Headlined by its diverse portfolio, including Checkpoint's RFID systems, CCL Industries Inc. reported fourth quarter and annual financial results for 2020.
Sales for the fourth quarter of 2020 increased 5.7% to $1,350.6 million, compared to $1,277.9 million for the fourth quarter of 2019. Operating income for the fourth quarter of 2020 increased 22.7% to $213.3 million compared to $173.9 million for the comparable quarter of 2019.
Net earnings increased 39.8% to $145.9 million for the 2020 fourth quarter compared to $104.4 million for the 2019 fourth quarter.
For the year ending Dec. 31, 2020, sales declined 1.5% to $5.2 billion, but operating income and net income improved 4.6% and 11% to $823.5 million and $529.7 million, respectively, compared to 2019.
The year ending Dec. 31, 2020, included results from 15 acquisitions completed since Jan. 1, 2019, delivering acquisition-related sales growth for the period of 2.1%.
“We moved from a deep trough in the second quarter yet ended 2020 with record earnings, exceeding $0.5 billion for the first time with free cash flow leapfrogging them to an all-time high of $616 million,” said Geoffrey T. Martin, president and CEO. “We have again proven the advantage of a diverse portfolio; both products and geographies, that I am sure will serve us equally well as the world gradually returns to normal in the coming years.
“CCL Segment performance was robust for the fourth quarter, as 7.4% organic growth drove a 220 basis point improvement in operating margin,” added Martin. “Strong sales momentum at CCL Design, CCL Secure and Healthcare & Specialty continued on pandemic boosted end-market demand, resulting in significant profitability gains. Food & Beverage growth returned overall, with strong profit gains for sleeves and labels sold in the wine & spirits, beer and soft drinks sectors. Solid Home & Personal Care results in the U.S., Europe and Latin America offset currency devaluations, soft demand in ASEAN countries and a slow performance at our US aerosols business, also impacted by capacity building costs at the aluminum slug plant.
“Our label joint ventures in Russia and the Middle East delivered record earnings,” he added. “Checkpoint profitability improved on strong gains in apparel labeling including growth in RFID, and the mixing effect of a higher-margin label and tag sales in MAS offsetting slower sales of lower-margin hardware. Cost-saving initiatives continue to augment results.”