SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Peter Silva, Kevin Jackson, Jessica Qiu, Dana Gardner, Dan Stolts

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Oil-Dri Announces Record Sales for Second Quarter and First Six-Months of Fiscal 2014

CHICAGO, IL -- (Marketwired) -- 03/11/14 -- Oil-Dri Corporation of America (NYSE: ODC) today announced net sales of $69,305,000 for the second quarter ended January 31, 2014, a 13% increase compared with net sales of $61,122,000 in the same quarter one year ago. Net income for the second quarter was $4,281,000, or $0.60 per diluted share, up 94% from net income of $2,146,000, or $0.31 per diluted share, for the same quarter of fiscal 2013.

Net sales for the six-month period were $132,851,000, an 8% increase compared with net sales of $122,539,000 in the same period one year ago. Net income for the six-month period was $7,168,000, or $1.01 per diluted share, up 7% from net income of $6,598,000, or $0.94 per diluted share, in the same period of fiscal 2013.

Net income was up in both periods due to increased sales and decreased selling, general and administrative expenses, including advertising. Net income was adversely impacted by increased costs, predominately the rising cost of natural gas. Compared to fiscal 2013, the cost of natural gas used increased 28% in the quarter and 33% for the first six months.

Business Review

President and Chief Executive Officer Daniel S. Jaffee said, "We are pleased to report record sales results for the quarter and six-month period. Strong growth occurred in many of our market areas. For example, demand increased for our Pure-Flo bleaching earth and Calibrin animal health products. This demand is consistent with the continued global growth of vegetable oils and fats as well as livestock consumption.

"Additionally, sales of Cat's Pride Fresh & Light grew 60% in the second quarter versus the same quarter last year, contributing to an 18% increase in overall branded cat litter sales. Private label cat litter sales also increased significantly in the second quarter driven primarily by the previously reported acquisition of certain assets of MFM Industries, Inc. ('MFM') on November 1, 2013. New private label cat litter sales to MFM-related customers accounted for more than $3,000,000 in sales for the quarter.

"Our team united to effectively meet the challenge of servicing the business and customers we acquired in the MFM acquisition which occurred at the beginning of the quarter."

Segment Review


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
     Business to Business              Second Quarter
            Products               November 1 - January 31        Change
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 Fiscal 2014    Fiscal 2013
           Net Sales             $25,264,000    $21,715,000        16%
         Segment Income           $7,993,000     $7,101,000        13%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

The increase in net sales of Business to Business products in the second quarter can be attributed to a favorable product mix, higher selling prices and a 3% volume increase. Segment income was positively impacted by improved sales, but limited by increases in materials and freight costs. Net sales of Pure-Flo and Select fluids purification products were up in both domestic and foreign markets, as were sales of Calibrin bacterial and fungal toxin binders, which are sold in foreign markets. Sales of Agsorb used as agricultural chemical carriers increased while co-packaged coarse cat litter sales were down slightly.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
     Business to Business                Six Months
            Products                August 1 - January 31         Change
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 Fiscal 2014    Fiscal 2013
           Net Sales             $49,179,000    $43,497,000        13%
         Segment Income          $15,644,000    $14,624,000         7%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

The increase in net sales for the segment in the six-month period can also be attributed to a favorable product mix, higher selling prices and a 3% volume increase. Segment income increased from one year ago due to improved sales, but was again adversely impacted by materials, freight and packaging costs. Net sales of fluids purification and animal health products led the growth, including increased sales of Calibrin broad-spectrum toxin binders. Agsorb carriers sold to corn rootworm pesticide producers were also up and co-packaged coarse cat litter sales were down slightly compared to the first six months of fiscal 2013.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Retail and Wholesale             Second Quarter
            Products               November 1 - January 31        Change
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 Fiscal 2014    Fiscal 2013
            Net Sales            $44,041,000    $39,407,000        12%
         Segment Income           $2,982,000     $1,936,000        54%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

The increase in net sales of Retail and Wholesale products in the second quarter can be attributed to a 15% increase in volume but was partially offset by increased trade spending. Private label cat litter sales increased approximately 24% due to additional sales from the acquisition of MFM. Net sales of industrial absorbents and for our foreign subsidiaries were down. Segment income increased due to higher sales and lower advertising and promotional expenses, and was decreased by packaging and materials costs. Income was also reduced by higher manufacturing costs and lower margins on private label products.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Retail and Wholesale               Six Months
            Products                August 1 - January 31         Change
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 Fiscal 2014    Fiscal 2013
           Net Sales             $83,672,000    $79,042,000         6%
         Segment Income           $4,257,000     $6,460,000        -34%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

The increase in net sales for the segment in the first six months can be attributed to a 6% increase in volume from one year ago but was partially offset by an increase in trade spending. Private label cat litter sales increased approximately 5% due to additional sales from the MFM acquisition. Sales declined for industrial absorbents and for our foreign subsidiaries. Segment income was reduced by an approximate 5% increase in costs for packaging, freight and materials and by higher selling, general and administrative expenses, including sales commissions. Income was also reduced by higher manufacturing costs and lower margins on private label products.

Financial Review

The MFM acquisition, along with the payment of the annual incentive bonus, repayments of notes payable and quarterly dividends were the primary reasons for the reduction of cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash and short-term investments to $19,682,000 at January 31, 2014.

Capital expenditures for the six-month period totaled $6,782,000, which was $1,922,000 more than depreciation and amortization of $4,860,000. Capital expenditures were made for equipment replacement at our manufacturing facilities and capacity expansion projects. Capital expenditures were $5,009,000 for the first six-months of fiscal 2013.

Cash provided by operating activities was $2,400,000 in the first six months of fiscal 2014, which was lower than the $10,811,000 in the first six months of fiscal 2013. The primary reason for the change between years was an increase in inventory and accounts receivable associated with higher sales and a decrease in accrued expenses.

On December 11, 2013, Oil-Dri's Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.19 per share of outstanding Common Stock and $0.1425 per share of outstanding Class B Stock. The dividends were paid on March 7, 2014 to stockholders of record at the close of business on Friday, February 21, 2014. The Company has paid cash dividends continuously since 1974 and has increased dividends annually for each of the past ten years.

At the end of the second quarter, the annualized dividend yield on the Company's Common Stock was 2.2%, based on the quarter's closing stock price of $34.35 per share and an annual cash dividend of $0.76.

Looking Forward

Jaffee continued, "We believe net income for the second half of fiscal 2014 will be negatively impacted by cost pressures. This expectation is based on the assumptions that higher natural gas and other manufacturing costs will persist throughout fiscal 2014 and our effective tax rate for the year will be closer to historic norms rather than the approximate 17% reported for the full year of fiscal 2013. We also have a robust marketing program for Cat's Pride Fresh & Light planned for the back half of the year and accordingly annual advertising and promotional spending is expected to be higher than in fiscal 2013.

"In spite of the expected effect of these items on earnings in fiscal 2014, we are very optimistic going forward as the second half of the year will be a busy and exciting period. We anticipate the completion of the capacity expansion project for our fluids purification products, the grand opening of Amlan Trading (Shenzhen) Company, Ltd. and the introduction of Varium, our new animal gut health product."

Oil-Dri Corporation of America is a leading supplier of specialty sorbent products for agricultural, horticultural, fluids purification, specialty markets, industrial and automotive, and is the world's largest manufacturer of cat litter.

The Company will offer a live webcast of the second quarter earnings teleconference on Wednesday, March 12, 2014 from 10:00 am to 10:30 am, Central Time. To listen via the web, visit www.streetevents.com or www.oildri.com. An archived recording of the call and written transcripts of all teleconferences are posted on the Oil-Dri website.

Agsorb, Amlan, Calibrin, Cat's Pride, Fresh & Light, Pure-Flo and Select are registered trademarks of Oil-Dri Corporation of America. Varium is a trademark of Oil-Dri Corporation of America.

Oil-Dri Corporation of America is a leading supplier of specialty sorbent products for agricultural, horticultural, fluids purification, specialty markets, industrial and automotive, and is the world's largest manufacturer of cat litter.

Certain statements in this press release, including the reasons for comparisons between fiscal 2014 and 2013 earnings, may contain forward-looking statements that are based on our current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections about our future performance, our business, our beliefs, and our management's assumptions. In addition, we, or others on our behalf, may make forward-looking statements in other press releases or written statements, or in our communications and discussions with investors and analysts in the normal course of business through meetings, webcasts, phone calls, and conference calls. Words such as "expect," "outlook," "forecast," "would", "could," "should," "project," "intend," "plan," "continue," "believe," "seek," "estimate," "anticipate, "may," "assume," variations of such words and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements, which are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.

Such statements are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions that could cause actual results to differ materially including, but not limited to, the dependence of our future growth and financial performance on successful new product introductions, intense competition in our markets, volatility of our quarterly results, risks associated with acquisitions, our dependence on a limited number of customers for a large portion of our net sales and other risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are described in Item 1A (Risk Factors) of our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and other reports we file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Should one or more of these or other risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, our actual results may vary materially from those anticipated, intended, expected, believed, estimated, projected or planned. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Except to the extent required by law, we do not have any intention or obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statements after the distribution of this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in assumptions, or otherwise.


Consolidated Statements of Income
(in thousands, except for per share amounts)
(unaudited)
                                       Second Quarter Ended January 31,
                                   ----------------------------------------
                                                % of                 % of
                                      2014      Sales      2013      Sales
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------
Net Sales                          $  69,305     100.0% $  61,122     100.0%
Cost of Sales                        (52,412)     75.6%   (44,853)     73.4%
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------
Gross Profit                          16,893      24.4%    16,269      26.6%
Operating Expenses                   (11,159)     16.1%   (12,834)     21.0%
Capacity Rationalization Charges          --       0.0%       (50)      0.1%
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------

Operating Income                       5,734       8.3%     3,385       5.5%
Interest Expense                        (385)      0.6%      (446)      0.7%
Other Income                             181      -0.3%        92      -0.2%
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------

Income Before Income Taxes             5,530       8.0%     3,031       5.0%
Income Taxes                          (1,249)      1.8%      (885)      1.4%
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------
Net Income                         $   4,281       6.2% $   2,146       3.5%
                                   =========  ========  =========  ========

Net Income Per Share:
  Basic Common                     $    0.65            $    0.33
  Basic Class B Common             $    0.49            $    0.25
  Diluted                          $    0.60            $    0.31

Average Shares Outstanding:
  Basic Common                         4,979                4,896
  Basic Class B Common                 2,005                1,976
  Diluted                              7,007                6,922

                                         Six Months Ended January 31,
                                   ----------------------------------------
                                                % of                 % of
                                      2014      Sales      2013      Sales
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------
Net Sales                          $ 132,851     100.0% $ 122,539     100.0%
Cost of Sales                        (99,458)     74.9%   (89,039)     72.7%
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------
Gross Profit                          33,393      25.1%    33,500      27.3%
Operating Expenses                   (23,317)     17.6%   (23,654)     19.3%
Capacity Rationalization Charges          --       0.0%       (62)      0.1%
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------

Operating Income                      10,076       7.6%     9,784       8.0%
Interest Expense                        (809)      0.6%      (927)      0.8%
Other Income                             156      -0.1%       231      -0.2%
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------

Income Before Income Taxes             9,423       7.1%     9,088       7.4%
Income Taxes                          (2,255)      1.7%    (2,490)      2.0%
                                   ---------  --------  ---------  --------
Net Income                         $   7,168       5.4% $   6,598       5.4%
                                   =========  ========  =========  ========

Net Income Per Share:
  Basic Common                     $    1.09            $    1.02
  Basic Class B Common             $    0.82            $    0.77
  Diluted                          $    1.01            $    0.94

Average Shares Outstanding:
  Basic Common                         4,967                4,887
  Basic Class B Common                 1,999                1,960
  Diluted                              6,991                6,904


Consolidated Balance Sheets
(in thousands, except for per share amounts)
(unaudited)
                                                        As of January 31,
                                                     -----------------------
                                                         2014        2013
                                                     ----------- -----------
Current Assets
    Cash and Cash Equivalents                        $    12,082 $    25,430
    Restricted Cash                                          500          --
    Short-term Investments                                 7,100      10,388
    Accounts Receivable, net                              37,022      31,004
    Inventories                                           22,734      22,186
    Prepaid Expenses                                       9,915       8,169
                                                     ----------- -----------
        Total Current Assets                              89,353      97,177
                                                     ----------- -----------
Property, Plant and Equipment, Net                        68,959      65,117
Other Assets                                              25,548      14,124
                                                     ----------- -----------
Total Assets                                         $   183,860 $   176,418
                                                     =========== ===========

Current Liabilities
    Current Maturities of Notes Payable              $     3,500 $     5,000
    Accounts Payable                                       7,699       6,172
    Dividends Payable                                      1,242          --
    Accrued Expenses                                      16,686      18,223
                                                     ----------- -----------
        Total Current Liabilities                         29,127      29,395
                                                     ----------- -----------
Noncurrent Liabilities
    Notes Payable                                         18,900      22,400
    Other Noncurrent Liabilities                          27,775      34,782
                                                     ----------- -----------
        Total Noncurrent Liabilities                      46,675      57,182
                                                     ----------- -----------
Stockholders' Equity                                     108,058      89,841
                                                     ----------- -----------
Total Liabilities and Stockholders' Equity           $   183,860 $   176,418
                                                     =========== ===========

Book Value Per Share Outstanding                     $     15.51 $     13.12

Acquisitions of
Property, Plant and
 Equipment               Second Quarter              $     3,400 $     2,852
                         Year to Date                $     6,782 $     5,009
Depreciation and
 Amortization Charges    Second Quarter              $     2,629 $     2,220
                         Year to Date                $     4,860 $     4,475


Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows
(in thousands)
(unaudited)

                                                   For the Six Months Ended
                                                          January 31,
                                                   ------------------------
Cash Flows From Operating Activities                   2014         2013
                                                   -----------  -----------

Net Income                                         $     7,168  $     6,598

Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash
 provided by operating activities, net of
 acquisition:
  Depreciation and Amortization                          4,860        4,475
  Capacity Rationalization Plan Charges                     --           62
  Increase in Accounts Receivable                       (5,919)        (812)
  Increase in Inventories                               (1,347)      (2,513)
  Increase (Decrease) in Accounts Payable                  381         (168)
  (Decrease) Increase in Accrued Expenses               (3,558)         690
  Increase in Pension and Postretirement Benefits          528          882
  Other                                                    287        1,597
                                                   -----------  -----------
    Total Adjustments                                   (4,768)       4,213
                                                   -----------  -----------
  Net Cash Provided by Operating Activities              2,400       10,811
                                                   -----------  -----------

Cash Flows From Investing Activities
  Capital Expenditures                                  (6,782)      (5,009)
  Acquisition of Business                              (12,505)          --
  Restricted Cash                                         (500)          --
  Net Dispositions (Purchases) of Investment
   Securities                                           11,361       (1,222)
  Other                                                     16           34
                                                   -----------  -----------
  Net Cash Used in Investing Activities                 (8,410)      (6,197)
                                                   -----------  -----------

Cash Flows From Financing Activities
  Principal Payments on Long-Term Debt                  (3,500)      (2,300)
  Dividends Paid                                        (2,478)      (4,630)
  Purchase of Treasury Stock                               (13)        (175)
  Other                                                     72          852
                                                   -----------  -----------
  Net Cash Used in Financing Activities                 (5,919)      (6,253)
                                                   -----------  -----------

Effect of exchange rate changes on cash and cash
 equivalents                                               (24)         (24)

Net Decrease in Cash and Cash Equivalents              (11,953)      (1,663)
Cash and Cash Equivalents, Beginning of Period          24,035       27,093
                                                   -----------  -----------
Cash and Cash Equivalents, End of Period           $    12,082  $    25,430
                                                   ===========  ===========

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