Over the course of the year, the company pursued an aggressive growth strategy, which included dedicating increasing amounts of our production capacity to high-margin, innovative products, outsourcing manufacture of lower end products with third parties and ramping up sales and the distribution infrastructure.
On the infrastructure side, the company added several new points of sale in critical markets both in Mexico and the United States. In each market Interceramic has expanded customer service operations and invested heavily in new marketing programs for expanding and improving the sales force.
At $300 million, 2002 sales were 4.15 percent over sales of $288 million in 2001. The company's gross margin of 37 percent in line with the 37.21 percent tagged last year, the company says.
International sales of $130.9 million climbed by 11.46 percent over sales of $117.4 million in 2001.
Fourth quarter sales of $76.5 million represented a 4.55 percent increase over sales of $73.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2001. Operating income sagged by almost 19 percent over the two periods, with operating income of US $6 million in the fourth quarter of 2002 compared to $7.4 million in 2001. EBITDA of $9.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2002 slid by 9.36 percent under EBITDA of $10.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2001, the company says.