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Schawk Provides Financial Update

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Press release from the issuing company

DES PLAINES, IL, -- Schawk, Inc., a leading provider of brand point management services, enabling companies of all sizes to connect their brands with consumers to create deeper brand affinity, is providing certain preliminary financial results, updates and other information as follows:

--  Summary of financial position
--  Update on 2008 preliminary financial results
--  Update on cost reduction activities
--  First-quarter 2009 preliminary financial results
--  Outlook regarding amendments to the Company's debt agreements
--  Timing of the annual shareholder meeting

David A. Schawk, president and chief executive officer, commented, "It is clear that the difficulties that consumer products companies and retailers faced during 2008 resulted in significant challenges for Schawk as well. However, as we have done in the past, Schawk used this challenge as an opportunity to aggressively improve our internal structure, processes and controls, all of which we expect will have a positive long-term benefit."

Mr. Schawk concluded, "We have made significant progress toward revising our debt agreements and are working with our lenders to resolve certain inter-creditor matters. In the meantime, we are confident our financial position will continue to support our ability to provide world-class service to our clients. Our market share remains solid, and we continue to maintain strong relationships with our clients. We are aware of a backlog of projects with our packaging clients and are cautiously optimistic that certain of these projects will be initiated in 2009, as clients get more comfortable with the credit and economic environment and start to focus more on consumer needs and the competitive landscape."

The decline in equity at December 31, 2008, compared to the prior year reflects the Company's net loss, driven principally by non-cash asset impairment charges of $54.6 million coupled with the Company's stock repurchase of $27.4 million during 2008. The Company also repurchased $4.3 million of stock during the first quarter of 2009, which contributed to a reduction in total equity at March 31, 2009, as compared to December 31, 2008, but has since discontinued its stock repurchase program.

The above estimate of the Company's financial position at March 31, 2009, is preliminary and subject to the Company's completion of its substantive review of its first-quarter financial results, including its quarterly assessment of any impairments to goodwill.

UPDATE ON PRELIMINARY 2008 FINANCIAL RESULTS

Presently, the Company anticipates it will report net sales of approximately $494.2 million for the year ended December 31, 2008, a decrease of approximately 9 percent relative to the comparable prior-year period. For fiscal 2008, both retail and entertainment clients, which represent approximately 27 percent and 7 percent of annual revenue, respectively, declined 15 percent, while packaging clients, which represent approximately 64 percent of annual revenue, declined almost 7 percent. In the fourth quarter of 2008, total sales declined almost 23 percent versus the prior year, with retail clients declining 33 percent, while packaging clients declined almost 22 percent.

After giving effect to the estimated non-cash goodwill impairment charge and other items described below, the Company expects to report a full-year operating loss of approximately $56.6 million versus operating income of $60.2 million in the comparable prior-year period.

The Company presently anticipates the total amount of the non-cash goodwill impairment charge to be approximately $48.0 million for the fourth quarter and full year of 2008. Previously, the Company had provided an estimate of $20 million to $30 million of goodwill impairment for the fourth quarter and full year of 2008.

In addition to the goodwill impairment charge, the full-year loss for 2008 is also expected to be negatively impacted by approximately $10.4 million of restructuring related charges, $4.3 million of foreign currency transaction losses, $6.8 million in increased professional and consulting fees related to the Company's internal control remediation and related matters, $7.3 million in multi-employer pension plan withdrawal expense, and $6.6 million of impairment charges related to long-lived assets. The total of these items is $35.4 million (of which $8.3 million is non-cash). Excluding the aforementioned items, 2008 operating income would have been approximately $26.8 million. Please refer to the table at the end of this press release for a reconciliation of Non-GAAP measures.

As the Company has not filed its Form 10-K for 2008, the foregoing estimates are preliminary and subject to change. Presently, the Company expects to file its Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008, by not later than the end of May 2009. The delay in filing was principally related to the Company finalizing its 2008 goodwill impairment charge as well as other substantive review issues.

UPDATE ON COST-REDUCTION ACTIVITIES

The $10.4 million restructuring charge in 2008 noted above is anticipated to result in total annual savings of approximately $21.9 million, with an estimated $7.4 million in savings realized in 2008. The Company anticipates additional actions taken and expected to be taken during 2009 will result in restructuring charges of approximately $2.0 to $3.0 million generating annual savings of $6.0 to $7.0 million beginning in the first quarter of 2009 (estimated $5.0 to $5.5 million savings in 2009). Furthermore, the Company has taken other 2009 cost-reduction actions expected to reduce expenses by approximately $6.0 to $7.0 million for the year.

PRELIMINARY FIRST QUARTER 2009 FINANCIAL RESULTS

The Company presently anticipates that it will report net sales of approximately $103.8 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2009, an approximate 18 percent decrease in net sales relative to the comparable prior-year period, with retail clients declining 30 percent, packaging clients declining almost 16 percent and entertainment clients declining 10 percent.

David Schawk added, "Despite the year-over-year decline in quarterly sales, monthly sales trends have been improving since December 2008."

In addition, the Company expects to report an operating loss of approximately $3.3 million versus operating income of $6.7 million in the comparable prior-year period. Included in the loss for the first quarter of 2009 is an estimated $1.0 million of restructuring charges related to the additional 2009 cost-reduction actions mentioned previously, as well as estimated expenses of $2.0 million related to the Company's remediation and related activities.

The above estimates are preliminary as the Company is conducting a substantive review of its first-quarter financial results, including its quarterly assessment of any impairment to goodwill. The Company will file its Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2009, as soon as its internal review of its financial results and the corresponding review by the Company's external audit firm is complete.

OUTLOOK REGARDING AMENDMENTS TO DEBT AGREEMENTS

The Company presently is in negotiations with its lenders to provide financial covenant flexibility under its revolving credit facility and its note agreements in light of the Company's expectations as to its full-year 2008 operating results and the uncertain and adverse economic conditions in which it presently operates. Although the Company believes it is in agreement with its lenders on the principal terms of amendments to its revolving credit facility and note agreements, negotiations among lenders concerning inter-creditor issues are ongoing. The timing for resolution of such inter-creditor issues cannot presently be estimated with certainty. If the Company fails to secure amendments to its debt agreements, it could have a material adverse effect on the Company's business, financial condition and results of operations.

The Company has not recently reported EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation or Amortization) or Adjusted EBITDA as financial measures. Both of these measures are important indicators of performance under the Company's existing revolving credit facility and are consistent measurement tools for evaluating the operating activities of the business from period to period. Adjusted EBITDA for the trailing twelve-month period ending March 31, 2009, is estimated at $32.3 million as compared to approximately $42.2 million for the twelve-month period ending December 31, 2008.

EBITDA for the 2009 first quarter was $1.7 million compared to $12.3 million in the first quarter of 2008. Adjusted EBITDA was $2.8 million for the first quarter, compared to $12.3 million in the first quarter of 2008. These results for EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA are preliminary and are calculated consistent with the schedule presented at the end of this press release.

A reconciliation of this non-GAAP measure is also provided at the end of this release.

EXPECTED TIMING OF THE COMPANY SHAREHOLDER MEETING

Typically the Company holds its annual shareholders' meeting during the third week of May. However, due to the additional time needed to complete the audit of its full-year 2008 results, the Company currently expects that it will hold its 2009 annual meeting of shareholders not later than June 30, 2009.

 

 

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