The overall downturn in the US vitamins and minerals market took its toll on third quarter sales and profits at Nutrition 21, the producer of chromium-based supplements.
The company reported third quarter sales of $4.0 million (€4.4m) compared to $6.4 million a year earlier. For the first nine months of the year, sales were $10.8 million, compared to $17.9 million a year earlier.
Profits for the quarter were also lower than the previous year, but this was in part due to the fact that 2001 figures were boosted by $2.1 million in damages from a patent infringement suit. Profits for the nine months were slightly higher than in 2001 as a result of $1.5 million in license fees earned from Biosynexus.
Gail Montgomery, president and CEO of the company, said: "The overall nutritional products industry has not yet rebounded to last year's levels but there are signs of recovery, particularly in the weight loss and sports nutrition segments, areas where Nutrition 21 is strong.
"We are pleased to report that revenues in the third quarter of fiscal year 2002 were 37 per cent greater than the second quarter of fiscal year 2002. We believe the improvement in our base business signals the beginning of an upward trend. Our steadfast commitment to remain cash-flow positive has resulted in five consecutive quarters of positive EBITDA leaving Nutrition 21 well-positioned to deliver better results as business conditions improve."