Gentex Sales Up 13 Percent Over Year Ago

April 22, 2008
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ZEELAND — Gentex Corp. today reported record revenues and first quarter net income for the period ended March 31. The maker of automotive rearview mirrors and commercial fire protection products had net sales of $178.0 million, a 13 percent increase over the first quarter of 2007.

Gentex operating income increased by 18 percent in the first quarter of 2008, compared to the same period in 2007. First quarter net income increased by 3 percent, to $30.4 million, compared with the first quarter of 2007, primarily due to lower other income. Earnings per diluted share were flat at 21 cents in the first quarter of 2008 compared with the same period last year.

"We are pleased to report a solid quarter in a very tough operating environment," said Gentex Chairman and CEO Fred Bauer. He said the company’s geographic diversification and increased sales of new products such as the Rear Camera Display Mirror and SmartBeam high beam headlamp assist device "help the company offset the reduced vehicle production levels at the traditional Big Three automakers in North America, due to market share challenges and now the UAW strikes."

Automatic-dimming mirror shipments for the first quarter of 2008 increased by 10 percent compared with the first quarter of 2007, but automotive revenues increased by 14 percent. The company announcement said mirror sales to European and Asian auto makers was the primary factor in a 17 percent increase in Gentex offshore shipments in the first quarter of 2008, compared with the same period last year.

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