News Release Details

Unifirst Investor Information

UniFirst Announces Financial Results for the First Quarter of Fiscal 2021

January 6, 2021 at 8:00 AM EST

WILMINGTON, Mass., Jan. 06, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- UniFirst Corporation (NYSE: UNF) (the “Company”) today reported results for its first quarter ended November 28, 2020 as compared to the corresponding period in the prior fiscal year:

Q1 2021 Financial Highlights

  • Consolidated revenues for the first quarter decreased 4.0% to $446.9 million.
  • Operating income was $56.0 million, a decrease of 6.7%.
  • The quarterly tax rate increased to 25.0% compared to 22.1% in prior year.
  • Net income decreased to $41.9 million, or 13.2%.
  • Diluted earnings per share decreased to $2.20 from $2.52, or 12.7%.

Steven Sintros, UniFirst President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “Overall, we are pleased with our first quarter results which were achieved despite the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have on our business and the economy as a whole.   As a Company, our top priorities continue to be the safety of our employee Team Partners as well as servicing our customers, many of whom are critical to keeping our communities up and running.  I want to again sincerely thank our Team Partners for the tremendous effort they continue to put forth ensuring that they are taking care of each other and our customers during these challenging times.  They truly continue to deliver in every way.” 

Segment Reporting Highlights

Core Laundry Operations

  • Revenues for the quarter decreased 5.6% to $393.2 million. This decrease was primarily due to the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our customers’ operations and wearer levels.
  • Operating margin decreased to 12.4% from 12.9%. This segment’s profitability was negatively impacted by the decline in rental revenues on our cost structure, which was partially offset by lower travel-related, energy and healthcare costs during the quarter.

Specialty Garments

  • Revenues for the quarter were $38.1 million, an increase of 14.2%. This increase was primarily due to higher direct sales and project-related work in the U.S. and Canadian nuclear operations as well as growth in our cleanroom operations.
  • Operating margin increased to 18.8% from 14.6% a year ago. This increase was primarily due to lower production and delivery costs as a percentage of revenues as well as lower travel-related, energy and healthcare costs. These decreases were partially offset by higher merchandise expense as a percentage of revenues.
  • Specialty Garments consists of nuclear decontamination and cleanroom operations, and its results can vary significantly due to seasonality and the timing of reactor outages and projects.

Balance Sheet and Capital Allocation

  • Cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments totaled $473.0 million as of November 28, 2020.
  • The Company had no long-term debt outstanding as of November 28, 2020.
  • Under its previously announced stock repurchase program, the Company repurchased 41,000 shares of common stock for a total of $7.2 million during its first fiscal quarter of 2021. As of November 28, 2020, the Company had repurchased a total of 355,917 shares of common stock for a total of $59.5 million under the program.
  • Weighted average shares outstanding – Diluted for the first quarter of fiscal 2021 and fiscal 2020 was 19.0 million and 19.1 million shares, respectively.

Financial Outlook

Mr. Sintros continued, “At this time, our overall outlook in the quarters ahead remains uncertain.  Recent increases in positive COVID-19 cases have caused certain states, provinces and municipalities to reimplement temporary restrictions on businesses.  The impact of these or further restrictions as well as the potential positive impact of a broader vaccine distribution are currently difficult to project. As a result, we will not be providing further guidance at this time. Our solid balance sheet positions us well to meet the ongoing challenges presented by COVID-19 while continuing to invest in growth and strengthen our business.”

Conference Call Information

UniFirst will hold a conference call today at 9:00 a.m. (ET) to discuss its quarterly financial results, business highlights and outlook. A simultaneous live webcast of the call will be available over the Internet and can be accessed at

About UniFirst Corporation

Headquartered in Wilmington, Mass., UniFirst Corporation (NYSE: UNF) is a North American leader in the supply and servicing of uniform and workwear programs, as well as the delivery of facility service programs. Together with its subsidiaries, the Company also provides first aid and safety products, and manages specialized garment programs for the cleanroom and nuclear industries. UniFirst manufactures its own branded workwear, protective clothing, and floorcare products; and with 260 service locations, over 300,000 customer locations, and 14,000-plus employee Team Partners, the Company outfits nearly 2 million workers each business day. For more information, contact UniFirst at 800.455.7654 or visit

Forward-Looking Statements Disclosure

This public announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws that reflect the Company’s current views with respect to future events and financial performance, including projected revenues and earnings per share. Forward-looking statements contained in this public announcement are subject to the safe harbor created by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and may be identified by words such as “estimates,” “anticipates,” “projects,” “plans,” “expects,” “intends,” “believes,” “seeks,” “could,” “should,” “may,” “will,” “strategy,” “objective,” “positions,” “assume,” “strive,” “maintain,” or the negative versions thereof, and similar expressions and by the context in which they are used. Such forward-looking statements are based upon our current expectations and speak only as of the date made. Such statements are highly dependent upon a variety of risks, uncertainties and other important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those reflected in such forward-looking statements. Such factors include, but are not limited to, uncertainties caused by adverse economic conditions, including, without limitation, as a result of extraordinary events or circumstances such as the COVID-19 pandemic, and their impact on our customers’ businesses and workforce levels, disruptions of our business and operations, including limitations on, or closures of, our facilities, or the business and operations of our customers or suppliers in connection with extraordinary events or circumstances such as the COVID-19 pandemic, uncertainties regarding our ability to consummate and successfully integrate acquired businesses, uncertainties regarding any existing or newly-discovered expenses and liabilities related to environmental compliance and remediation, any adverse outcome of pending or future contingencies or claims, our ability to compete successfully without any significant degradation in our margin rates, seasonal and quarterly fluctuations in business levels, our ability to preserve positive labor relationships and avoid becoming the target of corporate labor unionization campaigns that could disrupt our business, the effect of currency fluctuations on our results of operations and financial condition, our dependence on third parties to supply us with raw materials, which such supply could be severely disrupted as a result of extraordinary events or circumstances such as the COVID-19 pandemic, any loss of key management or other personnel, increased costs as a result of any changes in federal or state laws, rules and regulations or governmental interpretation of such laws, rules and regulations, uncertainties regarding the price levels of natural gas, electricity, fuel and labor, the negative effect on our business from sharply depressed oil and natural gas prices, including, without limitation, as a result of extraordinary events or circumstances such as the COVID-19 pandemic, the continuing increase in domestic healthcare costs, increased workers’ compensation claim costs, increased healthcare claim costs, including as a result of extraordinary events or circumstances such as the COVID-19 pandemic, our ability to retain and grow our customer base, demand and prices for our products and services, fluctuations in our Specialty Garments business, political or other instability, supply chain disruption or infection among our employees in Mexico and Nicaragua where our principal garment manufacturing plants are located, including, without limitation, as a result of extraordinary events or circumstances such as the COVID-19 pandemic, our ability to properly and efficiently design, construct, implement and operate a new customer relationship management (“CRM”) computer system, interruptions or failures of our information technology systems, including as a result of cyber-attacks, additional professional and internal costs necessary for compliance with any changes in Securities and Exchange Commission, New York Stock Exchange and accounting rules, strikes and unemployment levels, our efforts to evaluate and potentially reduce internal costs, economic and other developments associated with the war on terrorism and its impact on the economy, the impact of foreign trade policies and tariffs or other impositions on imported goods on our business, results of operations and financial condition, general economic conditions, our ability to successfully implement our business strategies and processes, including our capital allocation strategies and the other factors described under “Item 1A. Risk Factors” and elsewhere in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended August 29, 2020, “Item 1.A. Risk Factors” and elsewhere in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and in our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances arising after the date on which they are made.

Consolidated Statements of Income

(In thousands, except per share data)   Thirteen weeks ended November
28, 2020
    Thirteen weeks ended November
30, 2019
Revenues   $ 446,853     $ 465,398  
Operating expenses:                
Cost of revenues (1)     275,800       289,316  
Selling and administrative expenses (1)     88,703       90,528  
Depreciation and amortization     26,308       25,459  
Total operating expenses     390,811       405,303  
Operating income     56,042       60,095  
Other (income) expense:                
Interest income, net     (568 )     (2,361 )
Other expense, net     749       528  
Total other (income) expense, net     181       (1,833 )
Income before income taxes     55,861       61,928  
Provision for income taxes     13,965       13,686  
Net income   $ 41,896     $ 48,242  
Income per share – Basic:                
Common Stock   $ 2.31     $ 2.65  
Class B Common Stock   $ 1.85     $ 2.12  
Income per share – Diluted:                
Common Stock   $ 2.20     $ 2.52  
Income allocated to – Basic:                
Common Stock   $ 35,171     $ 40,526  
Class B Common Stock   $ 6,725     $ 7,716  
Income allocated to – Diluted:                
Common Stock   $ 41,896     $ 48,242  
Weighted average shares outstanding – Basic:                
Common Stock     15,247       15,308  
Class B Common Stock     3,643       3,643  
Weighted average shares outstanding – Diluted:                
Common Stock     19,019       19,123  

      (1) Exclusive of depreciation on the Company’s property, plant and equipment and amortization on its intangible assets.

Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets

(In thousands)   November 28, 2020     August 29, 2020  
Current assets:                
Cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments   $ 473,010     $ 474,838  
Receivables, net     209,916       190,916  
Inventories     104,525       106,269  
Rental merchandise in service     155,100       154,278  
Prepaid taxes     3,612       7,115  
Prepaid expenses and other current assets     40,661       35,918  
Total current assets     986,824       969,334  
Property, plant and equipment, net     598,719       582,470  
Goodwill     424,881       424,844  
Customer contracts and other intangible assets, net     85,150       85,536  
Deferred income taxes     522       522  
Operating lease right-of-use assets, net     42,033       42,710  
Other assets     96,031       93,611  
Total assets   $ 2,234,160     $ 2,199,027  
Liabilities and shareholders’ equity                
Current liabilities:                
Accounts payable   $ 60,268     $ 64,035  
Accrued liabilities     138,693       132,965  
Accrued taxes           527  
Operating lease liabilities, current     12,731       12,569  
Total current liabilities     211,692       210,096  
Long-term liabilities:                
Accrued liabilities     133,600       132,820  
Accrued and deferred income taxes     86,642       85,721  
Operating lease liabilities     28,874       29,261  
Total liabilities     460,808       457,898  
Shareholders’ equity:                
Common Stock     1,522       1,525  
Class B Common Stock     364       364  
Capital surplus     87,210       86,645  
Retained earnings     1,714,937       1,684,565  
Accumulated other comprehensive loss     (30,681 )     (31,970 )
Total shareholders’ equity     1,773,352       1,741,129  
Total liabilities and shareholders’ equity   $ 2,234,160     $ 2,199,027  

Detail of Operating Results


(In thousands, except percentages)   Thirteen weeks ended
November 28, 2020
    Thirteen weeks ended
November 30, 2019
Core Laundry Operations     393,190       416,298       (23,108 )     (5.6 )%
Specialty Garments     38,134       33,402       4,732       14.2 %
First Aid     15,529       15,698       (169 )     (1.1 )%
Consolidated total   $ 446,853     $ 465,398     $ (18,545 )     (4.0 )%


Operating Income

(In thousands, except percentages)   Thirteen weeks ended
November 28, 2020
    Thirteen weeks ended
November 30, 2019
Core Laundry Operations   $ 48,870     $ 53,808     $ (4,938 )     (9.2 )%
Specialty Garments     7,159       4,879       2,280       46.7 %
First Aid     13       1,408       (1,395 )     (99.1 )%
Consolidated total   $ 56,042     $ 60,095     $ (4,053 )     (6.7 )%


Operating Margin

    Thirteen weeks ended November 28, 2020     Thirteen weeks ended November 30, 2019  
Core Laundry Operations     12.4 %     12.9 %
Specialty Garments     18.8 %     14.6 %
First Aid     0.1 %     9.0 %
Consolidated total     12.5 %     12.9 %


Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows

(In thousands)   Thirteen weeks ended
November 28, 2020
    Thirteen weeks ended
November 30, 2019
Cash flows from operating activities:                
Net income   $ 41,896     $ 48,242  
Adjustments to reconcile net income to cash provided by operating activities:                
Depreciation and amortization     26,308       25,459  
Amortization of deferred financing costs     28       28  
Loss on sale of property, plant & equipment     5        
Share-based compensation     1,622       1,575  
Accretion on environmental contingencies     112       134  
Accretion on asset retirement obligations     245       232  
Deferred income taxes     242       245  
Other     28       5  
Changes in assets and liabilities, net of acquisitions:                
Receivables, less reserves     (18,875 )     (12,771 )
Inventories     1,783       1,195  
Rental merchandise in service     (684 )     1,370  
Prepaid expenses and other current assets and Other assets     (2,812 )     (2,074 )
Accounts payable     (3,127 )     (5,031 )
Accrued liabilities     2,876       (2,678 )
Prepaid and accrued income taxes     3,094       (3,497 )
Net cash provided by operating activities     52,741       52,434  
Cash flows from investing activities:                
Acquisition of businesses, net of cash acquired     (603 )     (39,286 )
Capital expenditures, including capitalization of software costs     (41,836 )     (28,975 )
Proceeds from sale of assets     15       61  
Net cash used in investing activities     (42,424 )     (68,200 )
Cash flows from financing activities:                
Proceeds from exercise of share-based awards     1       74  
Taxes withheld and paid related to net share settlement of equity awards     (834 )     (1,570 )
Repurchase of Common Stock     (7,216 )     (9,973 )
Payment of cash dividends     (4,541 )     (2,056 )
Net cash used in financing activities     (12,590 )     (13,525 )
Effect of exchange rate changes     445       538  
Net decrease in cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments     (1,828 )     (28,753 )
Cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments at beginning of period     474,838       385,341  
Cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments at end of period   $ 473,010     $ 356,588  

Investor Relations Contact
Shane O’Connor, Executive Vice President & CFO
UniFirst Corporation        

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Source: UniFirst Corp.


For more information, call (800) 455-7654.