Pacer International 1Q net income up 21.9 percent

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Pacer International, a non-asset based North America third-party logistics and freight transportation provider, reported that for the first quarter of 2006 ended April 7, net income increased by $2.5 million, or 21.9 percent, to $13.9 million, compared to $11.4 million in the same quarter of 2005.

Income from operations increased by $3.2 million, or 15.1 percent, to $24.4 million, compared to $21.2 million in the same quarter of 2005. The company generated $10.9 million of cash flow from operations in the first quarter, an improvement of $4.3 million from the same period in 2005, and paid down $7 million of debt. During the first quarter, the company also paid its fourth-quarter 2005 dividend to shareholders of $5.6 million.

“Our performance for the first quarter of 2006 met our objectives and showed substantial improvement over last year’s first quarter,” says Don Orris, chairman and chief executive officer of Concord, Calif.-based Pacer. “Our wholesale segment continues to be a strong growth engine for the company, with income from operations expanding by more than 25 percent compared to the first quarter of 2005.”

Orris says the softer performance of the company’s retail segment during the 2006 quarter resulted in part from reduced rail incentives and from the settlement of a legal case. “Our cash flow remains strong and enabled us to pay down our debt to a balance of $83 million from $90 million in addition to paying the $5.6 million dividend,” he says.