Raven Industries reports that sales for the second quarter are up to $94.5 million from $93.4 million the same time last year, due in part to Google's Project Loon, which uses the company's balloons.
Balloon sales for Google Project Loon were up 175 percent. The balloons that bring Internet service to remote areas are lasting about 75 days. Raven expects to increase its balloon production for the project in the next quarter. But ramping up production is expected to temporarily stall the growth rate.
Sales also rose 14 percent in the company's Engineered Films division. This was offset by sales declines in the Applied Technology and Aerostar divisions and led to net income of $7.7 million. For the first half of 2014, sales were $197.0 million, essentially flat with last year's $197.1 million. Net income is down for the period, totaling $18.8 million, or $0.51 per diluted share, versus $22.3 million, or $0.61 per diluted share, in fiscal 2014.
"Engineered Films again delivered strong performance, posting double-digit gains over the prior-year period," said Daniel A. Rykhus, Raven's President and Chief Executive Officer. "Consolidated sales and net income for the corporation fell short of expectations primarily due to persisting weakness in agriculture equipment markets. Within Aerostar, we are pleased that our work with Google is ramping successfully."