Federal Signal Reports Strong Fourth Quarter Results and Positive Outlook for 2021

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Oak Brook, Illinois, February 25, 2021 — Federal Signal Corporation (NYSE:FSS), a leader in environmental and safety solutions, today reported results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2020. 

Fourth Quarter Highlights

  • Q4 net sales of $295 million
  • Operating margin of 11.5%, compared to 11.6% last year
  • Adjusted EBITDA margin of 15.9%, up from 15.4% last year
  • GAAP EPS of $0.42
  • Adjusted EPS of $0.44
  • Orders of $276 million, up $10 million, or 4%, compared to the third quarter of 2020
  • Operating cash flow of $57 million, up 27% from last year
  • $82 million of cash and $280 million of credit facility availability at end of year
  • 2021 adjusted EPS* outlook of $1.73 to $1.85

Consolidated net sales for the fourth quarter were $295 million, compared to $314 million in the same quarter a year ago. Income from continuing operations for the fourth quarter was $26.0 million, equal to $0.42 per diluted share, compared to $29.7 million, or $0.48 per share, in the prior-year quarter. The Company also reported adjusted income from continuing operations for the fourth quarter of $27.2 million, equal to $0.44 per diluted share, compared to $29.5 million, or $0.48 per share, in the same quarter a year ago. The Company is reporting adjusted results to facilitate comparisons of underlying performance on a year-over-year basis. A reconciliation of these and other non-GAAP measures is provided at the conclusion of this news release.

Consolidated net sales for the year ended December 31, 2020 were $1.13 billion, compared to $1.22 billion in the prior year. Income from continuing operations for the year was $96.1 million, equal to $1.56 per diluted share, compared to $108.4 million, or $1.76 per share, in the prior year. Adjusted income from continuing operations for the year was $103.0 million, equal to $1.67 per diluted share, compared to $110.1 million, or $1.79 per diluted share, in the prior year.

Impressive Operational Performance Despite Ongoing Disruptions; Group Margins Exceeds Target Range, and Orders Again Improve Sequentially

“We had a strong finish to 2020, a year in which we delivered the second highest adjusted EPS* in our history. Our teams continue to prioritize the safety of our employees, while demonstrating excellent operational execution in challenging circumstances,” commented Jennifer L. Sherman, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Both of our groups delivered margin performance in excess of their target ranges, contributing to a consolidated adjusted EBITDA margin of approximately 16%. Demand for our products and services remained healthy, and we again reported sequential quarterly order improvement.”

In the Environmental Solutions Group, net sales for the fourth quarter were $238 million, compared to $252 million in the prior-year quarter, while in the Safety and Security Systems Group, net sales of $57 million, compared to $62 million in the prior-year quarter.

Consolidated operating income for the fourth quarter was $33.8 million, compared to $36.4 million in the prior-year quarter. Consolidated operating margin was 11.5%, compared to 11.6% last year.

Consolidated adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (“adjusted EBITDA”) for the fourth quarter was $47.0 million, compared to $48.5 million in the prior-year quarter, and consolidated adjusted EBITDA margin improved to 15.9%, compared to 15.4% last year.

Adjusted EBITDA in the Environmental Solutions Group was $44.2 million, up from $43.8 million in the prior-year quarter, and its adjusted EBITDA margin was 18.6%, up from 17.4% last year. Within the Safety and Security Systems Group, adjusted EBITDA was $11.2 million, compared to $12.6 million in the prior-year quarter, and its adjusted EBITDA margin was 19.6%, compared to 20.3% last year.

Consolidated backlog at December 31, 2020 was $304 million.

Strong Q4 Cash Flow Supports Debt Pay Down, Organic Growth Investment, M&A and Cash Returns to Shareholders

Net cash of $57 million was generated from operations in the fourth quarter, up $12 million, or 27%, compared to $45 million in the prior-year quarter. For the year ended December 31, 2020, operating cash flow totaled $136 million, an increase of $33 million, or 32%, compared to the prior year. 

At December 31, 2020, total debt was $210 million, total cash and cash equivalents were $82 million and the Company had $280 million of availability for borrowings under its current credit facility, which was executed in July 2019.

“Our cash flow generation this quarter was outstanding, allowing us to pay down over $30 million of debt in the quarter, and fund ongoing investments in our facility expansion projects. Our financial position remains strong, providing us with significant financial flexibility to invest in organic growth initiatives, pursue strategic acquisitions, like the recently announced acquisition of OSW, and fund cash returns to shareholders,” said Sherman.

The Company funded dividends of $4.9 million during the fourth quarter, bringing the total for the year to $19.4 million, and as recently announced, the Board of Directors increased the dividend that will be payable in the first quarter of 2021 to $0.09 per share dividend, a 13% increase from the prior dividend.

Outlook

“As we look ahead to 2021, we are encouraged by conditions in our end markets, the ongoing execution against our strategic initiatives, and the improvement in order trends that we have seen during the fourth quarter and so far this year,” noted Sherman. “We are also closely monitoring the potential for economic stimulus and increased investment in U.S. infrastructure under the new administration, and have positioned ourselves to be prepared for further recovery in market conditions. With this momentum, we are expecting a strong 2021, with top-line growth, double-digit improvement in pre-tax earnings, and adjusted EPS* of between $1.73 and $1.85.”

CONFERENCE CALL

Federal Signal will host its fourth quarter earnings conference call on Thursday, February 25, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time. The call will last approximately one hour. The call may be accessed over the internet through Federal Signal’s website at www.federalsignal.com or by dialing phone number 1-877-705-6003 and entering the pin number 13716478. An archived replay will be available on Federal Signal’s website shortly after the call.

About Federal Signal

Federal Signal Corporation (NYSE: FSS) builds and delivers equipment of unmatched quality that moves material, cleans infrastructure, and protects the communities where we work and live. Founded in 1901, Federal Signal is a leading global designer, manufacturer and supplier of products and total solutions that serve municipal, governmental, industrial and commercial customers. Headquartered in Oak Brook, Ill., with manufacturing facilities worldwide, the Company operates two groups: Environmental Solutions and Safety and Security Systems. For more information on Federal Signal, visit: www.federalsignal.com.

“Safe Harbor” Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995

This release contains unaudited financial information and various forward-looking statements as of the date hereof and we undertake no obligation to update these forward-looking statements regardless of new developments or otherwise. Statements in this release that are not historical are forward-looking statements. Such statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to vary materially from those stated. Such risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to: direct and indirect impacts of the coronavirus pandemic and the associated government response, economic conditions in various regions, product and price competition, supply chain disruptions, work stoppages, availability and pricing of raw materials, risks associated with acquisitions such as integration of operations and achieving anticipated revenue and cost benefits, foreign currency exchange rate changes, interest rate changes, increased legal expenses and litigation results, legal and regulatory developments and other risks and uncertainties described in filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Contact: Ian Hudson, Chief Financial Officer, +1-630-954-2000, ihudson@federalsignal.com

* Adjusted earnings per share (“EPS”) is a non-GAAP measure, which includes certain adjustments to reported GAAP income from continuing operations and diluted EPS. In 2020, we made adjustments to exclude the impact of acquisition and integration-related expenses, pension-related charges, restructuring activity, coronavirus-related expenses and purchase accounting effects, where applicable. We have also previously made adjustments to GAAP income from continuing operations and diluted EPS for special tax items. Should any similar items occur in 2021, we would expect to exclude them from the determination of adjusted EPS. However, because of the underlying uncertainty in quantifying amounts which may not yet be known, a reconciliation of our Adjusted EPS outlook to the most applicable GAAP measure is excluded based on the unreasonable efforts exception in Item 10(e)(1)(i)(B).

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