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SLI > SEC Filings for SLI > Form 10-K on 28-Mar-2013All Recent SEC Filings

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Annual Report


The following section highlights significant factors impacting the consolidated operations and financial condition of the Company and its subsidiaries. The following discussion should be read in conjunction with Item 6. "Selected Financial Data," Item 8. "Financial Statements and Supplementary Data," and the Consolidated Financial Statements included in Part IV of this Annual Report on Form 10-K.

Forward-Looking Statements

In addition to other information in this Annual Report on Form 10-K, this Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based on current expectations and the current economic environment. These statements are not guarantees of future performance. They involve a number of risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict, including, but not limited to, the Company's ability to implement its business plan, retain key management, anticipate industry and competitive conditions, realize operating efficiencies, secure necessary capital facilities and obtain favorable determinations in various legal and regulatory matters. Actual results could differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Some important assumptions and other critical factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements are specified in the Company's filings with the SEC, including the Company's Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K.


SL Industries, Inc., through its subsidiaries, designs, manufactures and markets power electronics, motion control, power protection, power quality, and specialized communication equipment that is used in a variety of medical, commercial and military aerospace, solar, computer, datacom, industrial, telecom, transportation, utility, rail and highway equipment applications. Its products are generally incorporated into larger systems to improve operating performance, safety, reliability and efficiency. The Company's products are largely sold to OEMs, the utility industry and, to a lesser extent, to commercial distributors. The Company is comprised of four domestic business segments, three of which have significant manufacturing operations in Mexico. SLPE has manufacturing, engineering and sales capability in China. Most of the Company's sales are made to customers who are based in the United States. The Company places an emphasis on highly engineered, well-built, high quality, dependable products and is dedicated to continued product enhancement and innovation.

The Company's business strategy has been to enhance the growth and profitability of each of its businesses through the penetration of attractive new market niches, further improvement of operations through the implementation of lean manufacturing principles, expansion of lean principles into the transactional side of the business, and expansion of global capabilities. The Company intends to focus on improving efficiencies that better leverage the Company's resources. Lean initiatives, both on the factory floor and throughout the organization, are ongoing. The Company expects to pursue its goals during the next twelve months principally through organic growth. The Company also continues to pursue strategic alternatives to maximize shareholder value. Some of these alternatives have included, and could continue to include, selective acquisitions, divestitures and the sale of certain assets. The Company has provided, and may from time to time in the future provide, information to interested parties.

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In the sections that follow, statements with respect to 2012 or fiscal 2012 refer to the twelve month period ending December 31, 2012. Statements with respect to 2011 or fiscal 2011 refer to the twelve month period ending December 31, 2011.

Significant Transactions and Financial Trends

Significant transactions during 2012 that impacted the Company's financial results and cash flows include a net of tax loss from discontinued operations of $1,580,000. The loss from discontinued operations was primarily comprised of environmental remediation costs, consulting fees, legal charges, and certain claims associated with the past operations at the Company's five environmental sites.

The Company has reached an agreement with both the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and EPA related to its liability for both OU-1 and OU-2 and has entered into a Consent Decree which governs the agreement. The Company has agreed to perform the remediation for OU-2. The Company intends to have its environmental consultants, who are expected to perform the requirements of the OU-2 remediation, and perform an active role in the remediation design. Also, the Company has agreed to pay a fixed sum for the United States EPA' past cost for OU-2 and a portion of the EPA's past cost for OU-1. The payments are to be made in five equal payments of $2,141,000 for a total $10,705,000, plus interest. The first payment plus interest is to be made thirty days after the effective date of the Consent Decree (day the judge signs and files the decree). The next four payments will be made on the anniversary of the first payment plus ten days in the same amount of $2,141,000 plus interest to avoid two payments in one continuous twelve month period. The Company has also agreed to pay the EPA's costs for oversight of the OU-2 remediation. The Consent Decree is subject to a public comment period and finally must be approved by the Federal District Court which we expect to occur by the second quarter of fiscal 2013 thereby triggering the Company's obligation under the Consent Decree. During the third quarter of 2012, the Company's legal counsel had been notified by the Assistant Attorney General of the State of New Jersey that they may file a claim for certain costs. On December 3, 2012, the Company received a demand letter from the State of New Jersey. The demand is for $1,300,000 for past and future cleanup costs and $500,000 for NRDs for a total of $1,800,000. Although the Company and its counsel believe that it has meritorious defenses to any claim for reimbursement of past cost and NRD damages, the Company has offered to pay $250,000 to fully resolve the claim recently presented by the State of New Jersey for past costs, future costs and NRD at the Puchack Well Field Superfund site. The State of New Jersey is currently evaluating the Company's counter-offer. Based on the current available information, the Company has estimated a total combined potential liability for OU-1 and OU-2 and the State of New Jersey's claim to be in the range of $20,378,000 to $32,078,000. The Company has recorded an accrual of $20,378,000 related to its combined liability related to this site. The estimated OU-2 remediation liability is based upon the EPA's plan for remediation as provided in the ROD for OU-2 and the evaluation of data by our environmental engineering consultants. The liability for past costs of OU-1 and OU-2 is based upon the current terms of the Consent Decree. The Company, in consultation with its consultants and legal counsel, has agreed to a SOW for the implementation of the remedy selected in the September 26, 2011 ROD for OU-2. The SOW will be incorporated into the Consent Decree and will be an enforceable part of the Consent Decree.

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On February 27, 2012, the Company purchased certain assets of Pro-Dex Astromec, Inc., a subsidiary of Pro-Dex Inc., for approximately $1,050,000, which includes the assumption of liabilities for an estimated earn-out of $294,000. The acquisition was paid for in cash. The earn-out is comprised of quarterly payments based on the performance of the acquired business over the three year period immediately following the date of acquisition. During 2012, $112,000 was paid related to the earn-out. SL-MTI recorded direct acquisition costs of approximately $434,000 during 2012, which are recorded within selling, general and administrative expenses in the Consolidated Statements of Income. The results from the acquisition date through December 31, 2012 are included in the SL-MTI segment.

During 2012, the Company entered into a series of foreign currency forward contracts to hedge its exposure to foreign exchange rate movements in its forecasted expenses in China and Mexico. The foreign currency forwards are not speculative and are being used to manage the Company's exposure to foreign exchange rate movements. Foreign currency forward agreements involve fixing the USD-MXN and USD-CNH exchange rates for delivery of a specified amount of foreign currency on a specified date. The Company has elected not to apply hedge accounting to these derivatives and they are marked to market through earnings. Therefore, gains and losses resulting from changes in the fair value of these contracts are recognized at the end of each reporting period directly in earnings. During 2012, the Company recognized a $243,000 gain associated with the foreign currency forward contracts, which is included in other gain (loss), net on the Consolidated Statements of Income. As of December 31, 2012, the fair value of the foreign currency forward contracts was recorded as a $243,000 asset in other current assets on the Consolidated Balance Sheets.

On May 30, 2012, the Company announced a modified "Dutch Auction" Tender Offer to purchase up to $10 million of its common shares. The Company accepted for purchase approximately 307,000 shares of its common stock at a purchase price of $13.50 per share. These shares represented approximately 6.9% of the total common stock outstanding as of June 27, 2012 prior to the purchase of shares pursuant to the Tender Offer. With the completion of the Tender Offer, the Company had approximately 4,121,000 shares of common stock outstanding at that time. The aggregate purchase price paid by the Company in connection with the Tender Offer was $4,147,000 excluding transaction costs. The Company paid for the Tender Offer with available cash on hand.

On August 9, 2012, the Company entered into a new senior revolving credit facility (the 2012 Credit Facility) with PNC Bank to replace its 2008 Credit Facility. The 2012 Credit Facility provides for borrowings up to $40,000,000 and under certain conditions maximum borrowings up to $70,000,000. The 2012 Credit Facility included a $5,000,000 sublimit for letters of credit (subsequently amended on March 11, 2013 to a maximum of $25,000,000 subject to designated usage) and provides for a separate $10,700,000 letter of credit which expires one year from the date of closing, with annual extensions. The 2012 Credit Facility expires on August 9, 2016.

During the third quarter of 2012, the Company announced to its employees a restructuring plan to align its costs with current and projected sales activity. The cost reductions were primarily direct labor employees and engineering, selling and administration employees at SLPE, RFL, and TEAL, which is part of the High Power Group. During 2012, there was a consolidated charge to earnings of $857,000, which was comprised of a $732,000 charge at SLPE, a $67,000 charge at RFL, and a $58,000 charge at TEAL. The charges are composed of severance and other employee related charges. The total number of employees affected by the restructuring plan was 67, all of which had been terminated as of December 31, 2012.

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On November 26, 2012, the board of directors of the Company declared a one-time special cash dividend of $2.00 per common share (the Dividend) for an aggregate dividend of approximately $8,322,000. The Dividend was payable on December 17, 2012 to shareholders of record at the close of business on December 6, 2012. The Dividend was funded primarily from available cash on hand with the remainder from borrowings under the 2012 Credit Facility.

On November 16, 2010, the Board of Directors authorized a plan that allows for the repurchase up to an aggregate of 470,000 shares of the Company's outstanding common stock (the 2010 Repurchase Plan). Any repurchases pursuant to the 2010 Repurchase Plan would be made in the open market or in negotiated transactions. During 2012, the Company purchased approximately 140,000 shares of Company stock at an average price of $17.59 a share through the 2010 Repurchase Plan. As a result, as of December 31, 2012, approximately 330,000 shares remained available for purchase under the 2010 Repurchase Plan. Currently the 2010 Repurchase Plan has no expiration date.

Business Trends

Demand for the Company's products and services decreased during 2012, compared to 2011. Sales for the year decreased by $11,754,000, or 6%, while income from operations decreased by $5,633,000, or 30%. During the year, sales decreased during the first nine months of 2012 but were relatively flat during the fourth quarter of 2012. Income from operations decreased during the first nine months of 2012 but rebounded for an increase of $308,000, or 7%, during the fourth quarter of 2012.

Bookings during 2012 decreased by $5,382,000, or 3%, compared to 2011. The decrease was due to a 5% decrease at SL-MTI and RFL, and a 3% decrease at SLPE. Bookings for the year at the High Power Group were relatively flat. Backlog at December 31, 2012 was $60,445,000, compared to $61,104,000, for a decrease of 1%, compared to December 31, 2011.

The Company's management is taking numerous actions to improve sales through the deployment of numerous growth tools aimed at identifying attractive market segments and penetrating those markets through aggressive new product introduction. The Company is also identifying and penetrating selected geographic opportunities. The Company is continuing to emphasize lean initiatives at all of its facilities in manufacturing as well as in the office.

While these items are important in understanding and evaluating financial results and trends, other transactions or events, which are disclosed in this Management's Discussion and Analysis, may have a material impact on continuing operations. A complete understanding of these transactions is necessary in order to estimate the likelihood that these trends will continue.

Critical Accounting Policies

The Company's consolidated financial statements have been prepared in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles in the United States ("GAAP"). GAAP requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the amounts of reported and contingent assets and liabilities at the date of the consolidated financial statements and the amounts of reported net sales and expenses during the reporting period.

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The SEC has issued disclosure guidance for "critical accounting policies." The SEC defines "critical accounting policies" as those that are most important to the portrayal of the Company's financial condition and results, and that require application of management's most difficult, subjective or complex judgments, often as a result of the need to make estimates about the effect of matters that are inherently uncertain and may change in subsequent periods.

The Company's significant accounting policies are described in Note 1 in the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements included in Part IV of this Annual Report on Form 10-K. Not all of these significant accounting policies require management to make difficult, subjective or complex judgments or estimates. However, the following policies are deemed to be critical within the SEC definition. The Company's senior management has reviewed these critical accounting policies and estimates and the related Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations with the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors.

Revenue Recognition

Revenue is recognized when persuasive evidence of an arrangement exists, delivery has occurred or services have been rendered, the purchase price is fixed or determinable and collectability is reasonably assured. Revenue is recorded in accordance with Staff Accounting Bulletin ("SAB") No. 104 and in certain circumstances in accordance with the guidance provided by ASC 605-25 "Revenue Recognition - Multiple-Element Arrangements." The major portion of the Company's revenue is derived from equipment sales. The Company recognizes equipment revenue upon shipment or delivery, depending upon the terms of the order, and transfer of title. Generally, the revenue recognition criteria is met at the time the product is shipped. Provisions are established for product warranties, principally based on historical experience. At times the Company establishes reserves for specific warranty issues known by management. Customer service and installation revenue is recognized when completed. RFL has customer service revenue, which accounted for less than one percent of consolidated net revenue for the years ended 2012 and 2011. At SL-MTI, revenue from one particular contract was considered a multiple-element arrangement and, in that case, revenues were allocated among the separate accounting units based on relative fair value. In this case the total arrangement consideration was fixed and there was objective and reliable evidence of fair value. This contract was completed during 2010.

SLPE has two sales programs with distributors, pursuant to which credits are issued to distributors: (1) a re-stocking program and (2) a competitive discount program. The distributor re-stocking program allows distributors to rotate up to a pre-determined percentage of their purchases over the previous six month period. SLPE provides for this allowance as a decrease to revenue based upon the amount of sales to each distributor and other historical factors. The competitive discount program allows a distributor to sell a product out of its inventory at a negotiated price in order to meet certain competitive situations. SLPE records this discount as a reduction to revenue based on the distributor's eligible inventory. The eligible distributor inventory is reviewed at least quarterly. No cash is paid under either distributor program. These programs affected consolidated gross revenue for 2012, 2011 and 2010 by approximately 0.6%, 0.5% and 0.6%, respectively.

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Certain judgments affect the application of the Company's revenue policy, as mentioned above. Revenue recognition is significant because net revenue is a key component of results of operations. In addition, revenue recognition determines the timing of certain expenses, such as commissions, royalties and certain incentive programs. Revenue results are difficult to predict. Any shortfall in revenue or delay in recognizing revenue could cause operating results to vary significantly from year to year and quarter to quarter.

Allowance For Doubtful Accounts

The Company's estimate for the allowance for doubtful accounts related to trade receivables is based on two methods. The amounts calculated from each of these methods are combined to determine the total amount reserved. First, the Company evaluates specific accounts where it has information that the customer may have an inability to meet its financial obligations (e.g., bankruptcy or insolvency). In these cases, the Company uses its judgment, based on the best available facts and circumstances, and records a specific reserve for that customer against amounts due to reduce the receivable to the amount that is expected to be collected. These specific reserves are reevaluated and adjusted as additional information is received that impacts the amount reserved. Second, a general reserve is established for all customers based on several factors, including historical write-offs as a percentage of sales. If circumstances change (e.g., higher than expected defaults or an unexpected material adverse change in a major customer's ability to meet its financial obligation), the Company's estimates of the recoverability of amounts due could be reduced by a material amount. Receivables are charged off against the reserve when they are deemed uncollectible. The Company's allowance for doubtful accounts represented 2.0% and 2.0% of gross trade receivables at December 31, 2012 and December 31, 2011, respectively.


The Company values inventory at the lower of cost or market, and continually reviews the book value of discontinued product lines to determine if these items are properly valued. The Company identifies these items and assesses the ability to dispose of them at a price greater than cost. If it is determined that cost is less than market value, then cost is used for inventory valuation. If market value is less than cost, then related inventory is adjusted to market value.

If a write down to the current market value is necessary, the market value cannot be greater than the net realizable value, which is defined as selling price less costs to complete and dispose, and cannot be lower than the net realizable value less a normal profit margin. The Company also continually evaluates the composition of its inventory and identifies obsolete, slow-moving and excess inventories. Inventory items identified as obsolete, slow-moving or excess are evaluated to determine if reserves are required. If the Company were not able to achieve its expectations of the net realizable value of the inventory at current market value, it would have to adjust its reserves accordingly. The Company attempts to accurately estimate future product demand to properly adjust inventory levels. However, significant unanticipated changes in demand could have a significant impact on the value of inventory and of operating results.

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Derivative Instruments and Hedging Activities

FASB ASC 815, "Derivatives and Hedging" ("ASC 815"), provides the disclosure requirements for derivatives and hedging activities with the intent to provide users of financial statements with an enhanced understanding of: (a) how and why an entity uses derivative instruments, (b) how the entity accounts for derivative instruments and related hedged items, and (c) how derivative instruments and related hedged items affect an entity's financial position, financial performance, and cash flows. Further, qualitative disclosures are required that explain the Company's objectives and strategies for using derivatives, as well as quantitative disclosures about the fair value of and gains and losses on derivative instruments, and disclosures about credit-risk-related contingent features in derivative instruments.

The Company is exposed to certain risks arising from both its business operations and economic conditions. The Company principally manages its exposures to a wide variety of business and operational risks through management of its core business activities. Certain of the Company's foreign operations expose the Company to fluctuations of foreign interest rates and exchange rates. These fluctuations may impact the value of the Company's revenues, expenses, cash receipts and payments in terms of the Company's functional currency. The Company enters into derivative financial instruments to protect the value or fix the amount of certain cash flows in terms of the functional currency of the business unit with that exposure.

As required by ASC 815, the Company records all derivatives on the balance sheet at fair value. The accounting for changes in the fair value of derivatives depends on the intended use of the derivative, whether the Company has elected to designate a derivative in a hedging relationship and apply hedge accounting and whether the hedging relationship has satisfied the criteria necessary to apply hedge accounting. The Company enters into derivative contracts that are intended to economically hedge certain of its risk, even though hedge accounting does not apply or the Company elects not to apply hedge accounting. Currently, the Company does not apply hedge accounting to any of its foreign currency derivatives.

Accounting For Income Taxes

Significant management judgment is required in determining the provision for income taxes, deferred tax assets and liabilities and any valuation allowance recorded against deferred tax assets. Net deferred tax assets as of December 31, 2012 and December 31, 2011 were $13,134,000 and $13,314,000, respectively, net of valuation allowances of $1,987,000 (mostly related to discontinued operations) for fiscal 2012 and $1,926,000 (mostly related to discontinued operations) for 2011. The carrying value of the Company's net deferred tax assets assumes that the Company will be able to generate sufficient future taxable income in certain tax jurisdictions. Valuation allowances are attributable to uncertainties related to the Company's ability to utilize certain deferred tax assets prior to expiration. These deferred tax assets primarily consist of the state tax expense on certain expenses and loss carryforwards. The valuation allowance is based on estimates of taxable income, expenses and credits by the jurisdictions in which the Company operates and the period over which deferred tax assets will be recoverable. In the event that actual results differ from these estimates or these estimates are adjusted in future periods, the Company may need to establish an additional valuation allowance that could materially impact its consolidated financial position and results of operations. Each quarter, management evaluates the ability to realize the deferred tax assets and assesses the need for additional valuation allowances.

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The Company applies the provisions of ASC 740-10-55 to all tax positions for which the statute of limitations remain open. The amount of unrecognized tax benefits as of December 31, 2012 was $595,000, excluding interest and penalties. This amount represents unrecognized tax benefits, which, if ultimately recognized, will reduce the Company's effective tax rate. As of December 31, 2012 and December 31, 2011, the Company reported accrued interest and penalties related to unrecognized tax benefits of $62,000 and $80,000, respectively. For additional disclosures related to accounting for income taxes, see Note 10 in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements included in Part IV of this Annual Report on Form 10-K.

Legal Contingencies

The Company is currently involved in certain legal proceedings. As discussed in Note 15 in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements included in Part IV to this Annual Report on Form 10-K, the Company has accrued an estimate of the probable costs for the resolution of these claims. This estimate has been developed based on the current stage of negotiations and data from the Company's environmental engineering consultants and legal counsel. Management does not believe these proceedings will have a further material adverse effect on the Company's consolidated financial position, except as discussed in Note 15. As with litigation, generally the outcome is inherently uncertain. It is possible, however, that future results of operations for any particular quarterly or annual period could be materially affected by changes in these assumptions, or the effectiveness of these strategies, related to these proceedings.


The Company has allocated its adjusted goodwill balance to its reporting units. The Company tests goodwill for impairment annually at fiscal year-end and in . . .

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