Consolidated corporate sales for the three-month period ended Feb. 28, 2022, were $5,613,000 compared to $5,401,000 during the same period in fiscal 2021, an increase of $212,000, or 3.9%. The increase in consolidated revenue is attributed to increased sales in the company's Agricultural Products segment.
First quarter sales in the company's Agricultural Products segment were $4,161,000 compared to $3,500,000 for the same period in fiscal 2021, an increase of $661,000 or 18.9%, which the company attributed to increased demand for grinder mixers, beet equipment and manure spreaders.
"For the second year in a row, we have experienced historic early order program success and are carrying record backlog numbers," the press release said. "Strong commodity prices have created demand that is struggling to be met within the agriculture industry because of labor and supply chain shortages, which has in turn increased the number of early orders we are seeing. We have taken steps to combat workforce labor shortages including the installation of robotic weld cells and other new equipment that makes our existing workforce more efficient and increases shop output."
Consolidated net loss was $(406,000) for the quarter, compared to net loss of $(315,000) for the same period in fiscal 2021. The company attributed the loss in part to struggles in its Modular Buildings and Tools segments.
"The first quarter of our fiscal year is typically our worst performing quarter of the year because of the timing of orders and production in our Agricultural Products segment. Our production increases in the spring and summer months in this segment and slows down again in the winter months. Our Tools segment is carrying the backlog to be successful for the remainder of the fiscal year as we work through labor shortages with automation. The Modular Buildings segment will be working on closing additional contracts to stabilize revenues for the remainder of the year," the press release said.
"I am very pleased to see our growth strategy deliver top-line revenue increases for consecutive quarters. While our outlook for the year is positive, we remain focused on investing in capital equipment that helps improve our efficiency and overcome labor shortages across all our facilities," said Art's Way President David King.
"The ongoing strong demand for our products have led to the highest backlog levels in recent company history and we expect the favorable market conditions to continue to drive interest for the Agricultural Products and Tools divisions. Regarding our Modular Building segment, we expect increased activity in Q2 and Q3 as we finalize ongoing projects."