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Kewaunee Scientific Reports Record Results Net Earnings for Year Increase 36%, Sales Increase 16%

STATESVILLE, N.C., June 24 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Kewaunee Scientific Corporation (Nasdaq: KEQU) today reported record sales, earnings, and order backlog for its fiscal year ended April 30, 2009.

Net earnings for the year increased 36% to $4,247,000, or $1.66 per diluted share, up from net earnings of $3,134,000, or $1.23 per diluted share, in the prior year. Earnings benefited from higher sales volume, lower manufacturing costs and improved operational efficiencies.

Sales for the year increased 16% to $103,978,000, up from sales of $89,510,000 in the prior year. Sales from domestic operations increased to $90,250,000, up 22.0% from the prior year. Sales from international operations were $13,728,000, down 13% from the prior year. Incoming orders activity was strong throughout the year, as a healthy domestic laboratory furniture marketplace more than offset the impact of a soft Asian marketplace. The order backlog increased to a record $62.7 million at April 30, 2009, up from $60.7 million at January 31, 2009 and $58.7 million at April 30, 2008.

Net earnings for the fourth quarter were $920,000, or $0.36 per diluted share, up from net earnings of $446,000, or $0.17 per diluted share, in the prior year. Sales for the fourth quarter increased to $24,828,000, up 12% from sales of $22,116,000 in the same period of the prior year. Sales from domestic operations for the quarter were $22,954,000, up from sales of $18,015,000 in the same quarter of the prior year, while sales from international operations were $1,874,000, down from sales of $4,101,000 in the prior year.

The Company's balance sheet remains strong. Working capital increased to $18.9 million at April 30, 2009, up from $15.9 million at the end of the prior year. Cash on hand at the end of the year was $4.0 million, as compared to $4.3 million at the end of the prior year. Bank borrowings and capital lease obligations were $6.1 million at year-end, as compared to $5.0 million at the end of the prior year, and the debt-to-equity ratio was .23-to-1 at year-end, as compared to .19-to-1 at the end of the prior year.

"This past year was a rewarding, yet challenging year," said William A. Shumaker, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Our programs and strategies over the past few years to make Kewaunee a stronger and more competitive company were put to the test. During the first half of the year, we were confronted with escalating prices for certain raw materials, particularly steel and epoxy resin, and higher energy and transportation costs. This was followed by the global economic slowdown in the second half of the year. Despite these and other challenges, year-over-year increases in sales and net earnings were achieved for each quarter of the year, and we continued to build our order backlog.

"Looking toward fiscal year 2010, we believe a number of factors have the Company well-positioned for another good year," continued Mr. Shumaker. "A healthy domestic laboratory furniture marketplace, our record order backlog, and excellent performances by our factories are providing us strong momentum. The Asian laboratory furniture marketplace, which was soft the past year, is expected to improve and provide increased opportunities. The move to our new, modern plant in Bangalore, India, is now complete. This plant has full manufacturing capabilities which positions us to compete more broadly for additional projects in Asia and the Middle East. Next year will also present a number of challenges. These include uncertainty as to when the global economic slowdown will end and higher pension costs for the Company due to losses in our pension investments portfolio."

Kewaunee Scientific Corporation is a recognized leader in the design, manufacture, and installation of scientific and technical furniture. The Company's corporate headquarters and domestic manufacturing facilities are located in Statesville, North Carolina. The Company has subsidiaries in Singapore and Bangalore, India which serve the Asian and Middle East markets. Kewaunee Scientific's website is located at

Certain statements in this release constitute "forward-looking" statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that could significantly impact results or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, economic, competitive, governmental, and technological factors affecting the Company's operations, markets, products, services, and prices.

                         Consolidated Statements of Operations
                         (in thousands, except per share data)

                                    Three Months Ended       Years Ended
                                         April 30              April 30
                                     2009       2008       2009       2008
                                     ----       ----       ----       ----

    Net sales                       $24,828   $22,116    $103,978  $89,510
    Cost of products sold            19,759    17,579      82,605   70,338
                                     ------    ------      ------   ------
    Gross profit                      5,069     4,537      21,373   19,172
    Operating expenses                3,405     3,748      14,289   13,559
                                      -----     -----      ------   ------
    Operating earnings                1,664       789       7,084    5,613
    Other income (expense)                8        49         (28)      47
    Interest expense                    (49)        8        (280)    (294)
                                      -----     -----       -----    -----

    Earnings before income taxes      1,623       846       6,776    5,366
    Income tax expense                  669       342       2,264    1,733
                                        ---       ---       -----    -----

    Earnings before minority interests  954       504       4,512    3,633
    Minority interests in subsidiaries  (34)      (58)       (265)    (499)
                                       ----       ---       -----    -----
    Net earnings                       $920      $446      $4,247   $3,134
                                       ====      ====      ======   ======

    Net earnings per share
               Basic                  $0.36     $0.17       $1.66    $1.24
               Diluted                $0.36     $0.17       $1.66    $1.23
    Weighted average number of
     Common shares outstanding
     (in thousands)
               Basic                  2,556     2,551       2,555    2,530
               Diluted                2,556     2,577       2,561    2,557

                           Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets
                                      (in thousands)

                                               April 30         April 30
    Assets                                       2009             2008
                                                 ----             ----
    Cash and cash equivalents                   $3,559          $3,784
    Restricted cash                                456             480
    Receivables, less allowances                24,526          20,087
    Inventories                                  7,839           6,984
    Prepaid expenses and other current
     assets                                      1,165           1,847
                                                 -----           -----
       Total current assets                     37,545          33,182
    Net property, plant and equipment           11,369          11,825
    Other assets                                 3,615           5,599
                                                 -----           -----
    Total Assets                               $52,529         $50,606
                                               =======         =======
    Liabilities and Stockholders' Equity
    Short-term borrowings                       $5,720          $4,551
    Current obligations under capital leases       220             323
    Accounts payable                             8,812           8,929
    Other current liabilities                    3,911           3,459
                                                 -----           -----
       Total current liabilities                18,663          17,262
    Other non-current liabilities                6,913           6,397
    Total stockholders' equity                  26,953          26,947
                                                ------          ------
    Total Liabilities and Stockholders'
     Equity                                    $52,529         $50,606
                                               =======         =======

    Contact:  D. Michael Parker

SOURCE Kewaunee Scientific Corporation
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