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Nortek Narrows Q1 Net Loss

Providence, R.I. – Nortek, parent
of multiple residential and commercial system suppliers, narrowed its
first-quarter net loss to $1.2 million compared with a year-ago loss of $21.1
million on rising net sales of 7 percent to $522.8 million.

The sales gains were driven
primarily by the company’s commercial HVAC segment, but the residential
technology group delivered “modest growth,” the company said.

“Sales in our commercial HVAC
segment grew 39 percent from the first quarter last year — outpacing overall
growth in the commercial construction market,” said president/CEO Michael
J.Clarke. “Although the domestic housing sector faced continued challenges, our
technology products and residential ventilation products segments delivered
modest growth, offsetting a decline in residential HVAC product sales.”

The company offers ventilation,
HVAC and technology products for residential and commercial installation. The
company’s residential technology brands include Niles Audio, Xantech Elan Home
Systems, Gefen, Omnimount,
Panamax, SpeakerCraft and others.

In the quarter, operating
earnings rose to $24.9 million from the year-ago $1.9 million. Gross margin
increased to 27.9 percent from the year-ago 26 percent. Selling, general and
administrative expense decreased by $3.1 million to $110.1 million from $113.2
million a year earlier.

Acquisitions contributed $4.7
million to net sales for the quarter, the company said.