Frozen Food Express Industries, Inc. Announces Improved Fourth Quarter and 2010 Year End Results

/ Source: GlobeNewswire

DALLAS, Feb. 15, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Frozen Food Express Industries, Inc. (Nasdaq:FFEX) today announced its financial and operating results for the quarter and year ended December 31, 2010. Highlights for the year include:

  • Operating losses for the 4th Quarter of 2010, are $1.9 million, an improvement versus the 4th Quarter of 2009 of $3.1 million; a 62.1% improvement.
  • Operating losses for the year improved by $7.2 million versus 2009; a 29.1% improvement.
  • Total operating revenue for the 4th Quarter increased 3.0% to $94.2 million from $91.4 million in the 4th Quarter of 2009.
  • Total operating revenue for 2010 was $368.8 million compared to $373.1 million in 2009.
  • Operating expenses decreased 2.9% or $11.5 million to $386.5 million compared to $398.0 million in 2009.
  • Net loss improved 27.3% or $4.5 million to $11.9 million versus $16.4 million in 2009.
  • Continued focus on cost control resulted in an operating ratio improvement of 1.9% to 104.8% compared to 106.7% in 2009.
  • Net loss per share of diluted common stock improved 28.1% to ($0.69) versus ($0.96) in 2009.

For the year ended December 31, 2010, total operating revenue decreased 1.1% or $4.2 million. Total operating revenue, net of fuel surcharges, decreased 5.1% or $16.8 million, to $311.4 million from $328.2 million in 2009 due largely to an 8.0% reduction in average trucks in service. The net loss for the year improved 27.3% to $11.9 million or ($.69) per diluted share compared to $16.4 million or ($.96) per diluted share in 2009.

For the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2010, total operating revenue increased $2.7 million to $94.2 million compared to $91.4 million in the same period of last year. Total operating revenue excluding fuel surcharges was comparable to last year at $78.6 million. The net loss for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2010 improved 41.6% or $1.1 million to $1.5 million or ($0.09) per diluted share compared to $2.6 million or ($0.15) per diluted share last year.

Stoney M. ("Mit") Stubbs, the Company's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer commented, "Despite continued economic challenges, our truckload services continued to support stronger rates and deliver improved utility. We are pleased that our truckload revenue per total mile has held steady since rate increases taken at the end of the first quarter of this year. LTL services continue to benefit from increased focus on improved service dynamics. We've grown LTL tonnage by 5.0% this year compared to last, however we've seen that this part of the market continues to be very competitive in rates. We believe our improved service offering and nationwide footprint will allow us to command stronger rates in the future."

Asset productivity (measured by revenue per truck per week) improved 2.9% to $3,221.00 for 2010 compared to $3,129.00 in 2009. Russell Stubbs, the Company's President commented that, "A key challenge in this market is to increase seated drivers to provide us the benefit of incremental revenue.  We ended 2010 with an average weekly trucks in service number of 1,782 trucks, which was 155 trucks less than our 2009 average. We will grow our truckload revenue in 2011 by correcting this shortage. We have recently opened the FFE Driving Academy to allow us to train and develop new truck driving professionals and have also invested in our existing driver development infrastructure to support increased driver recruitment efforts. This combined with a new, more robust contractor lease program will give us the additional capacity needed in this market to grow our revenue in 2011.  We expect these enhancements will significantly improve our ability to add qualified drivers to our existing fleet and take advantage of opportunities in the truckload marketplace."

Mit Stubbs concluded, "We believe that despite the challenges from continued weakness in the economy, our employees have maintained their resolve to improve key elements of our business model such as improved service metrics, higher truck utility and tonnage growth from our LTL services, each of which will allow us to continue to improve our operating performance." 

About FFEX

Frozen Food Express Industries, Inc. is one of the leading temperature-controlled truckload and less-than-truckload carriers in the United States with core operations in the transport of temperature-controlled products and perishable goods including food, health care and confectionery products. Service is offered in over-the-road and intermodal modes for temperature-controlled truckload and less-than-truckload, as well as dry truckload. We also provide brokerage/logistics and dedicated services to our customers. Additional information about Frozen Food Express Industries, Inc. can be found at . To join our email alert list, please click on the following link: . The Company's common stock is traded on the Nasdaq Global Select market under the symbol FFEX.

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Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains certain statements that may be considered forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements include statements relating to plans, strategies, objectives, expectations, intentions, and adequacy of resources, and may be identified by words such as "will", "could", "should", "believe", "expect", "intend", "plan", "schedule", "estimate", "project", and similar expressions. Those statements are based on current expectations and are subject to uncertainty and change. Although our management believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, there can be no assurance that such expectations will be realized. Should one or more of the risks or uncertainties underlying such expectations not materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those expected.

Among the key factors that are not within our management's control and that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in such forward-looking statements are demand for the company's services and products, and its ability to meet that demand, which may be affected by, among other things, competition, weather conditions and the general economy, the availability and cost of labor and owner-operators, the ability to negotiate favorably with lenders and lessors, the effects of terrorism and war, the availability and cost of equipment, fuel and supplies, the market for previously-owned equipment, the impact of changes in the tax and regulatory environment in which the company operates, operational risks and insurance, risks associated with the technologies and systems used and the other risks and uncertainties described in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Given the volatility in fuel prices and the impact fuel surcharge revenues have on total operating revenues, we often make reference to total operating revenue excluding fuel surcharges to provide a more consistent basis for comparison of operating revenue without the impact of fluctuating fuel prices. Readers should review and consider these factors along with the various disclosures by the Company in its press releases, stockholder reports and filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company does not assume, and specifically disclaims, any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect actual results or changes in the factors affecting the forward-looking information.

CONTACT: Frozen Food Express Industries, Inc. Stoney M. "Mit" Stubbs, Jr., Chairman and CEO Russell Stubbs, President John Hickerson, EVP and COO John McManama, Senior VP and CFO (214) 630-8090 ir@ffex.net