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CVGW > SEC Filings for CVGW > Form 10-K on 13-Jan-2014All Recent SEC Filings

Show all filings for CALAVO GROWERS INC

Form 10-K for CALAVO GROWERS INC


13-Jan-2014

Annual Report


Item 7. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

You should read the following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations together with "Selected Consolidated Financial Data" and our consolidated financial statements and notes thereto that appear elsewhere in this Annual Report. This discussion and analysis contains forward-looking statements that involve risks, uncertainties, and assumptions. Actual results may differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements as a result of various factors, including, but not limited to, those presented under "Risks related to our business" included in Item 1A and elsewhere in this Annual Report.

Overview

We are a leader in the distribution of avocados, prepared avocado products, and other perishable food products throughout the United States. Our expertise in marketing and distributing avocados, prepared avocados, and other perishable foods allows us to deliver a wide array of fresh and prepared food products to food distributors, produce wholesalers, supermarkets, and restaurants on a worldwide basis. We procure avocados principally from California, Mexico, and Chile. Through our various operating facilities, we sort, pack, and/or ripen avocados, tomatoes and/or Hawaiian grown papayas. Additionally, we also produce salsa and prepare ready-to-eat produce and deli products. We report our operations in three different business segments: (1) Fresh products, (2) Calavo Foods and (3) RFG. See Note 11 to our consolidated financial statements for further discussion.

Our Fresh products business grades, sizes, packs, cools, and ripens (if desired) avocados for delivery to our customers. We presently operate two packinghouses and three operating and distributing facilities that handle avocados across the United States. These packinghouses handled approximately 30% of the California avocado crop during the 2013 fiscal year, based on data obtained from the California Avocado Commission. Our operating results and the returns we pay our growers are highly dependent on the volume of avocados delivered to our packinghouses, as a significant portion of our costs is fixed. Our strategy calls for continued efforts to retain and recruit growers that meet our business model. Additionally, our Fresh products business also procures avocados grown in Chile and Mexico, as well as other various commodities, including tomatoes, papayas, and pineapples. We operate a packinghouse in Mexico that, together with certain co-packers that we frequently purchase fruit from, handled approximately 20% of the Mexican avocado crop bound for the United States market and approximately 5% of the avocados exported from Mexico to countries other than the United States during the 2012-2013 Mexican season, based on our estimates. Our strategy is to increase our market share of currently sourced avocados to all accepted marketplaces. We believe our diversified avocado sources provides a level of supply stability that may, over time, help solidify the demand for avocados among consumers in the United States and elsewhere in the world. We believe our efforts in distributing our other various commodities, such as those shown above, complement our offerings of avocados. From time to time, we continue to explore distribution of other crops that provide reasonable returns to the business.

Our Calavo Foods business procures avocados, processes avocados into a wide variety of guacamole products, and distributes the processed product to our customers. All of our prepared avocado products shipped to North America are "cold pasteurized" and include both frozen and fresh guacamole. Due to the long shelf-life of our frozen guacamole and the purity of our fresh guacamole, we believe that we are well positioned to address the diverse taste and needs of today's customers. Additionally, we also prepare various fresh salsa products. Customers include both food service industry and retail businesses. We continue to seek to expand our relationships with major food service companies and develop alliances that will allow our products to reach a larger percentage of the marketplace.

Net sales of frozen products represented approximately 54% and 50% of total processed segment sales for the years ended October 31, 2013 and 2012. Net sales of our ultra high pressure products represented approximately 46% and 50% of total processed segment sales for the years ended October 31, 2013 and 2012.

Our RFG business produces, markets and distributes nationally a portfolio of healthy, high quality lifestyle products for consumers via the retail channel. RFG products range from fresh-cut fruit, ready-to-eat vegetables, recipe-ready vegetables and deli meat products. RFG sells under the popular labels of Garden Highway Fresh Cut, Garden Highway, and Garden Highway Chef Essentials to a wide range of customers.

The operating results of all of our businesses have been, and will continue to be, affected by quarterly and annual fluctuations and market downturns due to a number of factors, such as pests and disease, weather patterns, changes in demand by consumers, the timing of the receipt, reduction, or cancellation of significant customer orders, the gain or loss of significant customers, market acceptance of our products, our ability to develop, introduce, and market new products on a timely basis, availability and cost of avocados and supplies from growers and vendors, new product introductions by our competitors, change in the mix of avocados and Calavo Foods and RFG products we sell, and general economic conditions. We believe, however, that we are currently positioned to address these risks and deliver favorable operating results for the foreseeable future.


Recent Developments

Dividend Payment

On December 12, 2013, we paid a $0.70 per share dividend in the aggregate amount of $11.0 million to shareholders of record on November 29, 2013.

Contingencies

From time to time, we are also involved in litigation arising in the ordinary course of our business that we do not believe will have a material adverse impact on our financial statements.

Amended and Restated Limited Liability Company Agreement of FreshRealm, LLC

Effective July 31, 2013, Calavo and certain noncontrolling members have entered into an Amended and Restated Limited Liability Company Agreement (the "Agreement") of FreshRealm, LLC (FreshRealm).

The purpose of FreshRealm is to engage in activities relating to the marketing of food products directly to consumers or other entities. FreshRealm's technology platform is currently being developed and is expected to allow participants such as traditional retailers, large and small enterprises, communities and food banks to enter into a platform resembling a national fresh food cooperative. FreshRealm will serve as a way to connect participants to a network of regional fresh food producers.

Pursuant to this Agreement, FreshRealm issued approximately 1.3 million units, with Calavo owning 71.5% of FreshRealm for a capital contribution of $0.9 million. The noncontrolling members, representing the remaining 28.5% ownership, contributed either cash (totaling approximately $0.1 million) or a full-recourse promissory note payable to Calavo (totaling approximately $0.3 million) in exchange for their units. The percentage interest of each member may be subject to pro rata adjustments through October 31, 2013 based on participation of the anticipated initial member group. Each full-recourse promissory note described above will be due and payable in full on May 1, 2016, with interest at 4% per annum, to be due on May 1, 2016. If, prior to May 1, 2016, FreshRealm terminates an employee's employment for cause, as defined, or the employee terminates his employment other than (A) for good reason, as defined, or (B) as a result of the employee's death or disability, notwithstanding whether prior to such date the employee repaid his note in full, then all of the employee's units will be transferred to Calavo.

Members have limited voting rights. In any matters presented to the members for approval, each member will have one vote for each unit held by such member. For situations for which the approval of the members is required, the members shall act by majority vote.

Members may make loans to FreshRealm with the consent of the board of directors of FreshRealm (the "FR Board"). The Board of Calavo Growers approved loans of up to $3,000,000 from Calavo to FreshRealm under the Line of Credit and Security Agreement between Calavo and FreshRealm.

Subject to certain limitations, the FR Board has the sole discretion regarding the amounts and timing of distributions to members. After making tax distributions required for a given fiscal year, all distributions will be made to the members pro rata, pari passu in accordance with their respective percentage interests, except FreshRealm will first apply distributions (other than tax distributions) to each member who is an employee against such member's promissory note until the promissory note is paid in full.

FreshRealm's losses and income that are determined for accounting purposes will also be allocated for each fiscal year, including for the full 2013 fiscal year, to the members in accordance with the allocation principles for net loss and net income. As a result, a $0.6 million loss has been allocated to the noncontrolling members as of October 31, 2013. See additional discussion below.

FreshRealm started operating as a development stage company in the second quarter of 2013. As of October 31, 2013, planned, principal operations have not commenced. As a result, FreshRealm has no sales or cost of sales. When principal operations commence, FreshRealm is expected to become our fourth segment. FreshRealm has incurred $1.9 million of expenses related to its development as of October 31, 2013, which are included in selling, general and administrative expenses. Of the $1.9 million in selling, general and administrative expenses, $1.3 million has been attributed to Calavo and a $0.6 million loss has been attributed to the noncontrolling members. We record the noncontrolling interest outside of permanent equity to highlight the potential future cash receivable related to this entity.


Amendment No.1 to RFG Acquisition Agreement

Effective July 31, 2013, Calavo, RFG and Liberty Fresh Foods, LLC, Kenneth Catchot, Cut Fruit, LLC, James Catchot, James Gibson, Jose O. Castillo, Donald L. Johnson and RFG Nominee Trust (collectively, the "Sellers") entered into Amendment No. 1 of the Agreement and Plan of Merger (the "Amendment").

Calavo, RFG and the Sellers are parties to an Agreement and Plan of Merger dated as of May 25, 2011 (the "Merger Agreement") pursuant to which, among other things, Calavo acquired RFG from the Sellers and Calavo agreed to make Earn-Out Payments to the Sellers upon the satisfaction of certain performance requirements specified in the Merger Agreement.

The Merger Agreement states that, upon the attainment of the Stage 2 Maximum Earn-Out Trigger prior to the end of the Earn-Out Period, Calavo shall be obligated to pay the Stage 2 Maximum Earn-Out Consideration to the Sellers. The Merger Agreement states that the Stage 2 Maximum Earn-Out Consideration shall be $5,000,000 in cash and 827,000 shares of Calavo common stock. The Merger Agreement states that the Stage 2 Maximum Earn-Out Trigger shall be met if, for any 12-month period during the Earn-Out Period, (1) the EBITDA for RFG is equal to or greater than $8,000,000 and (2) the Revenue for RFG is equal to or greater than $130,000,000.

Calavo, RFG and the Sellers have amended the Merger Agreement by the Amendment to provide, among other things, that: (1) Calavo shall deliver $5,000,000 of Common Stock to the Sellers, as part of the Stage 2 Maximum Earn-Out Consideration instead of delivering $5,000,000 of cash to the Sellers; (2) the Sellers shall receive specified price protection from Calavo with respect to the sale of such Common Stock; and (3) Calavo shall file with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") a Registration Statement on Form S-3 (the "Registration Statement") which shall cover the public resale of such Common Stock by the Sellers during the period specified in the Amendment.

During our fourth fiscal quarter, RFG attained the Stage 2 Maximum Earn-Out Trigger. As such, pursuant to this amendment, we filed the Registration Statement and issued 172,117 shares of common stock, valued at $29.05, to the Sellers in October 2013. From October 2013 to November 2013, the Sellers sold all 172,117 shares for $5.0 million.

Amendment No.2 to RFG Acquisition Agreement

Effective October 1, 2013, Calavo, RFG and Liberty Fresh Foods, LLC, Kenneth Catchot, Cut Fruit, LLC, James Catchot, James Gibson, Jose O. Castillo, Donald L. Johnson and RFG Nominee Trust (collectively, the "Sellers") entered into Amendment No. 2 of the Agreement and Plan of Merger (the "Second Amendment").

Calavo, RFG and the Sellers are parties to an Agreement and Plan of Merger dated as of May 25, 2011, as amended by Amendment No. 1 thereto, dated July 31, 2013 (as so amended the "Merger Agreement"), pursuant to which, among other things, Calavo acquired RFG from the Sellers and Calavo agreed to make Earn-Out Payments to the Sellers upon the satisfaction of certain performance requirements specified in the Merger Agreement.

The Merger Agreement provides that, upon the attainment of the Stage 3 Maximum Earn-Out Trigger or the Stage 3 Scale Earn-Out Trigger, as applicable, Calavo shall be obligated to make a Stage 3 Earn-Out Payment to the Sellers consisting of either the Stage 3 Maximum Earn-Out Consideration or the Stage 3 Scale Earn-Out Consideration, each of which shall consist of a specified amount of cash and a specified number of Merger Shares.

Pursuant to the Second Amendment, Calavo, RFG and the Sellers amended the Merger Agreement to provide, among other things, that: (1) with respect to the portion of the Stage 3 Maximum Earn-Out Consideration or the Stage 3 Scale Earn-Out Consideration, as applicable, that is currently required by the Merger Agreement to be paid in cash to the Sellers, Calavo shall have the right to elect to pay all or a portion of such cash amount by delivery of additional Merger Shares to the RFG Nominee Trust (the "Trust"), for the benefit of the Sellers; (2) the Sellers shall receive specified price protection from Calavo with respect to the Trust's sale of shares of Common Stock on the Nasdaq Stock Market, up to the total number of shares of Common Stock issued to the Trust pursuant to this Second Amendment; and (3) Calavo shall file with the SEC a Registration Statement on Form S-3 covering the Trust's resale on the Nasdaq Stock Market of any additional Merger Shares issued pursuant to the Second Amendment for sales that occur during the period specified in this Second Amendment. Any additional Merger Shares issued by Calavo in lieu of cash payments to the Sellers will be valued for this purpose at the closing price of Calavo Common Stock as reported on the Nasdaq Stock Market at the time of issuance.


Investment in Unconsolidated Entity

In October 2013, we contributed $1.0 million to the purchase of 60 hectares of property in Jalisco, Mexico, for the development of facilities to grow tomatoes. In the first quarter of 2014, we expect to enter into a joint venture agreement with Agricola Belher (Belher). Such joint venture is expected to operate under the name of Agricola Don Memo. Belher and Calavo are expected to have equal one-half ownership interests in Agricola Don Memo, but Belher will ultimately have overall management responsibility for the operations of Agricola Don Memo. The contribution of $1.0 million has been recorded as an investment in unconsolidated entities on our consolidated financial statements.

Critical Accounting Estimates

Our discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations are based upon our consolidated financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America. The preparation of these financial statements requires us to make estimates and judgments that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses. On an ongoing basis, we re-evaluate all of our estimates, including those related to the areas of customer and grower receivables, inventories, useful lives of property, plant and equipment, promotional allowances, income taxes, retirement benefits, and commitments and contingencies. We base our estimates on historical experience and on various other assumptions that are believed to be reasonable under the circumstances, the results of which form the basis for making judgments about the carrying values of assets and liabilities that are not readily apparent from other sources. Actual results may materially differ from these estimates under different assumptions or conditions as additional information becomes available in future periods.

Management has discussed the development and selection of critical accounting estimates with the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors and the Audit Committee has reviewed our disclosure relating to critical accounting estimates in this Annual Report.

We believe the following are the more significant judgments and estimates used in the preparation of our consolidated financial statements.

Promotional allowances. We provide for promotional allowances at the time of sale, based on our historical experience. Our estimates are generally based on evaluating the relationship between promotional allowances and gross sales. The derived percentage is then applied to the current period's sales revenues in order to arrive at the appropriate debit to sales allowances for the period. The offsetting credit is made to accrued liabilities. When certain amounts of specific customer accounts are subsequently identified as promotional, they are written off against this allowance. Actual amounts may differ from these estimates and such differences are recognized as an adjustment to net sales in the period they are identified. A 1% change in the derived percentage for the entire year would impact results of operations by approximately $0.6 million.

Income taxes. We account for deferred tax liabilities and assets for the future consequences of events that have been recognized in our consolidated financial statements or tax returns. Measurement of the deferred items is based on enacted tax laws. In the event the future consequences of differences between financial reporting bases and tax bases of our assets and liabilities result in a deferred tax asset, we perform an evaluation of the probability of being able to realize the future benefits indicated by such asset. A valuation allowance related to a deferred tax asset is recorded when it is more likely than not that some portion or all of the deferred tax asset will not be realized.

As a multinational corporation, we are subject to taxation in many jurisdictions, and the calculation of our tax liabilities involves dealing with uncertainties in the application of complex tax laws and regulations in various taxing jurisdictions. If we ultimately determine that the payment of these liabilities will be unnecessary, the liability will be reversed and we will recognize a tax benefit during the period in which it is determined the liability no longer applies. Conversely, we record additional tax charges in a period in which it is determined that a recorded tax liability is less than the ultimate assessment is expected to be.

The application of tax laws and regulations is subject to legal and factual interpretation, judgment and uncertainty. Tax laws and regulations themselves are subject to change as a result of changes in fiscal policy, changes in legislation, the evolution of regulations and court rulings. Therefore, the actual liability for U.S. or foreign taxes may be materially different from management's estimates, which could result in the need to record additional tax liabilities or potentially reverse previously recorded tax liabilities.

Goodwill and acquired intangible assets. Goodwill, defined as unidentified asset(s) acquired in conjunction with a business acquisition, is tested for impairment on an annual basis and between annual tests whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount may not be recoverable. Goodwill is tested at the reporting unit level, which is defined as an operating segment or one level below the operating segment. Goodwill impairment testing is a two-step process. The first step of the goodwill impairment test, used to identify potential impairment, compares the fair value of a reporting unit with its carrying amount,


including goodwill. If the fair value of a reporting unit exceeds its carrying amount, goodwill of the reporting unit is considered not impaired, and the second step of the impairment test would be unnecessary. If the carrying amount of a reporting unit exceeds its fair value, the second step of the goodwill impairment test must be performed to measure the amount of impairment loss, if any. The second step of the goodwill impairment test, used to measure the amount of impairment loss, compares the implied fair value of reporting unit goodwill with the carrying amount of that goodwill. If the carrying amount of reporting unit goodwill exceeds the implied fair value of that goodwill, an impairment loss must be recognized in an amount equal to that excess. Goodwill impairment testing requires significant judgment and management estimates, including, but not limited to, the determination of (i) the number of reporting units, (ii) the goodwill and other assets and liabilities to be allocated to the reporting units and (iii) the fair values of the reporting units. The estimates and assumptions described above, along with other factors such as discount rates, will significantly affect the outcome of the impairment tests and the amounts of any resulting impairment losses. We performed our annual assessment of goodwill and determined that no impairment existed as of October 31, 2013.

Contingent consideration: Each period, we revalue our contingent consideration obligations to their fair value and record increases or decreases in the fair value into selling, general and administrative expense. Increases or decreases in the fair value of the contingent consideration obligations can result from changes in the assumed timing and amount of revenue and expense estimates, changes in the probability of payment scenarios, as well as changes in capital market conditions, which impact the discount rate used in the fair valuation. Significant judgment is employed in determining the appropriateness of these assumptions as of the acquisition date and for each subsequent period. Accordingly, future business and economic conditions, as well as changes in any of the assumptions described above, can materially impact the amount of contingent consideration expense we record in any given period. We have amended our acquisition agreement with RFG in regards to the cash payment portion of the Stage II & III earnouts. We no longer will pay cash, but rather in the form of shares of our common stock. We recorded revalue adjustments of $1.8 million in fiscal 2013 and the entire liability of $4.2 million has been reclassified to additional paid in capital. Total net decrease to the contingent considerations in fiscal year 2012 totaled $0.4 million. See Note 16 to our consolidated financial statements for further information.

Allowance for accounts receivable. We provide an allowance for estimated uncollectible accounts receivable balances based on historical experience and the aging of the related accounts receivable. If the financial condition of our customers were to deteriorate, resulting in an impairment of their ability to make payments, additional allowances may be required.

Results of Operations

The following table sets forth certain items from our consolidated statements of income, expressed as percentages of our total net sales, for the periods indicated:

                                                   Year ended October 31,
                                              2013          2012          2011
       Net sales                               100.0 %       100.0 %       100.0 %
       Gross margins                             8.7 %        11.0 %         8.2 %
       Selling, general and administrative       5.1 %         6.0 %         4.7 %
       Operating income                          3.6 %         5.0 %         3.5 %
       Interest income                           0.0 %         0.0 %         0.0 %
       Interest expense                         (0.2 )%       (0.2 )%       (0.2 )%
       Other income, net                         0.1 %         0.2 %         0.0 %
       Net income                                2.4 %         3.1 %         2.1 %

Net Sales

We believe that the fundamentals for our products continue to be favorable. Firstly, Americans continue to eat more avocados. United States (U.S.) avocado demand continues to grow, with per capita use in 2011/12 reaching 5.0 pounds per person, up 25 percent from the previous year, and approximately double the estimate of a decade ago. We believe that the healthy eating trend that has been developing in the United States contributes to such growth, as avocados, which are cholesterol and sodium free, are dense in fiber, vitamin B6, antioxidants, potassium, folate, and contain unsaturated fat, which help lower cholesterol. Also, a growing number of research studies seem to suggest that phytonutrients, which avocados are rich in, help fight chronic illnesses, such as heart disease and cancer.

Additionally, we believe that the demographic changes in the U.S. will greatly impact the consumption of avocados and avocado-based products. The Hispanic community currently accounts for approximately 17% of the U.S. population, and the total number of Hispanics is estimated to triple by the year 2050. Avocados are considered a staple item purchased by Hispanic consumers, as the per-capita avocado consumption in Mexico is considered significantly higher than that of the U.S.


We anticipate avocado products will further penetrate the United States marketplace driven by year-round availability of fresh avocados due to imports, a rapidly growing Hispanic population, and the promotion of the health benefits of avocados. As the largest marketer of avocado products in the United States, we believe that we are well positioned to leverage this trend and to grow our Fresh products and Calavo Foods segments of our business. Additionally, we also believe that avocados and avocado based products will further penetrate other marketplaces that we currently operate in, as interest in avocados continues to expand.

In October 2002, the USDA announced the creation of a Hass Avocado Board to promote the sale of Hass variety avocados in the U.S. marketplace. This board provides a basis for a unified funding of promotional activities based on an assessment on all avocados sold in the U.S. marketplace. The California Avocado Commission, which receives its funding from California avocado growers, has historically shouldered the promotional and advertising costs supporting avocado sales. We believe that the incremental funding of promotional and advertising programs in the U.S. will, in the long term, positively impact average selling prices and will favorably impact our avocado businesses. During fiscal 2013, 2012 and 2011, on behalf of avocado growers, we remitted approximately $2.0 million, $0.9 million and $1.8 million to the California Avocado Commission. During fiscal 2013, 2012 and 2011, we remitted approximately $8.0 million, $5.7 million and $4.8 million to the Hass Avocado Board related to avocados. . . .

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