Reorganization lifts Ballantyne Strong's outlook

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Posted: Saturday, March 15, 2014 12:00 am

Omaha cinema, screen and lighting services firm Ballantyne Strong ended its fiscal year with a small profit and said a reorganization of its business will allow for efficiency and growth to come.

The firm on Friday reported 2013 net earnings of $163,000, or a penny per share, compared with $5.5 million, or 39 cents per share, in 2012. Excluding costs related to the October acquisition of Convergent Media Systems, the firm said it had net income of $2.6 million, or 19 cents per share.

Net revenues were $103.6 million, compared with $169.1 million in 2012.

For the fourth quarter, Ballantyne Strong reported a net loss of $1.7 million, or 12 cents per share, compared with net income of $1.6 million, or 11 cents per share, a year ago. Excluding costs related to the acquisition and a one-time income tax charge, the firm reported net income of $600,000, or 4 cents per share.

CEO Gary Cavey said several large international orders for digital projectors brought the year to a “strong finish.”

Ballantyne Strong said it has reorganized its company, which traditionally provided cinema equipment, to include services such as video security and digital screen messaging.

It is now operating in two segments, the firm said Friday. Its managed services segment includes digital technology services. A systems integration segment includes products and services for cinemas, video-based security systems and specialty lighting.

A recent agreement to become a reseller of video security solutions will mean more maintenance and monitoring contract opportunities ahead in 2014, Cavey said.

Ballantyne Strong also is expanding its sales force in an effort to build the Convergent business, which provides digital signage and business video services to clients, including grocery stores and other retailers.

“The sales cycle is very long for digital media projects, and it will take some time to build our sales pipeline, but we are excited about the long-term growth opportunities in this business,” he said.

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