MENTOR, Ohio, March 14 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- STERIS Corporation (NYSE: STE) today announced that its Board of Directors has authorized the purchase of up to $300 million in shares of STERIS common stock. The authorization represents approximately 20% of outstanding shares as of February 29, 2008. This share repurchase authorization replaces an existing authorization that had approximately $160 million remaining. Through March 13, 2008, the Company has repurchased approximately $162 million in common stock during fiscal year 2008, including $65 million to date in the fourth quarter ending March 31, 2008.
"We believe that our strong balance sheet and free cash flow level afford us the opportunity to use our capital structure to drive incremental returns to shareholders, while still being able to fund ongoing investments and growth in our business," said Walt Rosebrough, STERIS's president and chief executive officer. "During this fiscal year, we have been much more aggressive with share repurchases and this new authorization reflects our continued confidence in the Company's business and growth plans."
Under the new share repurchase authorization, the Company may purchase shares from time to time in open market purchases or privately negotiated transactions. This authorization has no time limit, and may be suspended or discontinued at any time. The Company may make all or part of the repurchases under Rule 10b5-1 plans. These plans may be entered into or terminated from time to time, and enable the Company to make repurchases on a more regular basis. The Company intends to finance the share repurchase program through a combination of available cash and debt.
The mission of STERIS Corporation is to provide a healthier today and safer tomorrow through knowledgeable people and innovative infection prevention, decontamination and health science technologies, products and services. The Company's more than 5,000 dedicated employees around the world work together to supply a broad array of solutions by offering a combination of equipment, consumables and services to healthcare, pharmaceutical, industrial and government customers. The Company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol STE. For more information, visit http://www.steris.com.
This news release may contain statements concerning certain trends, expectations, forecasts, estimates, or other forward-looking information affecting or relating to the Company or its industry that are intended to qualify for the protections afforded "forward-looking statements" under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and other laws and regulations. Forward-looking statements speak only as to the date of this report, and may be identified by the use of forward-looking terms such as "may," "will," "expects," "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "estimates," "projects," "targets," "forecasts," "confidence," and "seeks," or the negative of such terms or other variations on such terms or comparable terminology. Many important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements including, without limitation, disruption of production or supplies, changes in market conditions, political events, pending or future claims or litigation, competitive factors, technology advances, and changes in government regulations or the application or interpretation thereof. Other risk factors are described in the Company's Form 10-K and other securities filings. Many of these important factors are outside STERIS's control. No assurances can be provided as to any future financial results or continuation or level of share repurchase. Unless legally required, the Company does not undertake to update or revise any forward- looking statements even if events make clear that any projected results, express or implied, will not be realized. Other potential risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include, without limitation, (a) the potential for increased pressure on pricing that leads to erosion of profit margins, (b) the possibility that market demand will not develop for new technologies, products or applications, or the Company's business initiatives will take longer, cost more or produce lower benefits than anticipated, (c) the possibility that application of or compliance with laws, court rulings, regulations, certifications or other requirements or standards may delay or prevent new product introductions, affect the production and marketing of existing products, or otherwise affect Company performance, results, or value, (d) the potential of international unrest or effects of fluctuations in currencies, tax assessments or rates, raw material costs, benefit or retirement plan costs, or other regulatory compliance costs, (e) the possibility of reduced demand, or reductions in the rate of growth in demand, for the Company's products and services, and (f) the possibility that anticipated cost savings may not be achieved, or that transition, labor, competition, timing, execution, regulatory, governmental, executive transition or other issues or risks associated with the matters described in this release, may adversely impact Company performance, results, or value.
|SOURCE STERIS Corporation|
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