Acuity Brands Reports Fiscal 2021 Fourth-Quarter and Full-Year

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October 13, 2021

Acuity Brands announced net sales of $992.7 million for the fiscal fourth quarter ended August 31, 2021, an increase of $101.5 million, or 11.4 percent as compared to the same period in 2020. Diluted earnings per share was $2.72, an increase of 45.5 percent over the prior year, and adjusted diluted earnings per share was $3.27 per share, an increase of 39.1 percent over the prior year.

“I am proud of the progress our team made to transform our Company during fiscal 2021. We improved our operations and delivered solid performance in a challenging environment,” said Neil Ashe, Chief Executive Officer of Acuity Brands. “We are entering fiscal 2022 from a position of strength with a diverse and capable team, who are driven by our values to deliver results for our customers, our investors and our environment.”

Fourth-Quarter Results

Gross profit of $419.3 million increased $44.2 million, or 11.8 percent, as compared to the prior year. Gross profit was 42.2 percent of net sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of 10 basis points from 42.1 percent in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020. Gross profit margin was impacted this quarter by higher material, labor, and freight costs. This impact was mostly offset by our ongoing product and productivity improvements, increased sales volume and benefits from recent price increases.

Operating profit of $132.8 million increased $26.9 million, or 25.4 percent, as compared to the prior year. Operating profit was 13.4 percent of net sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of 150 basis points from 11.9 percent for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020 driven by gross profit improvement and leverage of our operating expenses.

Adjusted operating profit of $156.4 million increased $25.7 million, or 19.7 percent, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021 as compared to the prior year. Adjusted operating profit was 15.8 percent of net sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of 110 basis points from 14.7 percent in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.

Net income of $98.1 million increased $24.4 million, or 33.1 percent, as compared to the prior year. Diluted earnings per share of $2.72 increased $0.85, or 45.5 percent, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, as compared to $1.87 for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.

Adjusted net income of $117.7 million increased $24.9 million, or 26.8 percent, as compared to the prior year. Adjusted diluted earnings per share of $3.27 increased $0.92, or 39.1 percent, as compared to $2.35 for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.

Full-Year 2021 Summary

Net sales were $3.5 billion for the full year of fiscal 2021, an increase of $134.7 million or 4.0 percent, as compared to fiscal 2020.

Gross profit of $1.5 billion increased $72.6 million, or 5.2 percent, in fiscal 2021, as compared to the prior year. Gross profit margin was 42.6 percent for fiscal 2021, an increase of 40 basis points from 42.2 percent in fiscal 2020.

Operating profit of $427.6 million increased $73.7 million, or 20.8 percent, in fiscal 2021, as compared to the prior year. Operating profit was 12.4 percent of net sales for fiscal 2021, an increase of 180 basis points versus the prior year. Adjusted operating profit of $506.3 million increased $50.0 million, or 11.0 percent, for fiscal 2021 as compared to the prior year. Adjusted operating profit was 14.6 percent of net sales for fiscal 2021, an increase of 90 basis points versus the prior year.

Net income of $306.3 million increased $58.0 million in fiscal 2021, or 23.4 percent, as compared to the prior year. Diluted earnings per share of $8.38 increased $2.11, or 33.7 percent, for fiscal 2021, as compared to $6.27 for fiscal 2020.

Adjusted net income of $371.7 million increased $44.4 million in fiscal 2021, or 13.6 percent, as compared to the prior year. Adjusted diluted earnings per share of $10.17 increased $1.90 in fiscal 2021, or 23.0 percent, as compared to $8.27 for fiscal 2020.

Segment Performance

Acuity Brands Lighting and Lighting Controls (ABL)

Fourth-Quarter Results

ABL generated net sales of $946.9 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of $93.8 million or 11.0 percent, as compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.

  • Net sales of $663.1 million in the Independent Sales Network and $102.1 million in the Direct Sales Network increased 9.6 percent and 14.8 percent, respectively, as compared to the prior year, as these channels continue to benefit from improved service levels and an improving economy.
  • Sales in the Corporate Accounts channel of $75.6 million increased 16.0 percent over the prior year as some large accounts began previously deferred maintenance and renovations.
  • Retail sales of $45.7 million declined 20.1 percent, primarily due to continued customer inventory rebalancing.

Operating profit was $149.3 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of $27.5 million or 22.6 percent, as compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020. Adjusted operating profit was $159.1 million for the fiscal fourth quarter of 2021, an increase of $27.8 million or 21.2 percent, as compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.

Full-Year Results Summary

ABL generated net sales of $3.3 billion for the full year of fiscal 2021, an increase of $106.4 million or 3.3 percent, as compared to fiscal 2020.

Operating profit was $476.2 million for fiscal 2021, an increase of $50.4 million or 11.8 percent, as compared to fiscal 2020. Adjusted operating profit was $515.1 million for fiscal 2021 an increase of $47.3 million or 10.1 percent, as compared to fiscal 2020.

Intelligent Spaces Group (ISG)

Fourth-Quarter Results Summary

ISG generated net sales of $50.5 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of $9.6 million or 23.5 percent, as compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.The increase in net sales was due to strong demand for building and HVAC controls, energy management, and location services.

Operating profit was $2.0 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of $3.6 million as compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020. Adjusted operating profit was $6.0 million for the fourth quarter of 2021 an increase of $3.9 million, as compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020.

Full-Year Results

ISG generated net sales of $190.0 million for fiscal 2021, an increase of $33.0 million or 21.0 percent, as compared to fiscal 2020.

Operating profit was $9.9 million for fiscal 2021, an increase of $13.8 million as compared to fiscal 2020. Adjusted operating profit was $25.6 million for fiscal 2021, an increase of $10.7 million, as compared to fiscal 2020.

The independent registered public accounting firm’s audit report with respect to the Company’s fiscal year-end financial statements will not be issued until the Company files its annual report on Form 10-K, including its evaluation of the effectiveness of internal controls over financial reporting. Accordingly, the financial results reported in this earnings release are preliminary pending completion of the audit.

Cash Flow and Capital Allocation

Net cash from operating activities of $408.7 million decreased $96.1 million, or 19.0 percent, for fiscal 2021 as compared to the prior year. The decrease was driven primarily by an increase in net working capital to support the higher level of sales.

During the twelve months of 2021, the Company repurchased 3.8 million shares of common stock for a total of $434.9 million at an average price paid of $114 per share. The Company had approximately 3.8 million shares remaining under its most recent share purchase authorization at the end of the fourth quarter of 2021. Since May of 2020, the Company has reduced the outstanding share count by over 10 percent.

The independent registered public accounting firm’s audit report with respect to the Company’s fiscal year-end financial statements will not be issued until the Company files its annual report on Form 10-K, including its evaluation of the effectiveness of internal controls over financial reporting. Accordingly, the financial results reported in this earnings release are preliminary pending completion of the audit.

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