LOS ANGELES, California, February 16, 2012 - VCA Antech, Inc. (NASDAQ: WOOF), a leading animal healthcare company in the United States, today reported financial results for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2011 as follows: revenue increased 9.1% to a fourth quarter record of $369.0 million; gross profit increased 3.1% to $71.7 million; and loss per common share of $0.04.
The fourth quarter of 2011 included a non-cash impairment charge of $21.3 million related to the write-down of goodwill in our Medical Technology business, reported in our All Other segment. Excluding this item, adjusted diluted earnings per common share was $0.21.
We also reported our financial results for the twelve months ended December 31, 2011, as follows: revenue increased 7.5% to a twelve-month record of $1.49 billion; gross profit increased 2.2% to $338.5 million; and diluted earnings per common share of $1.09. The twelve month results included debt retirement costs of $2.8 million, or $1.7 million net of tax, related to the refinancing of our senior credit facility and a goodwill impairment charge of $21.3 million, or $0.25 per diluted share, related to our Medical Technology business, reported in our All Other segment. Excluding these items, adjusted diluted earnings per common share was $1.35.
Bob Antin, Chairman and CEO, stated, "I am excited that we continue to see growth and stability in our same-store growth rates for our core Animal Hospital and Laboratory segments. We have had two consecutive quarters of positive same-store growth, which is encouraging in this challenging environment. Our results include an impairment charge in our Medical Technology business. We continue to be committed to the Digital Radiography and Ultrasound businesses, and believe these businesses are an important part of our strategy in the future.
"Animal Hospital revenue in the fourth quarter of 2011 increased 9.2% to $285.6 million driven by acquisitions made in the past twelve months and same-store revenue growth of 1.1%. Our Animal Hospital gross margin decreased to 12.5%, compared to 13.4%, for the prior year quarter, and our Animal Hospital operating margin declined to 10.2%, compared to 10.8%, for the prior-year quarter. Our same-store gross profit margin decreased to 12.5%, from 13.7%. During the quarter, we acquired eight independent animal hospitals which had historical combined annual revenue of $16.5 million. During the year, we acquired 27 independent animal hospitals which had historical combined annual revenue of $36.9 million.
"Laboratory revenue in the fourth quarter increased 2.3% to $73.9 million. Internal revenue growth was 2.3%, driven by an increase in the number of requisitions. Our Laboratory gross profit margin decreased by ten basis points to 42.0% and our operating margin decreased 50 basis points to 32.2%.
"Revenue from our other operations reported in our All Other segment increased $10.0 million in the fourth quarter to $26.2 million, which related primarily to the acquisition of Vetstreet in August 2011."
2012 Financial Guidance
Based on the assumptions stated below, we provide the following financial guidance for the full year 2012:
Non-GAAP Financial Measures
We believe investors' understanding of our total performance is enhanced by disclosing adjusted net income and adjusted diluted earnings per common share. We define these adjusted measures as the reported amounts, adjusted to exclude certain significant items. Adjusted diluted earnings per common share equals adjusted net income divided by diluted common shares outstanding.
Management uses adjusted measures because they exclude the effect of significant items that we believe are not representative of our core operations for the periods presented. As a result, these non-GAAP financial measures help to provide meaningful comparisons of our overall performance from one reporting period to another and meaningful assessments of related trends. For the three months ended December 31, 2011, we made the following adjustment: $21.3 million or $0.25 per diluted common share, for a non-cash impairment charge. For the twelve months ended December 31, 2011, we made the following adjustments: $2.8 million, or $1.7 million after tax, and $0.02 per diluted common share for debt retirement costs related to the refinancing of our senior credit facility; $21.3 million, or $0.24 per diluted common share, for a non-cash impairment charge. Further, for the twelve months ended December 31, 2010, we made the following adjustments: $2.1 million, or $1.3 million after tax, or $0.02 per diluted common share for debt retirement costs related to the refinancing of our senior term notes and financing of our new revolver; $5.4 million, or $3.5 million net of tax, or $0.04 per diluted common share for tax expense related to the settlement of state taxes assessed on taxable income for the tax years 2004 through 2007; $14.5 million, or $8.9 million net of tax, or $0.10 per diluted common share, for compensation in connection to executive consulting agreements.
There is a material limitation associated with the use of these non-GAAP financial measures: our adjusted measures exclude the impact of these significant items, and as a result, our computation of adjusted diluted earnings per common share does not depict diluted earnings per common share in accordance with GAAP.
To compensate for the limitations in the non-GAAP financial measures discussed above, our disclosures provide a complete understanding of all adjustments found in non-GAAP financial measures, and we reconcile the non-GAAP financial measures to the GAAP financial measures in the attached financial schedules titled "Supplemental Operating Data."
We will discuss our fourth quarter 2011 financial results during a conference call today, February 16th, at 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time. A live broadcast of the call may be accessed by visiting our website at http://investor.vcaantech.com. The call may also be accessed by dialing (877) 293-5492. Interested parties should call at least ten minutes prior to the start of the call to register.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may and likely will differ materially from this forward-looking information. Our Animal Hospital and Laboratory revenues have been adversely impacted by the current economic recession. We are unable to forecast accurately the timing or degree of any economic recovery. Further, trends in the general economy may not be reflected in our business at the same time or in the same degree as in the general economy. The timing and degree of any economic recovery, and its impact on our business, are among the important factors that could cause actual results to differ from this forward-looking information. Among other factors that could cause our actual results to differ from this forward-looking information are: an increase in the level of direct costs or a failure to increase revenue at a level necessary to maintain our expected operating margins, a material adverse change in our financial condition or operations; the level of selling, general and administrative costs; the effects of our recent and future acquisitions (including Vetstreet) and our ability to effectively manage our growth and achieve operating synergies; a decline in demand for any of our products and services; any disruption in our information technology systems or transportation networks; the effects of competition; any impairment in the carrying value of our goodwill and other intangible assets; changes in prevailing interest rates; our ability to service our debt; and general economic conditions. These and other risks are discussed in our Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 and the reader is directed to these statements for a further discussion of important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements.
About VCA Antech
We own, operate and manage the largest networks of freestanding veterinary hospitals and veterinary-exclusive clinical laboratories in the country and we provide the largest online communication, professional education and marketing solution to the veterinary community. We also supply diagnostic imaging equipment to the veterinary industry.
Chief Financial Officer