Duluth, GA-based regional LTL Saia, Inc. plans to repurchase up to $25 million more of its common stock – a move that would follow the $20 million worth of stock repurchased since May of last year.
The move comes after a quarter of strong revenues despite slippage in tonnage. Saia posted a 12% gain in operating income to $14 million on 14% higher revenues of $226 million in the third quarter this year compared to the same period last year, with earnings per share 21% higher at 52 cents a share in the third quarter vs. 43 cents a share for the same quarter of 2005.
“Due to less-than-typical peak season shipping demand, tonnage did not grow as much as in the second quarter year-over-year comparisons,” said Rick O’Dell, Saia’s president, noting that tonnage increased just 7%.
Yet steady yield improvement helped the carrier post good profits, more than likely providing the reason for initiating a second multi-million dollar round of stock repurchasing.
“Despite signs of a moderating economy, we believe Saia is well positioned for long-term profitable growth and shareholder value creation as it builds market share and efficiencies in its existing geography while seeking opportunities for geographic expansion,” noted Bert Trucksess, the carrier’s chairman & CEO.