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Cobra Q3 Sales Decline 6%

Chicago – As it continued to build market share, expand key retail relationships and introduce new products during a time of economic downturn, Cobra Electronics reported a 6 percent decrease in sales for the three months ended Sept. 30, down to $36.3 million, compared with $38.6 million in the year-ago period.

Cobra reported net income of $1.4 million for the third quarter, down from $1.9 million in the same three months in 2000. Much of this dip was due to a drop in radar detector sales during the period, compared with a year ago, said Cobra, but the company feels this product shortfall was a matter of timing, and it expects a recovery in radar detector sales for the fourth quarter.

Gross margin remained unchanged at 28.2 percent in the third quarter.

‘Our focus on broadening our major retailer distribution base, both domestically and internationally, is key to our strategy to grow our global market presence, even in this difficult economic environment,’ said Jim Bazet, president/CEO.

For the first nine months, Cobra’ sales increased 6.7 percent, reaching $102.1 million, compared with $95.7 million in the third quarter of 2000.

Net income was $2.5 million for the nine months, down from $4.2 million in the prior-year period. Excluding the one-time second-quarter 2001 expenses pertaining to the terminated acquisition of Lowrance, Cobra’s net income for the first nine months would have been $3.3 million.

Gross margin decreased 800 basis points during the nine months, to 27.4 percent, down from 28.2 percent in the year-ago period.

Cobra remains ‘cautiously optimistic’ about the fourth quarter, looking forward to an expected increase in gift-giving during the holiday season, especially for its Family Radio Service (FMS) products. The company also expects robust CB sales as the price of gasoline decreases and professional truckers have more available income for CB purchases.