international callers, (404) 537-3406. Passcode 42332044. The replay will be available until June 5, 2014, and the webcast will also remain available for replay via the Company's investor relations page of its Web site.

About ePlus inc.

ePlus is a leading integrator of technology solutions. ePlus enables organizations to optimize their IT infrastructure and supply chain processes by delivering complex information technology solutions, which may include managed and professional services and products from top manufacturers, flexible financing, and proprietary software. Founded in 1990, ePlus has more than 900 associates serving commercial, state, municipal, and education customers nationally. The Company is headquartered in Herndon, VA. For more information, visit www.eplus.com, call 888-482-1122, or email info@eplus.com. Connect with ePlus on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ePlusinc and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ePlus.

ePlus® and ePlus products referenced herein are either registered trademarks or trademarks of ePlus inc. in the United States and/or other countries. The names of other companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Statements in this press release that are not historical facts may be deemed to be "forward-looking statements." Actual and anticipated future results may vary materially due to certain risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, possible adverse effects resulting from financial market disruption and general slowdown of the U.S. economy such as our current and potential customers' delaying or reducing technology purchases, increasing credit risk associated with our customers and vendors, reduction of vendor incentive programs, the possibility of additional goodwill impairment charges, and restrictions on our access to capital necessary to fund our operations; significant adverse changes in, reductions in, or losses of relationships with major customers or vendors; our ability to implement comprehensive plans to achieve customer account coverage, cost containment, asset rationalization, systems integration and other key strategies; our ability to secure our electronic and other confidential information; changes to our senior management team; the demand for and acceptance of, our products and services; our ability to adapt our services to meet changes in market developments; our ability to adapt to changes in the IT industry and/or rapid change in product standards; our ability to hire and retain sufficient personnel; our ability to realize our investment in leased equipment; our ability to protect our intellectual property; our ability to consummate and integrate acquisitions; the creditworthiness of our customers; our ability to raise capital and obtain non-recourse financing for our transactions; our ability to reserve adequately for credit losses; the impact of competition in our markets; the possibility of defects in our products or catalog content data; and other risks or uncertainties detailed in our reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. All information set forth in this press release is current as of the date of this release and ePlus undertakes no duty or obligation to update this information.

ePlus inc. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
As of
March 31,
2014
As of
March 31,
2013
ASSETS (amounts in thousands)
Current assets:
Cash and cash equivalents $80,179 $52,720
Short-term investments -- 982
Accounts receivable—trade, net 211,314 173,445
Accounts receivable—other, net 31,902 18,809
Inventories—net 22,629 14,795
Financing receivables—net, current 57,749 46,071
Deferred costs 10,819 9,361
Deferred tax assets 3,742 2,023
Other current assets 6,925 5,521
Total current assets 425,259 323,727
Financing receivables and operating leases—net 85,990 76,532
Property, equipment and other assets 8,013 6,672
Goodwill and other intangible assets 34,583 32,964
TOTAL ASSETS $553,845 $439,895
LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY
LIABILITIES
Current liabilities:
Accounts payable—equipment $6,772 $5,379
Accounts payable—trade 61,940 31,331
Accounts payable—floor plan 93,416 66,251
Salaries and commissions payable 12,401 12,911
Deferred revenue 21,840 16,239
Other current liabilities 15,382 17,407
Recourse notes payable - current 1,460 390
Non-recourse notes payable - current 30,907 22,169
Total current liabilities 244,118 172,077
Recourse notes payable - long term 2,100 1,094
Non-recourse notes payable - long term 34,421 18,086
Deferred tax liability - long term 5,001 6,818
Other liabilities 1,822 3,588
TOTAL LIABILITIES 287,462 201,663
COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES
STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY
Preferred stock, $.01 per share par value; 2,000 shares authorized; none issued or outstanding -- --
Common stock, $.01 per share par value; 25,000 shares authorized; 13,026 issued and 8,036 outstanding at March 31, 2014 and 12,899 issued and 8,150 outstanding at March 31, 2013 130 129
Additional paid-in capital 105,924 99,641
Treasury stock, at cost, 4,990 and 4,749 shares, respectively (80,494) (67,306)
Retained earnings 240,637 205,358
Accumulated other comprehensive income—foreign currency translation adjustment 186 410
Total Stockholders' Equity 266,383 238,232
TOTAL LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY $553,845 $439,895
ePlus inc. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS
Three Months Ended
March 31,
Twelve Months Ended
March 31,
2014 2013 2014 2013
(amounts in thousands, except shares and per share data)
Sales of product and services $249,307 $223,715 $1,013,374 $936,228
Financing revenue 7,907 10,561 35,896 38,384
Fee and other income 2,694 2,036 8,266 8,500
TOTAL REVENUES 259,908 236,312 1,057,536 983,112
COSTS AND EXPENSES
Cost of sales, product and services 202,313 179,754 827,875 767,447
Direct lease costs 2,945 3,254 12,748 10,892
205,258 183,008 840,623 778,339
Professional and other fees 1,887 4,780 9,041 13,098
Salaries and benefits 31,989 30,155 123,151 110,963
General and administrative expenses 6,218 5,124 22,675 20,099
Interest and financing costs 559 500 1,948 1,868
40,653 40,559 156,815 146,028
TOTAL COSTS AND EXPENSES 245,911 223,567 997,438 924,367
EARNINGS BEFORE PROVISION FOR INCOME TAXES 13,997 12,745 60,098 58,745
PROVISION FOR INCOME TAXES 5,775 5,043 24,825 23,915
NET EARNINGS $8,222 $7,702 $35,273 $34,830
NET EARNINGS PER COMMON SHARE—BASIC $1.04 $0.96 $4.41 $4.37
NET EARNINGS PER COMMON SHARE—DILUTED $1.03 $0.95 $4.37 $4.32
WEIGHTED AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING—BASIC 7,865 7,907 7,927 7,810
WEIGHTED AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING—DILUTED 7,916 7,963 7,999 7,903
ePlus inc. AND SUBSIDIARIES
STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS BY SEGMENT
Three Months Ended March 31,
2014 2013
Technology Financing Technology Financing
(amounts in thousands)
Sales of product and services $249,307 $ -- $223,715 $ --
Financing revenue -- 7,907 -- 10,561
Fee and other income 2,559 135 1,996 40
TOTAL REVENUE 251,866 8,042 225,711 10,601
Cost of sales, product and services 202,313 -- 179,754 --
Direct lease costs -- 2,945 -- 3,254
Professional and other fees 1,343 544 2,833 1,947
Salaries and benefits 29,878 2,111 27,621 2,534
General and administrative expenses 5,507 711 4,845 279
Interest and financing costs 20 539 19 481
TOTAL COSTS AND EXPENSES 239,061 6,850 215,072 8,495
SEGMENT EARNINGS $12,805 $1,192 $10,639 $2,106
Twelve Months Ended March 31,
2014 2013
Technology Financing Technology Financing
(amounts in thousands)
Sales of product and services $1,013,374 $ -- $936,228 $ --
Financing revenues -- 35,896 -- 38,384
Fee and other income 8,037 229 6,949 1,551
TOTAL REVENUES 1,021,411 36,125 943,177 39,935
Cost of sales, product and services 827,875 -- 767,447 --
Direct lease costs -- 12,748 -- 10,892
Professional and other fees 7,557 1,484 9,638 3,460
Salaries and benefits 113,481 9,670 100,447 10,516
General and administrative expenses 21,103 1,572 19,028 1,071
Interest and financing costs 84 1,864 89 1,779
TOTAL COSTS AND EXPENSES 970,100 27,338 896,649 27,718
SEGMENT EARNINGS $51,311 $8,787 $46,528 $12,217

CONTACT: Kleyton Parkhurst, SVP ePlus inc. kparkhurst@eplus.com 703-984-8150Source:ePlus inc.