The Sherwin-Williams Company (Cleveland, OH) announced its financial results for the third quarter and nine months, ending September 30, 2009. Compared to 2008, Q3 sales decreased by $271.7 million, or 12%, to $1.997 billion and the nine months sales decreased by $784.5 million, or 12.5%, to $5.495 billion. Profits increased slightly to $316.4 million in the quarter, compared to $312.6 million in Q3 2008. In the first nine months of 2009, profits fell to $699.2 million from $799 million in the first nine months of 2008. The company says this is primarily due to weak paint sales volume.
The Global Finishes Group had net sales of $444.1 million in the third quarter, a decline of 11.3% compared to Q3 2008. Nine months sales were $1.216 billion, down 16.2%, but were partially offset by acquisitions and selling price increases.
Net sales for the Consumer Group decreased by 7.1% for the quarter, totaling sales of $330.5 million. Sales were at $985.1 million, down by 4%, for the nine months.
The Paint Stores Group saw a net sales decline of 13.5% to $1.221 billion for the quarter and a 13.4% decline to $3.289 billion for the nine months period. According to the company, this is due primarily to continuing weak residential and commercial architectural paint sales volumes and lower sales in industrial coatings and non-paint categories, but is partially offset by improving DIY customer sales.
Christopher M. Connor, chairman and CEO, commented, “Our Paint Stores Group has continued to control SG&A without sacrificing their ability to deliver superior customer service or focus on gaining business in all markets and product lines. Our Consumer Group has managed to offset some of their market volume softness with new product introduction. Many of the difficult steps Consumer Group has taken to bring fixed costs into line with volumes are starting to show results, and we will continue to control our operating costs until manufacturing volumes return to levels that will support more normal profitability for the Group. We continue to see weak paint demand in our Global Finishes Group, but we are encouraged by the increased sales activity in a number of our regions and segments. We continue to be pleased with the way management and employees in that Group have controlled spending and improved efficiencies in relation to sales levels during some very difficult and challenging economic and financial conditions in many of the countries in which we do business.”