Chart Industries, Inc. has reported net sales for the first quarter of 2007 increased 26 percent to $152.5m from $120.8m in the comparable period a year ago.
$quot;We are very pleased with the first quarter operating results for our Distribution & Storage and BioMedical business segments, which were significantly above our expectations and our 2006 first quarter results,$quot; stated Sam Thomas, Chart Industries, Inc. chairman, president and chief executive officer. $quot;The strong performance in these businesses was achieved across all product lines in both the U.S. and international markets that we serve, which helped offset lower profit on higher sales in our Energy & Chemicals segment.$quot;
Net income for Q1 2007 was $7.2m, this compares to $6m in Q1 2006.
Gross profit for the first quarter of 2007 was $39.9 million, or 26 percent of sales, versus $37.0 million, or 31 percent of sales, in the comparable quarter of 2006.
Distribution & Storage ($quot;D&S$quot;) segment sales for the first quarter of 2007 continued to be very strong, increasing by 27 percent to $76.8m compared with $60.3m for Q1 2006. Bulk storage and packaged gas systems sales volumes were favorably affected by the continued growth in the global industrial gas market, including markets served by the Company's China and Czech Republic facilities.
Sales also benefited from price increases implemented to absorb continued escalating raw material costs, and foreign currency translation. While overall growth is expected in the global industrial gas market during the remainder of 2007, more of this growth is forecasted to come from international markets, particularly Central Europe and Asia, as the U.S. market is experiencing signs of moderating growth.