Form 10-K
Table of Contents

United States

Securities and Exchange Commission

Washington, D.C. 20549

Form 10-K

 

X

 

Annual Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

For the fiscal year ended: February 29, 2012

 

OR

 

 

Transition Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934

For the transition period from              to             

 

Commission file number: 1-8803

Material Sciences Corporation

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

Delaware    95-2673173

 

(State or other jurisdiction of

incorporation or organization)

   (I.R.S. Employer
Identification No.)
2200 East Pratt Boulevard, Elk Grove Village, Illinois    60007

 

(Address of principal executive offices)    (Zip Code)

 

Registrant’s telephone number, including area code: 847-439-2210

 

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:

 

Title of each class

   Name of each exchange
on which registered

Common Stock, $0.02 par value

   The Nasdaq Stock Market

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:  None

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act.    Yes                  No         X        

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Act.    Yes                  No         X        

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.    Yes         X         No                 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Web site, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files).    Yes         X         No                 

Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K.                 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer or a smaller reporting company. See definition of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer” and “smaller reporting company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer                      Accelerated filer                
Non accelerated filer                  

(Do not check if a smaller reporting company)

   Smaller reporting company        X        

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act)    Yes                  No         X        

The aggregate market value of the voting and non-voting stock of the registrant held by shareowners of the registrant (not including any voting and non-voting stock owned by directors, executive officers or other affiliates of the registrant) was $67,079,882 as of August 31, 2011, the last business day of the registrant’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter (based on the closing sale price on the NASDAQ on such date, as reported by The Wall Street Journal Midwest Edition).

As of April 30, 2012, the registrant had outstanding 10,458,599 shares of its common stock.

Documents Incorporated by Reference

Portions of the registrant’s Proxy Statement for the Annual Meeting of Shareowners are incorporated herein by reference into Part III of this Form 10-K.

 


Table of Contents

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

PART I

     3   

    ITEM 1.

  BUSINESS      3   

    ITEM 1A.

  RISK FACTORS      8   

    ITEM 1B.

  UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS      11   

    ITEM 2.

  PROPERTIES      12   

    ITEM 3.

  LEGAL PROCEEDINGS      12   

    ITEM 4.

  MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURES      12   

PART II

     13   

    ITEM 5.

  MARKET FOR REGISTRANT’S COMMON EQUITY, RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS AND ISSUER PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES      13   

    ITEM 6.

  SELECTED FINANCIAL DATA      14   

    ITEM 7.

  MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS      16   

    ITEM 7A.

  QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK      25   

    ITEM 8.

  FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND SUPPLEMENTARY DATA      26   

    ITEM 9.

  CHANGES IN AND DISAGREEMENTS WITH ACCOUNTANTS ON ACCOUNTING AND FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE      51   

    ITEM 9A.

  CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES      51   

    ITEM 9B.

  OTHER INFORMATION      51   

PART III

     52   

    ITEM 10.

  DIRECTORS, EXECUTIVE OFFICERS AND CORPORATE GOVERNANCE      52   

    ITEM 11.

  EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION      52   

    ITEM 12.

  SECURITY OWNERSHIP OF CERTAIN BENEFICIAL OWNERS AND MANAGEMENT AND RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS      52   

    ITEM 13.

  CERTAIN RELATIONSHIPS AND RELATED TRANSACTIONS, AND DIRECTOR INDEPENDENCE      52   

    ITEM 14.

  PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES      52   

PART IV

     53   

    ITEM 15.

  EXHIBITS AND FINANCIAL STATEMENT SCHEDULES      53   

SIGNATURES

     54   

EXHIBIT INDEX

     55   

 

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PART I

This report contains forward-looking statements concerning our future business performance, strategy, outlook, plans, liquidity, pending regulatory matters and outcomes of contingencies including legal proceedings, among others. Forward-looking statements may be typically identified by the use of words such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “seek,” “believe,” “intend,” “plan” and “estimate,” among others. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause our actual results to differ materially from the expectations expressed in the forward-looking statements. Although we believe that the expectations reflected in our forward-looking statements are reasonable, any or all of our forward-looking statements may prove to be incorrect. Consequently, no forward-looking statements may be guaranteed. Factors that could cause our actual results to differ from expectations include the risks set forth under Item 1A, “Risk Factors,” and Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” among other items in this report. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this report.

ITEM 1. BUSINESS

Overview

Material Sciences Corporation and its subsidiaries (“MSC,” “Company,” “we,” “our” or “us”) design, manufacture and market material-based solutions for acoustical and coated applications. We currently report under one segment based on how we view our business for evaluating performance and making operating decisions. Headquartered in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, MSC has been in operation since 1971 and is incorporated under the laws of the State of Delaware.

MSC operates three manufacturing plants in the United States and Europe: one facility in Elk Grove Village, Illinois (“Elk Grove Village”); one facility in Walbridge, Ohio (“Walbridge”); and one facility in Eisenach, Germany (“Eisenach”). We also operate two research and development facilities: one in Canton, Michigan and one co-located with our manufacturing facility in Eisenach, Germany.

We have expanded our global reach and presence as a leading supplier of material-based solutions primarily through subsidiaries, partnerships, alliances and third-party agreements.

   

In South America, we own 51% of the equity and hold 50% of the voting rights in a joint venture partnership with Tekno S.A. (“Tekno”), which manufactures and sells acoustical products.

   

We provide for the production of our acoustical products in Asia through a third party in Malaysia.

   

We have an agreement with a Korean company, Hae Won Steel (“Hae Won”), to produce Quiet Steel® and other laminate products in Korea.

   

We have a subsidiary in China to serve as a trading company for the country, led by our Vice President, General Manager of Asia. Under Chinese law, a trading company may import and sell product in the Chinese market.

Products and Services

MSC is a supplier of engineered material-based solutions. We apply our expertise to solve design challenges for many of the largest automotive and non-automotive manufacturers in the world. Management believes the Company maintains strong customer relationships by providing global engineering innovation, technical application assistance, manufacturing expertise and delivery infrastructure. This combination enhances our ability to deliver cost-effective engineered material-based solutions to customers’ manufacturing facilities on time and within design specifications.

Acoustical Material-Based Solutions. We believe that we are a leader in the development and manufacturing of continuously processed rubber coated and laminated materials that reduce noise and vibration. Our proprietary Quiet Steel is engineered to meet a variety of needs in the markets we serve. The automotive industry is currently the largest market for our acoustical products. These products are being used to replace solid sheet metal parts, including body panels, floor pans, wheel wells, brake shims, oil pans, valve covers and engine covers. In addition, we supply acoustical products for use in other non-automotive applications for appliances, electronics, and other industrial applications. We produce acoustical products at our Elk Grove Village, Walbridge and Eisenach locations. Acoustical products are also manufactured in Malaysia, in Brazil, through our joint venture with Tekno, and in Korea, through our strategic alliance with Hae Won. We anticipate continued expansion through these strategic alliances. Management also believes that our Application Research Center in Michigan and our Application Development Center in Europe provide us with state-of-the-art facilities to accelerate the development

 

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of new products and technologies. Acoustical material-based solutions represented approximately 50% of consolidated net sales in fiscal year 2012, approximately 53% in fiscal year 2011 and approximately 50% in fiscal year 2010.

Coated Material-Based Solutions. We continue to be recognized for our research and development and new product and process development activities involving the continuous, high-speed, roll-to-roll coating of metal. Our coated material-based solutions include painted, electrogalvanized (“EG”), rubber and film protective, decorative and functional coatings applied to coiled metal of various widths and thicknesses. Coated metal material-based solutions represented approximately 50% of consolidated net sales in fiscal year 2012, approximately 47% in fiscal year 2011 and approximately 50% in fiscal 2010.

We believe that coil coating is the most environmentally safe and energy-efficient method for applying paint, rubber and other coatings to metal. In the process, sheet metal is unwound from a coil, cleaned, leveled, chemically treated, coated, oven-cured and rewound into coils for shipment to manufacturers. They, in turn, fabricate the coated metal into finished products that are sold in a variety of industrial and commercial markets. The coatings are designed to produce protective, decorative and functional finishes. The finished coil-coated metal is a versatile material capable of being drawn, formed, bent, bolted, riveted, chemically bonded and welded. Our coated products are primarily used by manufacturers of automotive products, building products, appliances and other industrial products. Manufacturers that use these materials can eliminate or significantly reduce on-site post-fabrication coating lines and the associated costs. Coil coated materials also facilitate the adoption of just-in-time and continuous process manufacturing techniques providing lower manufacturing costs and improved product quality. Use of coil coated metal may, however, require product design or fabrication changes and more stringent handling procedures during manufacturing. Our strategy in coated materials is to develop and produce specialty niche products that meet specific customer requirements.

Electrogalvanizing is a corrosion-resistant steel coating process used primarily in making automobile and light-truck body skins. We manufacture EG solutions at our Walbridge facility. That facility has the ability to provide a full complement of pure zinc and zinc-nickel plated products, and organic coatings. These products offer corrosion resistance—as well as forming and cosmetic advantages—over competitive products, such as plastic and hot-dip galvanized steel. Most EG customers are suppliers of steel to the United States automobile industry. We believe that Walbridge is the only facility in North America capable of meeting the wide-width EG and paint coating steel demand in a single production pass through its line.

Competition

The markets for our material-based solutions—both acoustical and coated—are highly competitive, both domestically and internationally. There are competitors in each product market we serve, some of which have greater resources than we do.

In the acoustical market, we believe that our technology, product development capability, technical support, global manufacturing and customer service place us in a strong competitive position. The competition for acoustical products includes other metal-to-metal laminates, rubber coated metals, as well as mastics, doublers and other add-on damping treatments, which can add cost, complexity and weight in their applications.

Our coated material-based solutions compete with other methods of producing coated sheet metal—principally post-fabrication finishing methods such as spraying, dipping and brushing—and alternative materials such as plastic or stainless steel. MSC has exited the majority of the domestic coil coated paint business that was characterized by excess production capacity and extreme price competition.

Demand for our EG coated products may fluctuate based on variations in steel mill captive coating capacity and continued competition from alternative coating technologies, such as hot-dip galvanizing.

International

We believe that significant international opportunities exist for MSC, particularly for our acoustical products. In an effort to capitalize on these opportunities, we maintain certain distribution, manufacturing, licensing and royalty agreements with agents and companies in North America, Europe, South America and Asia that cover our acoustical products. To further the penetration of our acoustical products in the Asian market, we entered into an agreement with Hae Won to produce Quiet Steel and other laminate products and installed our laminating equipment on one of their lines. Hae Won has paid for the right to use our equipment, and makes royalty payments for the right to produce and sell products. In addition,

 

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we have many Asian initiatives designed to help us penetrate this growing market. During fiscal 2009, we established a trading company in Shanghai, China to enable us to better serve the growing Chinese market for our products. Through our sales and technical offices in Korea, Malaysia and China, we continue to expand existing relationships with appliance, electronic and automotive manufacturers. We continue to pursue a variety of other business relationships, including direct sales, distribution agreements, licensing, acquisitions and other forms of partnering to increase our international sales and expand our international presence.

The following table shows our domestic and foreign net sales for fiscal years 2012, 2011 and 2010:

 

     Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  
Net Sales ($ in millions)    $      %      $      %      $      %  

Domestic

   $ 121.7         89       $ 125.2         91       $ 127.0         92   

Foreign

     15.0         11         12.4         9         10.8         8   

Total

   $ 136.7         100       $ 137.6         100       $ 137.8         100   

Property, plant and equipment, net of accumulated depreciation (“PPE”) that we own in foreign countries were $4.5 million and $5.1 million as of February 29, 2012 and February 28, 2011, respectively. The remaining $30.2 million and $25.4 million in PPE at February 29, 2012 and February 28, 2011, respectively, were in the United States.

Marketing and Sales

We market our products, services and technologies nationally and internationally through our sales and marketing organization and occasionally through the use of agents and licensees. Primary target markets for our products include automotive, appliance, building products, lighting and electronics. We believe MSC is a valued leader in the industries it serves because of our engineering innovation, technical application assistance, manufacturing expertise and delivery infrastructure.

We employ people with noise, vibration and harshness (“NVH”) experience, and they use a proven sales methodology for penetrating automotive markets. These individuals also seek to increase penetration of our products in non-automotive markets to expand sales of all acoustical products. All of our selling activities are supported by technical service departments, which aid customers in choosing the right materials for their manufacturing processes.

We estimate that customers in the automotive industry were the end users for approximately 89%, 84%, and 73% of our net sales in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010, respectively. Due to a concentration in the automotive industry, we believe that direct and indirect sales to individual automotive companies are significant. See Item 1A, “Risk Factors,” for more discussion on automotive sales. The following table shows direct sales to our significant customers that represented 10% or more of consolidated net sales for any of fiscal 2012, 2011 or 2010.

 

     % of Consolidated Net Sales  
Customer    Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  

U.S. Steel

     22      15      7

Chrysler LLC

     17      17      11

Ford Motor Company

     12      18      21

General Motors Corporation

     1      3      10

Backlog. In the Company’s experience, the actual amount of order backlog at any particular time is not a meaningful indication of its future business prospects. In particular, backlog often fluctuates due to changes in the planning activities of our customers and their customers, as well as product introductions or change-overs. Because of the foregoing, backlog should not be considered a reliable indicator of the Company’s ability to achieve any particular level of revenue or financial performance.

Raw Materials. We are generally not dependent on any one source for raw materials or purchased components essential to our business for which an alternative source is not readily available. We are, however, affected by the price and availability of certain raw material inputs such as steel, zinc, nickel, electricity and natural gas. The prices of all these inputs fluctuated in all periods presented, which has affected our profitability. We anticipate the prices for these inputs will continue to be changeable and the fluctuations may be greater as the economy continues to recover. We participate in purchasing programs supported by our customers, usually large original equipment manufacturers, to maintain an adequate supply of metal at competitive prices. See Item 1A, “Risk Factors,” for more discussion on raw material inputs.

 

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Seasonality. We believe that our business, in the aggregate, is not subject to significant swings in seasonal demand. However, changes in production cycles in the automotive industry, particularly around model changes and summer and holiday shutdown periods, can affect sales in those periods.

Environmental Matters

We believe we operate our facilities and conduct our business, in all material respects, in accordance with applicable environmental laws. Our environmental management policies and practices have been certified under ISO 14001 standards. We spent approximately $2.4 million ($1.6 million of expense and $0.8 million on capital projects) on environmental controls at our facilities in fiscal 2012 and have budgeted expense of approximately $1.1 million and capital of approximately $0.5 million for fiscal 2013. For additional information regarding our environmental matters, see Item 3, “Legal Proceedings,” and Note 3 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements, entitled “Commitments and Contingencies.”

Research and Development

We spent approximately $3.9 million in fiscal 2012 for product and process development activities. This compares with $2.3 million and $2.8 million, in fiscal 2011 and 2010, respectively. The increase in research and development spending during fiscal 2012 reflected efforts to increase our product development efforts, including expanding applications for our current products and developing new technologies that leverage our production expertise.

We are dedicated to our research and development efforts. To build on our position as an industry leader, we opened the Application Research Center in Canton, Michigan in June 2006. This testing and development center concentrates on the continued engineering, application and validation of our NVH material solutions and provides technical and development facilities for all of our products. We also operate our Application Development Center in Europe, which has enhanced our ability to develop, test and market our NVH brake solutions in Europe.

When possible, we seek patent and trademark protection for our products. We own, or are licensed under, a number of U.S. and foreign patents, patent applications, trademarks and trademark applications. Patents for individual products extend for varying periods according to the date of patent filing or grant and the legal terms of patents in the various countries where patent protection is obtained. While we consider our various patents, patent applications, trademarks and trademark applications to be important, we do not believe that the loss of any one of them would have a material adverse effect upon our business as a whole.

Employees

As of February 29, 2012, we had 269 full- and part-time employees, which compares with 264 on February 28, 2011, or an increase of approximately 2%. Of this number, approximately 74 were engaged in selling, general and administrative activities. During fiscal 2011, in connection with the sale of certain coil coating assets to Roll Coater, Inc., we terminated 56 union and 22 non-union positions. See Note 17 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements, entitled “Elk Grove Village Asset Sale.” During fiscal 2012, in connection with a restructuring plan implemented in our German subsidiary, we terminated eight production and two SG&A positions. See Note 14 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements, entitled “Restructuring.”

Our Walbridge production employees are covered by a union contract expiring in September 2012. The production employees at our Elk Grove Village location are covered by a union contract expiring in February 2013. Employees at our Eisenach facility are not represented by a union. Our union employees are vital to our operations. We consider our relationships with them and their unions to be good.

Available Information

MSC’s annual reports on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, current reports on Form 8-K and any amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 are available free of charge on our Web site at www.matsci.com as soon as reasonably practicable after electronically filing the reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). We will also furnish paper copies of these filings free of charge upon request. Our corporate headquarters is located at 2200 East Pratt Boulevard, Elk Grove Village, Illinois 60007, and our telephone number is (847) 439-2210. Copies of any materials we file with the SEC are also available at the SEC’s Public Reference Room at 100 F Street, N.E. Washington, D.C. 20549. Information on the operation of the Public Reference Room may be obtained by calling the SEC at 1-800-SEC-0330. In addition, the SEC maintains a Web site that contains reports, proxy and information statements, and other information regarding issuers that file electronically with the SEC at www.sec.gov.

 

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Executive Officers of the Registrant

As of April 30, 2012, our executive officers, who are elected by and serve at the discretion of our Board of Directors, were as follows:

 

Executive Officer    Age      Position(s)    Executive
Officer
Since
 

Clifford D. Nastas

     49       Chief Executive Officer      2001   

James D. Pawlak

     43       Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, Corporate Controller and Corporate Secretary      2010   

Michael R. Wilson

     50       Vice President, Global Operations      2008   

Matthew M. Murphy

     45       Vice President, General Manager of Asia      2008   

Clifford D. Nastas. On December 1, 2005, Mr. Nastas was named our Chief Executive Officer. Previously, Mr. Nastas served as President and Chief Operating Officer since June 2005. Prior to that time he held numerous executive positions with us, including Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer from October 2004 to June 2005; Vice President and General Manager of the Engineered Materials and Solutions Group (“EMS”) from May 2004 to October 2004; Vice President of Sales and Marketing of EMS from July 2003 to May 2004; and Vice President of Marketing of MSC Laminates and Composites from January 2001 to July 2003. Before joining MSC, Mr. Nastas served as the Global Automotive Business Director for Honeywell International Inc., a technology and manufacturing provider of aerospace products, control technologies, automotive products, specialty chemicals and advanced materials, from 1995 to 2001. Mr. Nastas was a director of Quixote Corporation from November 2009 until the company was sold in March 2010.

James D. Pawlak. On February 10, 2010, Mr. Pawlak was named our Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, Corporate Controller and Corporate Secretary. Since joining MSC in 1990, Mr. Pawlak has progressed through several financial positions of increasing responsibility, including serving as Business Unit Controller from September 1996 to July 2005, as Director of Financial Planning and Analysis from July 2005 to September 2006 and as Director of Finance from September 2006 to February 2010. Mr. Pawlak is a registered certified public accountant.

Michael R. Wilson. On February 1, 2008, Mr. Wilson was named our Vice President, Global Operations. Prior to this appointment, Mr. Wilson worked for Ford Motor Company, an automobile manufacturer, in operations and manufacturing engineering for more than 24 years. Mr. Wilson held many operating positions for Ford in stamping and assembly, and he also served as Chief Engineer, Final Assembly Engineering, and Chief Engineer, Paint Engineering, where he had global responsibility for facilities, product launch and materials development.

Matthew M. Murphy. Mr. Murphy has served as Vice President, General Manager of Asia since December 2009. Before this, Mr. Murphy held a number of positions with MSC, including Vice President, Global Transportation Sales and Marketing from March 2008 to December 2009; Plant Manager at the MSC Walbridge Coatings facility from May 2007 to March 2008; Director of Automotive Sales and Marketing from March 2005 to May 2007; Marketing Manager of Automotive Accounts from December 2002 to March 2005; and Strategic Account Manager from April 2001 to December 2002. Prior to joining MSC, Mr. Murphy held positions in manufacturing, sales and marketing with General Motors Corporation, AlliedSignal Inc. and GW Plastics, Inc.

 

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ITEM 1A. RISK FACTORS

The Securities and Exchange Commission encourages companies to disclose forward-looking information so that investors can better understand a company’s future prospects and make informed investment decisions. This Form 10-K contains forward-looking statements, which include, without limitation, statements regarding anticipated results based on management’s plans and assumptions. We have tried, wherever possible, to identify these statements by using words such as “anticipates,” “estimates,” “expects,” “projects,” “intends,” “plans,” “believes” and similar words and terms in any discussion of future operating or financial performance.

Achieving future results is subject to risks, uncertainties and inaccurate assumptions. Should known or unknown risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove inaccurate, actual results could vary materially from those anticipated, estimated or projected here. Many factors also could cause actual results to be materially different from any future results that may be expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements contained in this Form 10-K. We undertake no obligation to update forward-looking statements as a result of future events or developments.

Outlined below are some of the risks that we face that could affect the business and financial position for fiscal 2013 and beyond. However, they are not the only risks that we face. There may be other risks that are not presently known or that management currently believes are immaterial, which could also negatively affect our business or financial statements.

Uncertainty in the global economy, global credit markets and the financial services industry may affect the automotive and consumer/industrial markets, and as a result, our business, financial position and liquidity.

A significant portion of our revenues come from customers in the automotive industry. Purchases of new vehicles are typically discretionary for consumers and may be particularly affected by negative trends in the general economy. While the economy appears to be recovering from the recession, any further economic decline—which results in further significant reduction in the automotive industry and a continued shift away from trucks and sports utility vehicles—would have a material adverse effect on our sales and results of operations.

Severe financial difficulties or key component shortages—including bankruptcy or other problems experienced by any automotive manufacturer or significant automotive supplier or a significant downturn in any sector of the global economy, such as Europe—could have a significant disruptive effect on the entire automotive industry, leading to supply chain disruptions and labor unrest, among other things. For example, if a parts supplier were to cease operations, it could force the automotive manufacturers to whom it provides parts to shut down their operations. This, in turn, could force other suppliers, including us, to suspend production of products for these automotive manufacturers. Severe financial difficulties at any of our major suppliers could also have a material adverse effect on us if we are unable to obtain, on a timely basis, the quantity and quality of components or materials needed to produce our products.

If any of our automotive industry customers becomes insolvent or files for bankruptcy, our ability to recover accounts receivable from that customer would be adversely affected. In addition, any payment we received in the preference period prior to a bankruptcy filing may be potentially recoverable from us by the bankrupt company.

We are under substantial pressure from customers to reduce the prices of our products.

There is substantial and continuing pressure on automotive suppliers to reduce costs, including the costs of products we supply. Cost-cutting initiatives adopted by our larger customers generally result in increased downward pressure on pricing. Because of their purchasing size, they can influence market participants to compete on price terms.

To maintain our profit margins, we seek price reductions from our suppliers, improve production processes to increase manufacturing efficiency, update product designs to reduce costs and develop new products. Our ability to pass through higher raw material costs to our customers is limited, with cost recovery often less than 100% and often on a delayed basis. We cannot assure investors that MSC will be able to reduce costs in an amount equal to price reductions and increases in raw material costs. If we are unable to generate sufficient cost savings in the future to offset price reductions, our gross margins may decrease and our results of operations may be adversely affected.

 

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We face intense competition in the acoustical and coated application industries and failure to successfully compete may negatively affect our business and financial performance.

We operate in a highly competitive business environment and face intense competition from a growing number of competitors, including an increasing number of foreign-based companies that may have greater resources than us. The elements of competition include price, quality and customer service. In the past, our competitors—especially global competitors with low cost sources of supply outside the United States—have aggressively priced their products and/or introduced new products to increase their market share. If we are unable to compete in this highly competitive environment, our business and financial performance could be negatively affected. A significant portion of our sales are EG products. While we believe we offer an outstanding range of EG products and capabilities, we face the risk of substantial competition from other EG facilities and from alternative technologies, such as hot-dipping. We can offer no assurance that MSC will maintain the current volume of EG sales in the future.

We rely on sales to a small number of customers. The loss of substantial sales to any one of them could have an adverse effect on revenues and profits.

We derive a substantial portion of our revenue from a limited number of customers, most of which are North American automobile manufacturers or related suppliers. The loss of substantial sales to any one of them could adversely affect our operations. In fiscal 2012, our three largest customers—U.S. Steel, Chrysler, and Ford—represented 22%, 17% and 12% of consolidated net sales, respectively. During the past several years, the North American automobile manufacturing sector has lost market share in the United States, primarily to Asian competitors. Although we are actively targeting Asian competitors as potential customers, any further market share loss by these North American-based automakers or suppliers could have a material adverse effect on our business.

Many of our customers in the automotive industry have major union contracts with the same automobile workers’ unions. Any extended work stoppage could have a material adverse effect on our operating results and financial position.

Two of our largest customers, and many of their key suppliers, have major union contracts with the same automobile workers unions. Some of these union contracts may expire or be subject to modification during fiscal 2013. Any extended work stoppage that may occur during these negotiations could have a material adverse effect on our operating results and financial position.

Fluctuations in the price and availability of raw materials, which includes steel and coatings, and other inputs used by us—particularly zinc, nickel, natural gas and electricity—could adversely affect our ability to conduct business in a timely and profitable manner.

In recent years, the availability and price of metal have fluctuated, as mills increased or decreased their production in response to economic changes. Those changes have driven price changes that, at times, caused us to increase prices in a competitive market and/or absorb higher costs. We also experienced fluctuations in the price of zinc, nickel, electricity and natural gas in all periods presented. Our future profitability may be adversely affected to the extent we are unable to pass higher raw material costs to our customers. For more information, see the discussion in Item 7A, “Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk.”

The acceptance of our acoustical products for brake shims, engine components and body panel laminate parts by customers in North America, Europe and Asia is critical to our financial performance.

We have made a significant investment in the design and development of our material-based solutions to address NVH problems in the automotive industry. If these solutions are not accepted by our customers in North America, Europe and Asia, our results of operations and financial position may be adversely affected.

If we are unable to successfully introduce and market new products, we may not achieve our targeted financial results.

Management believes that MSC’s past success has been partially due to its ability to design and market new product solutions to meet customer needs. However, if these new product solutions are not accepted by customers, we may not be able to attract new business or maintain existing customers, which would adversely affect our business.

 

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Our financial performance could be adversely affected by an inability to effectively execute and manage our business objectives.

The highly competitive nature of our industry requires that we effectively execute and manage our business including our operating initiatives, which aim to reduce costs and drive productivity and quality improvements. Our inability to effectively control costs and drive productivity improvements could affect our profits. In addition, our failure to provide high-quality, innovative products could adversely affect our ability to maintain or increase our sales, which could negatively affect our revenues and overall financial performance. Additionally, our growth depends on successful new product and process development. Our future results and ability to maintain or improve our competitive position will depend on our capacity to gauge the direction of our key markets, and our ability to successfully identify, develop, manufacture, market and sell new or improved products in these changing markets on a timely basis.

The trading price of our common stock may fluctuate substantially in the future.

In recent years, the trading price of our common stock has fluctuated substantially and may continue to do so as a result of a number of factors, some of which are not in our control. Here are some of the key factors:

   

Actual or anticipated fluctuations in our financial condition or annual or quarterly results of operations

   

Our inability to meet or exceed expectations of analysts or investors

   

Changes in the market valuations of companies viewed as similar to us

   

Changes in key personnel

   

Future sales of our common stock

   

Share repurchase programs

   

Increased competition

   

Realization of any of the risks described elsewhere under “Risk Factors”

   

General market and economic conditions.

These factors may adversely affect the trading price of our common stock—regardless of our actual operating performance—and could prevent investors from selling shares of our common stock above the purchase price they paid. In addition, from time to time stock markets experience extreme price and volume fluctuations that may be unrelated or disproportionate to the operating performance of companies trading on them. These broad fluctuations may adversely affect the market price of our common stock, regardless of our operating performance.

Our customers or suppliers may be affected by natural disasters.

The earthquakes, tsunami and power plant failures which occurred in Japan during fiscal 2011, and the resulting economic disruption, caused some of our customers in the automotive industry to slow down or suspend production because they were unable to obtain materials produced in Japan. If this disruption had continued for an extended period of time, it could have significantly affected the demand for our products or the availability of materials from our suppliers. The floods which occurred in Thailand during fiscal 2012 shut down some of our customers in the electronics industry for several months, which affected demand for some of our products. The occurrence of natural disasters in any part of the world, especially North America, could have a negative effect on our sales or operating costs.

An increase in the environmental risks, costs, recoveries and penalties associated with our past and present manufacturing operations could adversely affect our financial performance.

We are a party to various legal proceedings in connection with the remediation of certain environmental matters. We record reserves for these environmental matters using our historical experience and relevant information available from various third parties. There are a number of assumptions made in establishing these reserves including, without limitation, the estimated extent of environmental damage to any particular site, the available methods of remedy, estimated contribution of various other potentially responsible parties and the discretionary authority of federal and state regulatory authorities in bringing enforcement actions. New environmental issues, including potential new laws related to reducing greenhouse gasses, or changes in the assumptions surrounding existing environmental issues could have an adverse effect on our results of operations and financial condition.

Our business and future development may be adversely affected if we are unable to retain key personnel.

Our success is highly dependent upon the services of key personnel in all areas of our business including, but not limited to, senior management, sales (including people trained in our NVH sales methodology)

 

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and operations, administration and finance. The loss of the services of one or more of these people could have an adverse effect upon the business and plans for future development. In addition, we have significantly reduced management and administrative positions in recent years as a result of cost-cutting initiatives. Lack of management resources could affect our ability to operate and compete in our industry.

Our business could be negatively affected by deterioration in labor relations.

As of February 29, 2012, we had 269 full- and part-time employees, of which approximately 43% were represented by labor unions with separate collective bargaining agreements. As these agreements expire, we cannot be assured that we will be able to renew the collective bargaining agreements on the same or similar terms, or at all. This could affect our business, results of operations or financial condition. In addition, if new labor agreements are negotiated, there can be no guarantee that these will be on satisfactory terms with regard to the efficiency and productivity of the work force. Further, we cannot be assured that the Company will not be subject to work stoppages or other labor disruptions that could have a material adverse effect on its business, results of operations or financial condition.

Shifts in supply models could adversely affect our revenue and profits.

As market conditions change, there may be shifts in the supply model for certain products. We must adapt our pricing strategy accordingly, which may affect the comparability of revenues, operating margins and working capital for the fiscal years presented.

Our access to credit may be limited.

Although we currently have a $7.5 million credit line, our ability to draw on that line of credit is limited by outstanding letters of credit and by a borrowing base of accounts receivable and liens on other Company assets, including inventory, equipment, real property and intellectual property. At February 29, 2012, the net amount available to us under the line of credit was $3.9 million due to borrowing base limitations. There can be no assurances that we will continue to have access to this portion or any of the credit line if our operating and financial performance do not satisfy relevant borrowing base criteria. If we do not satisfy these criteria, and if we are unable to secure necessary waivers or other amendments from the lender of the credit line, we will not have access to this credit. In addition, the lender may, at its discretion, modify the percentage used in computing the borrowing base, which may limit the amounts available for future borrowings.

Although we believe that our operating cash flows, on-hand cash levels and access to credit will give us the ability to meet our financing needs for the foreseeable future, there can be no assurance that they will do so. The lack of the borrowing availability under the credit line and our potential inability to obtain a replacement source of credit could materially affect our operations and financial condition.

ITEM 1B. UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS

None.

 

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ITEM 2. PROPERTIES

We own or lease facilities with an aggregate of approximately 910,000 square feet of space. In addition to the principal physical properties we use in our manufacturing operations as summarized in the table below, we lease sales and administrative offices under operating leases.

In fiscal 2011, we sold our Middletown, Ohio facility and equipment. Additional information concerning this transaction is included in Note 16, “Middletown Asset Sale,” in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8, “Financial Statements and Supplementary Data.”

We consider all of our principal facilities to be in good operating condition and sufficient to meet our near term operating requirements.

 

Location    Approximate
Area in Square Feet
     Ownership or
Lease Expiration
    Description

Elk Grove Village,

Illinois Plant No. 2

     205,000         Owner      Laminating and Coil
Coating Facility,
General Offices

Elk Grove Village,

Illinois Plant No. 7(1)

     281,000         Owner      Coil Coating Facility
(Assets Sold or
Idled), Corporate
and General
Offices

Walbridge, Ohio

     351,000         April 2012 (2)    Electrogalvanizing,
Laminating and Coil
Coating Facility

Canton, Michigan

     57,000         Sept. 2018 (3)    NVH Testing and
Development
Center, General
Offices

Eisenach, Germany

     16,000         Owner      Stamping and NVH
Testing Facility,
General Offices

 

(1) As of April 12, 2010, Roll Coater, Inc. has leased 209,000 square feet of production space in Plant #7 for a minimum of three years to store equipment it purchased. For further information, see Note 17, “Elk Grove Village Asset Sale,” in the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8. We also lease a portion of the office space in Plant #7 to Little Lady Foods. The lease commenced on May 1, 2011 and expires on April 30, 2013, with options to extend through April 30, 2015, subject to mutual agreement.
(2) The lease automatically extends in three-year increments through April 30, 2027, unless either party explicitly cancels the lease prior to each extension date.
(3) The Company has an option to extend this lease in five-year increments through September 2043 which includes an option to purchase beginning in March 2015.

ITEM 3. LEGAL PROCEEDINGS

Note 3 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8, entitled “Commitments and Contingencies,” is incorporated herein by reference.

ITEM 4. MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURES

Not applicable.

 

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PART II

ITEM 5. MARKET FOR REGISTRANT’S COMMON EQUITY, RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS AND ISSUER PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES

Our common stock, $0.02 par value, was listed on the New York Stock Exchange (“NYSE”) under the symbol “MSC” until March 25, 2009, when it was suspended from trading on the exchange. Our common stock was subsequently delisted from the NYSE and was quoted on the OTC Bulletin Board (“OTCBB”) under the symbol “MASC.OB.” On September 20, 2010, trading in our common stock commenced on the NASDAQ Capital Market under the symbol “MASC.” The table below sets forth, by fiscal quarter, the high and low closing sales prices of our common stock during the past two fiscal years as reported by the OTC Bulletin Board and NASDAQ.

 

Fiscal Year   Fiscal Quarter     High     Low  
2012     1 st    $ 7.99      $ 6.18   
    2 nd      8.88        6.61   
    3 rd      8.52        6.07   
    4 th      8.72        7.83   
Fiscal Year   Fiscal Quarter     High     Low  
2011     1 st    $ 3.55      $ 1.70   
    2 nd      4.75        2.75   
    3 rd      5.40        3.80   
    4 th      7.32        5.16   

There were 399 stockholders of record of our common stock at the close of business on April 30, 2012.

Dividends

MSC has not paid cash dividends other than a nominal amount in lieu of fractional shares in connection with stock dividends. If business circumstances should change, the Board of Directors may declare and instruct us to pay dividends.

Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

Our Board of Directors authorized the repurchase of shares of the Company’s common stock as follows:

   

On January 7, 2008, 1,000,000 shares

   

On January 28, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

   

On May 27, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

   

On September 14, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

The shares may be repurchased from time-to-time on the open market, subject to market conditions and other factors, and generally will be funded with internally generated cash. During the twelve months ended February 29, 2012, the Company repurchased 98,316 shares under the January 2008 authorization (completing that authorization), 1,000,000 shares under the January 2011 authorization (completing that authorization), 1,000,000 shares under the May 2011 authorization (completing that authorization) and 352,136 shares under the September 2011 authorization. At February 29, 2012, there were 647,864 shares available for purchase under the September 2011 authorization.

 

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The following table shows the repurchases of common stock made by the Company during the fiscal quarter ended February 29, 2012:

 

Period    Total
Number of
Shares
Purchased
     Average
Price Paid
Per Share
     Total Number of
Shares Purchased as
Part of Publicly
Announced Plans or
Programs
     Maximum
Number of Shares
That May Yet Be
Purchased Under
the Plans or
Programs (1)
 

December 1–31, 2011

     22,906       $ 8.00         22,906         720,599   

January 1–31, 2012

     60,035       $ 7.99         60,035         660,564   

February 1–29, 2012

     12,700       $ 8.00         12,700         647,864   

Total

     95,641       $ 7.99         95,641            
1. All of the shares repurchased during the fiscal quarter ended February 29, 2012, were bought under an open market stock repurchase program (Rule 10b5-1 plan) which was previously announced September 14, 2011, and which is set to terminate on October 31, 2012.

ITEM 6. SELECTED FINANCIAL DATA

The following selected financial data should be read in conjunction with our Consolidated Financial Statements. The information set forth below does not necessarily indicate results of operations in the future. To fully understand factors that may affect the comparability of this financial data, it should be read in conjunction with Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” and the Consolidated Financial Statements and Notes included in Item 8, “Financial Statements and Supplementary Data.”

 

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Selected Financial Data

Material Sciences Corporation and Subsidiaries

 

(Dollars and number of shares in thousands,

except per share data, shareowners of record and
number of employees)

   Fiscal Year  
   2012      2011      2010     2009     2008  

Statement of Operations Data

              

Net Sales

   $ 136,734       $ 137,624       $ 137,820      $ 187,026      $ 234,991   

Gross Profit

     33,668         31,682         16,091        11,085        24,276   

Income (Loss) from Continuing Operations Before Income Taxes(1)

     13,551         12,368         (11,705     (25,628     (10,821

Income (Loss) from Continuing Operations

     28,467         12,044         (11,620     (33,111     (6,464

Net Income (Loss)(1)(2)

     28,467         12,044         (11,620     (33,111     (6,464

Diluted Net Income (Loss) Per Share

   $ 2.49       $ 0.93       $ (0.89   $ (2.41   $ (0.45

Balance Sheet Data

              

Working Capital

   $ 52,457       $ 56,223       $ 31,573      $ 33,176      $ 52,473   

Net Property, Plant and Equipment

     34,735         30,476         41,138        47,746        67,301   

Total Assets

     125,096         113,930         104,050        110,039        164,315   

Total Long Term Liabilities

     15,350         11,795         13,812        13,824        14,576   

Total Debt

                                     

Shareowners’ Equity

     87,980         78,198         62,680        74,220        115,132   

Average Capital Employed(3)

   $ 83,089       $ 70,439       $ 68,450      $ 94,676      $ 121,169   

Cash Flow Data

              

Depreciation, Amortization and Accretion

   $ 4,906       $ 5,572       $ 8,536      $ 10,671      $ 11,389   

Net Cash Provided by (Used in) Operating Activities

     19,329         9,302         2,808        (1,840     12,907   

Capital Expenditures

   $ 9,194       $ 2,359       $ 1,094      $ 3,720      $ 6,694   

Financial Ratios

              

Gross Profit as a % of Net Sales

     24.6      23.0      11.7     5.9     10.3

SG&A Expenses as a % of Net Sales

     15.4      16.4      19.3     18.1     15.5

Income (Loss) from Continuing Operations Before Income Taxes as a % of Net Sales

     9.9      9.0      (8.5 %)      (13.7 %)      (4.6 %) 

Net Income (Loss) as a % of Net Sales

     20.8      8.8      (8.4 %)      (17.7 %)      (2.8 %) 

Research and Development as a % of Net Sales

     2.8      1.7      2.0     2.4     2.8

Effective Income Tax Rate on Continuing Operations(2)

     (110.1 %)       2.6      0.7     (29.2 %)      40.3

Return on Average Shareowners’ Equity

     34.3      17.1      (17.0 %)      (35.0 %)      (5.3 %) 

Return on Average Capital Employed

     34.3      17.1      (17.0 %)      (35.0 %)      (5.3 %) 

Other Data

              

Per Share Information:

              

Book Value

   $ 7.69       $ 6.04       $ 4.80      $ 5.41      $ 8.02   

Market Price:

              

High

   $ 8.88       $ 7.32       $ 2.25      $ 8.67      $ 13.15   

Low

   $ 6.07       $ 1.70       $ 0.51      $ 0.90      $ 5.41   

Close

   $ 8.66       $ 7.32       $ 1.91      $ 1.01      $ 7.38   

Weighted Average Number of Common Shares Outstanding Plus Dilutive Shares

     11,441         12,957         13,049        13,716        14,358   

Shareowners of Record

     399         416         443        559        607   

Number of Employees

     269         264         339        372        543   
(1) In fiscal 2012, MSC recorded restructuring expenses of $583, consisting primarily of employee termination benefit expenses in the U.S. and Germany. In fiscal 2011, MSC recorded a gain of $6,643 on the sales of our Middletown facility and equipment and certain of our Elk Grove Village coil coating assets, a charge of $3,720 related to asset impairment, and a charge of $1,324 related to restructuring expenses in connection with the sale of the Elk Grove Village coil coating assets. In fiscal 2010, the Company recorded restructuring expenses of $1,639, consisting primarily of employee termination benefits, in connection with a restructuring plan that eliminated production and selling, general and administrative (“SG&A”) positions. In fiscal 2009, MSC recorded a charge of $8,092 related to long-lived asset impairment; a gain of $5,897 on the sale of the assets and real property located in Morrisville, Pennsylvania; and a charge of $2,206 related to forward purchase contracts for nickel and natural gas. In fiscal 2008, MSC recorded a charge of $1,319 related to goodwill impairment.
(2) In fiscal 2012, MSC recorded a tax benefit of $18,807 related to the removal of a valuation allowance for deferred tax assets. We recorded a tax benefit of $4,398 in fiscal 2011 and a tax expense of $4,263 in fiscal 2010 to adjust the valuation allowance for changes in deferred income tax assets. In fiscal 2009, MSC recorded a charge of $17,466 related to the valuation allowance for deferred tax assets. See Note 8 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Income Taxes.”
(3) Average capital employed represents the average of the total debt and shareowners’ equity at the beginning and ending of the fiscal year.

 

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ITEM 7. MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS

Executive Summary

We report segment information based on how we view our business for evaluating performance and making operating decisions. For the periods discussed in this Item 7, we report results on the basis of one reportable segment. This segment focuses on providing material-based solutions for acoustical and coated applications. Our acoustical material-based solutions consist of layers of metal and other coated materials used to manage noise and vibration in such products as automotive body panel parts; brake dampers; engine parts; appliances; electronics; and other industrial applications. Our coated material-based solutions include coil coated, electrogalvanized (“EG”) and film protective and decorative coatings applied to coils of metal in a continuous, high-speed, roll-to-roll process for such products as automotive fuel tanks, building products, gaskets, appliances and lighting fixtures. We use a significant level of shared assets and resources across each of our product categories. It is common for a single customer or end-user to purchase products from several product categories.

We have taken steps in recent years to adjust our capacity to match market needs and to exit certain low-profitability coil coating markets. These actions were taken because we recognized that the coil coating marketplace had excess capacity, which was having a negative effect on our results. Leaving these markets allows us to focus our activities in higher margin, more specialized products. These were the significant steps taken:

   

During fiscal 2010, fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2012, management implemented restructuring plans that resulted in the elimination of production and SG&A positions.

   

In April 2010, we sold a portion of our coil coating assets—including the coil coating machinery, related processing equipment, and corresponding customer base—associated with our Plant #7 in Elk Grove Village, Illinois (“Elk Grove Village”).

   

In June 2010, we sold the idled facility and related production equipment located in Middletown, Ohio (“Middletown”).

See additional discussion of all these transactions in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements.

As a result, MSC improved its profitability by moving away from low margin coil coated products and reducing excess capacity and overhead costs. The Company also generated cash by selling the excess non-performing assets. While total sales have declined slightly in fiscal 2012 compared to fiscal 2011, income before taxes—both in absolute dollars and a percent of sales—has improved over this period. However, the sale of the coil coating assets has us more dependent on fewer customers, and on a smaller selection of products, than in prior years. Although MSC has engaged in significant sales of production assets in recent years, it is unlikely this will continue. We will consider selling other non-core assets if the circumstances are appropriate.

At the end of fiscal 2009, based on the weight of available evidence, we determined that it was more likely than not that our deferred tax assets would not be realized. Accordingly, we recorded a valuation allowance and a charge to tax expense of $17.5 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009. During fiscal 2010 and 2011, we continued to be uncertain whether all these assets will be realized. We have been able to use some of the deferred tax assets to offset tax expense resulting from the generation of taxable income. During the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, we determined that it was more likely than not that our deferred tax assets would be realized, based on the weight of available evidence, including improved results over the three fiscal years ended February 29, 2012. Therefore, we reversed most of the valuation allowance remaining at February 29, 2012, recording a tax benefit of $14.8 million. We continue to maintain a small valuation allowance for certain state deferred tax assets which we continue to believe may not be realizable. See additional discussion in Note 8 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Income Taxes.”

 

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Results of Operations as a Percentage of Net Sales (Fiscal Years)

 

      2012           2011      2010  

Net Sales

     100.0          100.0      100.0

Cost of Sales

     75.4             77.0         88.3   

Gross Profit

     24.6             23.0         11.7   

Selling, General and Administrative Expenses

     15.4             16.4         19.3   

Gain on Sale of Assets

                 (4.8        

Asset Impairment Charges

                 2.7         0.3   

Restructuring

     0.4             1.0         1.2   

Income (Loss) from Operations

     8.8             7.7         (9.0

Total Other Income, Net

     1.1             1.2         0.5   

Income (Loss) from Continuing Operations Before Provision (Benefit) for Income Taxes

     9.9             9.0         (8.5

Provision (Benefit) for Income Taxes

     (10.9          0.2         (0.1

Net Income (Loss)

     20.8          8.8      (8.4 )% 

Results of Operations—Fiscal 2012 Compared with Fiscal 2011

 

($ in thousands)    2012      2011      Fav(Unfav)
Variance
     % Fav(Unfav)
Variance
 

Net Sales

   $ 136,734       $ 137,624       $ (890      -0.6

Gross Profit

   $ 33,668       $ 31,682       $ 1,986         6.3

    % of Net Sales

     24.6      23.0      

Selling, General and Administrative

   $ 21,117       $ 22,621       $ 1,504         6.7

    % of Net Sales

     15.4      16.4      

Net Sales

 

($ in thousands)    Net Sales  
Application    Fiscal
2012
     Fiscal
2011
     Variance
$
     Variance
%
 

Acoustical

   $ 68,343       $ 73,094       $ (4,751      -6.5

Coated

     68,391         64,530         3,861         6.0

Total

   $ 136,734       $ 137,624       $ (890      -0.6

Sales for the fiscal year ended February 29, 2012, decreased by $0.9 million from the prior fiscal year.

Acoustical sales declined $4.8 million. Body panel laminate sales declined $4.3 million, due primarily to $3.5 million in lower shipments to General Motors (“GM”), as some models containing Quiet Steel have gone out of production and GM stopped using the technology on certain other models, and $1.0 million of lower shipments to Chrysler—due to lower builds of vehicles which use our product—partially offset by higher sales for Ford applications. Sales related to engine products declined $0.2 million due to lower sales to automotive manufacturers partially offset by higher sales to Class 8 truck manufacturers. Brake sales declined by $0.2 million, with higher sales to Asian and European customers offsetting lower North American after-market shipments. All other sales decreased by $0.1 million.

Sales of coated metal products increased $3.9 million. The increase was driven by $13.5 million in stronger sales of EG products used primarily in automotive body panel applications, as well as $2.5 million in higher sales from our ElectroBrite® product. The prior-year sale of coil coating assets at the Elk Grove Village Plant #7, and the associated revenue, accounted for a $7.5 million reduction in net sales. Fuel tank sales decreased $6.1 million because certain vehicles at Ford have converted from the coated steel supplied by MSC to plastic fuel tank materials. Other coated sales accounted for an increase of $0.7 million, primarily in products used in lighting. Returns and allowances (a component of net sales) improved by $0.8 million mainly due to higher scrap sales associated with a higher production volume mix.

 

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Gross Profit. Gross profit was $33.7 million, or 24.6% of net sales, for fiscal 2012 compared with $31.7 million, or 23.0% of net sales, for fiscal 2011. This change resulted primarily from the two factors detailed below:

   

Sales and operating factors accounted for a $1.0 million increase in gross profit, reflecting an improvement in the coated metal sales mix and gross margin due to lower volumes of coil coating sales, and higher sales of EG coated metal; partially offset by higher material costs.

   

The cost of non-conformance (product quality, net of scrap sales) improved by $0.9 million from a year ago because scrap metal sales—which are a byproduct of our manufacturing process—increased. This increase was partially offset by higher product claim and production scrap expenses.

SG&A Expenses. Selling, general and administrative expenses (“SG&A”) were $21.1 million, 6.7% lower than fiscal 2011’s $22.6 million. The main reason for the improvement was a $1.1 million decrease in expense for the directors’ phantom stock incentive program—because of a smaller increase in the market price of the Company’s stock compared to last year—and decreases in professional fees of $1.1 million and depreciation expense of $0.3 million. These improvements were partially offset by higher product development and employee expenses of $1.0 million due to expanding sales and product development efforts to accelerate our growth.

Restructuring. Restructuring expenses were $0.6 million, 56% lower than fiscal 2011’s $1.3 million. The amount is lower because we engaged in fewer restructuring activities in the current year. See Note 14, “Restructuring,” in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8 for further discussion of our restructuring activities.

Total Other Income, Net. Total other income, net, was $1.6 million in fiscal 2012 compared with $1.7 million in fiscal 2011. The decrease was due to higher interest expense in our German subsidiary, as discussed in Note 19, “German Subsidy,” in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8. Total other income, net includes rental income of $1.1 million and $0.9 million in fiscal 2012 and fiscal 2011, respectively. The rental income was from leases in our Elk Grove Village Plant #7, which had operating expenses of $1.4 million (including depreciation of $0.8 million) and $1.5 million (including depreciation of $0.9 million) recorded in SG&A during the twelve months ended February 29, 2012 and February 28, 2011, respectively.

Income Taxes. Our effective income tax rate was a benefit of 110.1% in fiscal 2012 as compared with an expense of 2.6% in fiscal 2011. The change was primarily due to the reversal of the valuation allowance on our U.S. and German deferred tax assets during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012. See Note 8, “Income Taxes,” in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8.

Results of Operations—Fiscal 2011 Compared with Fiscal 2010

 

($ in thousands)    2011      2010      Fav(Unfav)
Variance
     % Fav(Unfav)
Variance
 

Net Sales

   $ 137,624       $ 137,820       $ (196      (0.1 )% 

Gross Profit

   $ 31,682       $ 16,091       $ 15,591         96.9

    % of Net Sales

     23.0      11.7      

Selling, General and Administrative

   $ 22,621       $ 26,545       $ 3,924         14.8

    % of Net Sales

     16.4      19.3      

Net Sales

 

($ in thousands)    Net Sales  
Application    Fiscal
2011
     Fiscal
2010
     Variance
$
     Variance
%
 

Acoustical

   $ 73,094       $ 66,873       $ 6,221         9.3

Coated

     64,530         70,947         (6,417      (9.0 )% 

Total

   $ 137,624       $ 137,820       $ (196      (0.1 )% 

 

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Sales were relatively flat between fiscal years, decreasing by $0.2 million.

Acoustical sales increased by $6.2 million due to strong demand for our products from our automotive customers. Body panel laminate sales for fiscal year 2011 decreased by $1.3 million mainly due to lower shipments to General Motors as some models containing Quiet Steel® have gone out of production, and General Motors stopped using the technology on certain models. This decrease was partially offset by higher body panel laminate sales to Ford and Chrysler. In addition, sales of Quiet Steel increased $5.8 million because of higher demand in the automotive market for brakes and engine-related products, as well as a move toward a new application in the appliance market. Returns and allowances (a component of net sales) improved by $1.7 million due to reductions in customer claims and scrap, plus higher revenues generated by scrap sales.

Sales of coated metal products declined overall by $6.4 million. The sale of coil coating assets at the Elk Grove Village facility accounted for a $20.1 million reduction. This facility primarily served the appliance and building products markets. Fuel tank sales to Ford decreased by $4.2 million because certain vehicles at Ford have converted to plastic fuel tank materials from the coated steel supplied by MSC. These lower volumes were offset by stronger shipments of EG and gasket products used in automotive applications, as well as higher sales from the launch of our new ElectroBrite® product, all of which increased sales by $14.3 million versus prior year. Returns and allowances (a component of net sales) improved by $3.5 million due to improvements in product mix (lower coil coating and higher EG), product quality and scrap sales.

Gross Profit. Our fiscal 2011 gross profit was $31.7 million, or 23.0% of net sales, compared to $16.1 million, or 11.7% of net sales in the prior fiscal year. The $15.6 million increase in gross profit for fiscal year 2011 came from two primary factors detailed below:

Sales and operating impacts accounted for an $11.8 million increase in gross profit due to:

   

The sales mix improved because of lower coil coating sales (due to the Elk Grove Village asset sale), and higher electrogalvanized coated metal and automotive acoustical shipments.

   

Excess capacity and production overhead costs were reduced by selling the Elk Grove Village coil coating production assets.

   

The fiscal 2010 restructuring reduced operational overhead positions.

The cost of non-conformance (product quality, net of scrap sales) improved by $3.8 million from a year ago:

   

Coil coating sales, which had a high cost of non-conformance, were down due to the Elk Grove Village asset sale.

   

A one time fiscal 2010 $1.1 million warranty expense related to the sold Morrisville facility was not repeated in fiscal 2011.

   

Scrap metal sales, which are a byproduct of our manufacturing process, increased by $1.6 million due to higher production volumes and improved scrap pricing in the secondary market.

   

Overall quality improvements were made in the ongoing operations.

SG&A Expenses. Selling, general and administrative expenses (“SG&A”) were $22.6 million, 14.8% lower than fiscal 2010’s $26.5 million. The main reasons for the improvement were decreases of $4.0 million in headcount-related expenses resulting from the restructuring plans implemented in fiscal 2010 and 2011, as well as lower spending on professional fees of $1.4 million, product development of $0.6 million, and other discretionary expenses of $1.1 million. These improvements were partially offset by higher incentive compensation expenses of $1.9 million due to the reinstatement of the management incentive program in fiscal 2011, as well as $1.3 million higher expense for the directors’ phantom stock incentive program, which increased due to the increase in the market price of the Company’s stock.

Gain on Sale of Assets, Asset Impairment Charges and Restructuring. The Gain on Sale of Assets in fiscal 2011 of $6.6 million was due to the sale of our Middletown, Ohio, facility and the sale of certain production assets in our Elk Grove Village Plant #7. See Notes 16, “Middletown Asset Sale” and 17, “Elk Grove Village Asset Sale,” in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8 for further discussion of the sales. We did not sell any assets during fiscal 2010.

We recorded a charge of $3.7 million to reflect the impairment of the real estate and building improvement assets at our Elk Grove Village Plant #7 in fiscal 2011 and a charge of $0.4 million to reflect the impairment of the real estate assets at our Middletown, Ohio, facility in fiscal 2010. See Notes 15, “Asset Impairment,” and 16, “Middletown Asset Sale” in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8 for further discussion of the impairments.

 

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Restructuring expenses in fiscal 2011 were $1.3 million, 19% lower than fiscal 2010’s $1.6 million. The amount is lower because the fiscal 2011 restructuring plan, executed in conjunction with the sale of certain production assets in our Elk Grove Village Plant #7, had a smaller scope, only affecting certain positions at Plant #7. The fiscal 2010 restructuring plan affected positions company-wide. See Note 14, “Restructuring,” in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements in Item 8 for further discussion of our restructuring activities.

Total Other Income, Net. Total other income, net, was $1.7 million in fiscal 2011 compared with $0.7 million in fiscal 2010. The increase was driven principally by rental income, which increased $0.8 million due to the lease of a portion of our Elk Grove Village Plant #7 facility. We also received dividends of $0.2 million from participating annuities purchased in 1975 as part of a pension plan that was terminated in 1989. These increases were partially offset by a reduction of interest income of $0.1 million due to the settlement of the note receivable we held in connection with the sale of the Morrisville facility. Equity in results of joint venture resulted in income of $0.4 million in both fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2010 (see Note 2 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Joint Venture”).

Income Taxes. Our effective income tax rate was an expense of 2.6% in fiscal 2011 as compared with a benefit of 0.7% in fiscal 2010. The increase was primarily due to higher state income taxes as a result of new laws enacted during fiscal 2011 and the maintenance of a full valuation allowance on our U.S. deferred tax assets.

Liquidity and Capital Resources

We have historically financed our operations with funds generated from operating activities, borrowings under credit facilities and sales of various assets. We believe that our cash on hand and availability under our credit facility will be sufficient to fund our operations and meet our working capital needs for the foreseeable future.

We generated $19.3 million of cash from operating activities in fiscal 2012 compared with $9.3 million and $2.8 million in fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2010, respectively. The main components of cash generated from operating activities consisted of net income of $28.5 million, positive cash flow of $1.8 million from changes in working capital and a cash dividend received from Tekno of $0.6 million. This was offset by non-cash activities of $11.6 million, consisting of the tax provision of $14.8 million, depreciation of $4.9 million, changes in our deferred tax assets of $1.5 million, our portion of net income from Tekno of $0.5 million, and stock incentive plan expense of $0.3 million.

The $10.0 million increase in cash generated from operations from fiscal 2011 to fiscal 2012 is due to several factors:

   

A $2.4 million payment from a significant customer was received on March 1, 2011, rather than February 28, 2011, resulting in a $4.8 million increase in fiscal 2012’s cash generated compared to fiscal 2011.

   

Fiscal 2012 net income after adjustment for non-cash items increased by $2.6 million over the prior year.

   

Fiscal 2011 included severance payments of $2.5 million resulting from the restructuring activities we had in fiscal 2010 and early fiscal 2011. Severance payments in fiscal 2012 were $0.5 million, or $2.0 million lower than the prior year.

   

Other working capital changes, principally inventory, generated $0.6 million more cash in fiscal 2012 than in fiscal 2011.

In fiscal 2012, we invested $9.2 million in capital improvement projects compared with $2.4 million and $1.1 million in fiscal 2011 and 2010, respectively. The fiscal 2012 investments were primarily to improve productivity and expand our production and product testing capabilities. Fiscal 2013 capital expenditures are projected to be approximately $4.2 million.

In December 2008, we sold the Morrisville assets and received $5.0 million in cash and a note receivable for $4.1 million. In February 2009, the note was increased to $4.7 million for inventory sold to the buyer. We received $1.1 million in principal payments through February 28, 2010; reduced the note balance by $1.9 million in consideration for the transfer of all warranty liability to the buyer; and the buyer paid $1.7 million and retired the note in the first quarter of fiscal 2011.

In April 2010, we sold a portion of our coil coating assets, including the coil coating machinery, related processing equipment and corresponding customer base associated with our Plant #7 in Elk Grove Village to Roll Coater, Inc. for $10.0 million ($9.3 million after investment banking fees). In addition,

 

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we entered into a three-year lease agreement to store the purchased equipment. The transaction did not include the sale of any real estate by MSC. The Company recorded a gain on the sale of approximately $4.7 million (net of fees) in the first quarter of fiscal 2011. MSC also recorded $1.1 million of employee termination benefit expenses and $0.2 million of inventory write-off expenses in connection with the sale. See Note 17 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Elk Grove Village Asset Sale” for further discussion.

In June 2010, we sold the idled facility and related production equipment located in Middletown, Ohio to NCI Group for $4.9 million. The Company recorded a gain on the sale of approximately $1.9 million (net of fees) in the second quarter of fiscal 2011. See Note 16 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Middletown Asset Sale” for further discussion.

The Company has a credit line (“Line”) with JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. Interest on the Line is at the bank’s prime rate (3.25% as of February 29, 2012) or Libor plus 1.50%, at our discretion. There are annual letter of credit fees of 1.50% on outstanding letters of credit and a 0.25% fee on the annual unused credit line. The Line is secured by a borrowing base equal to a specified percentage of accounts receivable and liens on other assets of the Company (including inventory, equipment, real property and intellectual property), reduced by outstanding letters of credit, and may require consent from the lender before any significant sales of the equipment or real property securing the Line. In April 2010, the Line was amended to reduce the credit line to $7.5 million and increase the minimum availability covenant to $2.5 million. In May 2011, the Line was amended to extend the expiration date from May 12, 2011, to May 13, 2013. The Line does not contain any material financial covenants.

Due to the borrowing base limitations and outstanding letters of credit of $1.1 million, the net amount available for borrowing at February 29, 2012, was $3.9 million. The lender may, at its discretion subject to the terms of the Line, modify the advance rates used in computing the borrowing base, which may limit the amounts available for future borrowings. There were no borrowings outstanding under the Line as of February 29, 2012, nor were any amounts borrowed during the 12 months ended February 29, 2012, or February 28, 2011.

Our Board of Directors authorized the repurchase of shares of the Company’s common stock as follows:

   

On January 7, 2008, 1,000,000 shares

   

On January 28, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

   

On May 27, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

   

On September 14, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

The shares may be repurchased from time-to-time on the open market, subject to market conditions and other factors, and generally will be funded with internally generated cash. The Company repurchased 98,316 shares under the January 2008 authorization (completing that authorization), 1,000,000 shares under the January 2011 authorization (completing that authorization), 1,000,000 shares under the May 2011 authorization (completing that authorization) and 352,136 shares under the September 2011 authorization during the twelve months ended February 29, 2012. At February 29, 2012, there were 647,864 shares available for purchase under the September 2011 authorization.

The following table provides information about Company purchases of common stock during the last three fiscal years (in thousands).

 

Period    Total Number
of Shares
Purchased
     Total Cost      Total Number of
Shares
Purchased as
Part of a Written
Trading Plan (1)
     Maximum
Number of
Shares that
May Yet Be
Purchased
Pursuant to the
Board
Authorization
 

March 1, 2009 – February 28, 2010

     703       $ 628         703         114   

March 1, 2010 – February 28, 2011

     16         111         16         1,098   

March 1, 2011 – February 29, 2012

     2,450         17,538         2,450         648   

Total

     3,169       $ 18,277         3,169            
(1) On December 4, 2008, the Company entered into a written trading plan to purchase up to 868,971 shares under Rule 10b5-1 of the Exchange Act as part of the existing share repurchase program. The December 2008 10b5-1 trading plan expired on December 31, 2009. On February 25, 2011, MSC entered into a written trading plan to purchase up to 1,114,081 shares. The February 2011 trading plan expired on May 26, 2011, when all of the shares had been purchased. On May 27, 2011, the Company entered into a written trading plan to purchase up to 1,000,000 shares. The plan commenced on June 1, 2011, and expired on September 22, 2011, when 1,000,000 shares had been repurchased. On October 10, 2011, MSC entered into a new written trading plan to purchase up to 1,000,000 shares. At February 29, 2012, 352,136 shares had been purchased under the October 2011 trading plan.

 

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We continually review the potential for investments in our growth markets. In addition, we also evaluate the potential value to shareowners of divesting facilities or other assets that are not performing to our expectations. The Company does not have an active strategy of selling assets, but will consider appropriate opportunities if they will improve shareowner value. During fiscal 2012, the Board of Directors authorized management to develop a plan to sell the building at 2200 East Pratt Boulevard in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, which is currently a non-operating asset. See Note 18 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Plan to Sell Elk Grove Village Building” for further information.

Contractual Obligations. The following table summarizes the contractual obligations we have outstanding as of February 29, 2012 (in thousands).

 

Contractual Obligations    Obligations Due In  
      Total      Less than
1 Year
     1-3
Years
     3-5
Years
     More than
5 Years
 

Operating Leases

   $ 4,748       $ 1,426       $ 1,408       $ 1,128       $ 786   

Purchase Obligations

     9,312         8,819         493                   

Other Long-term Liabilities(1)

     6,716         1,668         2,767         1,335         946   

Unrecognized Tax Benefits(2)

     1,136                                 1,136   

Total

   $ 21,912       $ 11,913       $ 4,668       $ 2,463         $2,868  
1) Other Long-term Liabilities represent the expected payments for the Company’s funding requirements for pension and other postretirement benefits. See Note 6 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements for further information.
2) Unrecognized tax benefits consist of uncertain tax positions for which we are not able to reasonably estimate the timing of the potential future payments. See Note 8 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements for further information.

Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements. We had no off-balance sheet arrangements as of February 29, 2012, other than the operating leases presented in the table of contractual obligations.

Inflation

We believe that general inflation has not had a significant impact on fiscal 2012, 2011 or 2010 results of operations. However, as explained below in Item 7A, “Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures about Market Risk,” we have experienced fluctuating costs for both raw materials and energy that have had an effect on our gross profit in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010.

Critical Accounting Policies

Our significant accounting policies are presented within the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements (see Note 1 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Summary of Significant Accounting Policies”) included elsewhere in this Form 10-K. While all of the significant accounting policies affect our Consolidated Financial Statements, some of the policies may be viewed to be critical. These policies are those that are both most important to the portrayal of our financial condition and results of operations and require our most difficult, subjective or complex judgments and estimates. We base these judgments and estimates on historical experience and various other factors that we believe are reasonable under the circumstances. The results of judgments and estimates form the basis for making judgments about our value of assets and liabilities that are not readily apparent from other sources. Actual results could differ from these estimates under different assumptions or conditions. We believe the following critical accounting policies, among others, affect our more significant judgments and estimates used in preparing our Consolidated Financial Statements.

Revenue Recognition. We recognize revenue when delivery has occurred and the risk of loss has passed to the customer. This is generally upon shipment of goods to customers, except when shipping terms dictate otherwise. We record shipping and handling billed to a customer in a sales transaction as revenue. Costs incurred for shipping and handling are recorded in cost of sales. Volume discounts due customers are recognized as earned and reported as reductions of revenue in the Consolidated Statements of Operations. We also record reductions to revenue for credits issued to customers resulting from scrap credits and manufacturing claims for product defects, based upon historical experience and upon specific claims issues as they arise. We also record as revenue all sales of scrapped and distressed inventory.

Allowance for Doubtful Accounts. We provide for an allowance for uncollectible accounts using both specific and general estimates. We calculate a specific reserve for disputed accounts receivable items by assessing specific receivables that are aged and evaluating the aging of the total receivable pool using both

 

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historical data and current knowledge of particular items. We calculate a general reserve for bankruptcy and insolvency by applying a fixed allowance percentage to the total receivable pool. The allowance for doubtful accounts was less than $0.1 million as of February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011. A 10% increase or decrease in our estimates would result in a negligible change in the allowance.

Inventory. We carry inventory at the lower of cost or market, using either the specific identification or average cost method of cost valuation. Obsolete, damaged and excessive inventories are carried at net realizable value. Historical recovery rates, current market conditions, inventory receipt date and sales plans are key factors used in assessing the net realizable value of obsolete, damaged and excess inventory. We evaluate the overheads allocated to inventory based upon factory run hours and charge costs related to abnormal under-utilization directly against income. We evaluate our ability to sell inventory and recover costs of inventory through the normal sales process and record “lower of cost or market” reserves in cases where we cannot. We evaluate these factors on an interim basis as well as at year end and record adjustments as appropriate to reflect necessary write-downs. There are inherent uncertainties related to determining the recoverability of inventory that may affect our future financial statements as we reevaluate the recoverable amounts during each interim period and year end. We had inventory reserves of $1.3 million as of February 29, 2012, net of scrap inventory that can be sold on the secondary market.

Long-Lived Assets. Long-lived assets consist of property, plant and equipment and are reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount may not be recoverable based on projections of cash flows on a non-discounted basis. If the carrying value of the long-lived assets is higher than the undiscounted cash flows related to the asset group, an impairment loss may be necessary. This loss is measured by the difference between the fair value of the assets and their carrying value. Fair value is determined based on market quotes, if available, or on valuation techniques such as discounted cash flows. The valuation techniques use certain assumptions we make including, but not limited to, the estimated fair market value of assets, which are based on additional assumptions such as public market data; depreciation factors for orderly liquidation, including allowances such as dismantlement and removal; and the relationship between replacement cost (new) and market value based on the age of the assets.

During fiscal 2010, we performed an analysis comparing the carrying amount of our long-lived assets to projections of undiscounted cash flows, using the process discussed above. The analysis indicated our long-lived assets used in domestic and foreign production were not impaired, but certain R&D and corporate assets might be impaired. We engaged third-party valuation consultants to assist us in determining the fair value of these assets as of February 28, 2010. Based on the fair values we determined, the asset values were not impaired as of that date and no adjustment was required.

We did not perform an analysis of the carrying amount of our long-lived assets during fiscal 2012 or 2011, because we did not experience an event or conditions which indicated the carrying amount might be impaired. We did analyze the carrying amount of certain assets affected by the sale of coil coating assets located in Elk Grove Village in fiscal 2011. See Note 15 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Asset Impairment” for further discussion of the analysis and results.

Income Taxes. We account for income taxes in accordance with the liability method. Deferred income tax assets and liabilities are recognized for the future tax consequences. These are attributed to the differences between the financial statement and income tax bases of assets and liabilities and tax credit and operating loss carryforwards using enacted tax rates expected to apply to taxable income in the years in which the differences are expected to be recovered or settled. The recoverability of deferred tax assets depends on our assessment of whether it is more likely than not that sufficient future taxable income will be generated in the relevant tax jurisdiction to utilize the deferred tax asset.

In evaluating our ability to recover our deferred tax assets, in full or in part, we consider a number of factors. These involve all available positive and negative evidence including our past operating results, the existence of cumulative income or losses in the most recent fiscal years and our forecast of future taxable income on a jurisdiction-by-jurisdiction basis. In determining future taxable income, we review the reversal of temporary differences and the implementation of feasible and prudent tax planning strategies. In the event we determine that our future taxable income will not be sufficient to utilize our deferred tax assets, a valuation allowance is recorded. If that assessment changes, a charge or a benefit would be recorded in our statement of operations. We currently believe that we will realize the benefit of our deferred tax assets in the United States and Germany, except for net operating losses in certain state jurisdictions, and therefore we have reversed our valuation allowance for U.S. and German deferred tax assets and will maintain our valuation allowance on our certain state net operating losses.

 

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We may recognize the tax benefit from an uncertain tax position only if it is more likely than not that the tax position will be sustained on examination by taxing authorities, based on the technical merits of the position. The tax benefits recognized in the financial statements from such a position are measured based on the largest benefit that has a greater than 50% likelihood of being realized upon ultimate settlement. There are inherent uncertainties related to interpreting tax regulations in the jurisdictions in which we transact business. If judgments and estimates change, there is a risk that the tax rate may increase or decrease in any period. Amounts accrued for uncertain tax positions were $1.1 million at February 29, 2012.

Retirement Plans. The plan obligations and related assets of defined benefit retirement plans (including the non-contributory supplemental pension plans for some of our officers) and other postretirement health care plans are presented in Note 6 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Retirement and Savings Plans.” Plan assets, which consist primarily of marketable equity and debt instruments, are valued using market quotations. Plan obligations and the annual pension expense are determined by using a number of assumptions including the discount rate and the estimated future return on plan assets. To the extent actual amounts differ from these assumptions and estimated amounts, results could be adversely affected. A one percentage point increase in the estimated discount rate would decrease the net pension expense by less than $0.1 million and decrease the estimated pension liability by $1.6 million. A one percentage point decrease in the discount rate would increase the net pension expense by less than $0.1 million and increase the estimated pension liability by $1.3 million. A one percentage point increase or decrease in the estimated future return on plan assets would have a $0.1 million relative effect on fiscal 2012 net pension expense. The estimated future return on plan assets for the fiscal 2012 pension benefit income calculation is 7.0%.

Environmental Reserves. We are a party to various legal proceedings in connection with the remediation of certain environmental matters. We record these environmental reserves based on historical experience and the extent of relevant information available from various third parties. A number of assumptions are made including, without limitation, the estimated extent of the environmental damage to any particular site, the available methods of remedy, the contribution expected from various other potentially responsible parties and the discretionary authority of federal and state regulatory authorities in bringing enforcement actions. We believe our exposure for these proceedings and known sites is approximately $1.2 million. As of February 29, 2012, the Company has approximately $1.2 million in its environmental reserves.

Accounting Pronouncements

On June 16, 2011, the FASB issued ASU 2011-05, which revises the manner in which entities present comprehensive income in their financial statements. The new guidance removes the presentation options in ASC 220 and requires entities to report components of comprehensive income in either (1) a continuous statement of comprehensive income or (2) two separate but consecutive statements. Under the two-statement approach, the first statement would include components of net income, which is consistent with the income statement format used today, and the second statement would include components of other comprehensive income (“OCI”). The ASU does not change the items that must be reported in OCI. For public entities, the ASU’s amendments are effective for fiscal years, and interim periods within those years, beginning after December 15, 2011. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting this guidance, which may result in changes in the presentation of its financial statements.

 

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ITEM 7A. QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK

We operate internationally in Europe, China, Japan and Malaysia, have a joint venture in Brazil, and have a production agreement with a company in Korea. This means we are subject to potentially adverse movements in foreign currency rates. For the years ended February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011, foreign sales were approximately 11.0% and 9.0% of consolidated net sales, respectively. Historically, the effect of movements in the exchange rates has not been material to our financial position or our results of operations. We believe the movement in foreign currency exchange rates will not have a material adverse effect on our financial statements.

We had a $7.5 million line of credit at the lender’s prime rate of interest (3.25% on February 29, 2012) or at LIBOR plus 1.50%. There was no debt outstanding as of February 29, 2012, although we did have $1.1 million in outstanding letters of credit at that date. See Note 4 of the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements entitled “Indebtedness.”

In the ordinary course of business, the Company enters into purchase contracts for procuring nickel carbonate, zinc shot and natural gas which are commodities used in its manufacturing processes. The intent of entering into these agreements is to mitigate the market risk and volatility associated with the pricing of these commodities. MSC maintains a commodity forward purchase policy which seeks to ensure that at any point in time the majority of the expected consumption over the next 12 months will be secured under a purchase contract at a pre-determined price. The following table lists contracts in place at February 29, 2012. We have applied the Normal Purchase/Normal Sale election to all these contracts.

 

Commodity    Contract Period      Remaining Contract
Obligation (000s)
 

Natural Gas

     11/1/2011 - 3/31/2012       $ 62   

Natural Gas

     4/1/2012 - 10/31/2012         457   

Natural Gas

     11/1/2012 - 3/31/2013         297   

Natural Gas

     4/1/2013 - 10/31/2013         433   

Total Natural Gas

              1,249   

Zinc shot

     3/1/2012 - 2/28/2013         2,487   

Nickel Carbonate

     3/1/2012 - 2/28/2013         749   

Total Commodities

            $ 4,485   

The table below presents the carrying amount of the Company’s nickel carbonate, zinc shot and natural gas inventory as of February 29, 2012.

 

      Carrying
Amount
(000s)
 

Inventory

  

Nickel Carbonate

   $ 644   

Zinc Shot

     391   

Natural Gas

     159   

Total

   $ 1,194   

 

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ITEM 8. FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND SUPPLEMENTARY DATA

The following pages contain the Financial Statements and Supplementary Data as required by Item 8 of Part II of Form 10-K.

 

      Page No.  

Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm

     27   

Consolidated Statements of Operations for the years ended February 29, 2012, and February  28, 2011 and February 28, 2010

     28   

Consolidated Balance Sheets as of February 29, 2012 and February 28, 2011

     29   

Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows for the years Ended February 29, 2012, and February  28, 2011 and February 28, 2010

     30   

Consolidated Statements of Changes in Shareowners’ Equity for the years ended February  29, 2012, and February 28, 2011 and February 28, 2010

     31   

Consolidated Statements of Comprehensive Income (Loss) for the years ended February 29, 2012, and February  28, 2011 and February 28, 2010

     32   

Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

     33   

Schedule II. Reserve for Receivable Allowances and Inventory Reserves

     53   

 

Note: All other financial statement schedules are omitted because they are not applicable or the required information is included in the Consolidated Financial Statements or related notes.

 

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Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm

To the Board of Directors and Shareowners of

Material Sciences Corporation

Elk Grove Village, IL

We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheets of Material Sciences Corporation and subsidiaries (the “Company”) as of February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011, and the related consolidated statements of operations, changes in shareowners’ equity, cash flows and comprehensive income (loss) for each of the three years in the period ended February 29, 2012. Our audits also included the financial statement schedule listed in the Index at Item 15. These financial statements and financial statement schedule are the responsibility of the Company’s management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the financial statements and financial statement schedule based on our audits.

We conducted our audits in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States). Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements are free of material misstatement. The Company is not required to have, nor were we engaged to perform, an audit of its internal control over financial reporting. Our audits included consideration of internal control over financial reporting as a basis for designing audit procedures that are appropriate in the circumstances, but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the effectiveness of the Company’s internal control over financial reporting. Accordingly, we express no such opinion. An audit also includes examining, on a test basis, evidence supporting the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements, assessing the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall financial statement presentation. We believe that our audits provide a reasonable basis for our opinion.

In our opinion, such consolidated financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of Material Sciences Corporation and subsidiaries as of February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011, and the results of their operations and their cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended February 29, 2012, in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America. Also, in our opinion, such financial statement schedule, when considered in relation to the basic consolidated financial statements taken as a whole, presents fairly, in all material respects, the information set forth therein.

/s/ DELOITTE & TOUCHE LLP

Chicago, IL

May 4, 2012

 

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Consolidated Statements of Operations

Material Sciences Corporation and Subsidiaries

 

     For the years ended February 28 or 29  
                      
(In thousands, except per share data)    2012      2011      2010  

Net Sales

   $ 136,734       $ 137,624       $ 137,820   

Cost of Sales

     103,066         105,942         121,729   

Gross Profit

     33,668         31,682         16,091   

Selling, General and Administrative Expenses

     21,117         22,621         26,545   

Gain on Sale of Assets

             (6,643        

Asset Impairment Charges

             3,720         358   

Restructuring

     583         1,324         1,639   

Income (Loss) from Operations

     11,968         10,660         (12,451

Other Income, Net:

          

Interest and Dividend Income (Expense), Net

     (48      79         215   

Equity in Results of Joint Venture

     503         491         385   

Rental Income

     1,107         912         159   

Other, Net

     21         226         (13

Total Other Income, Net

     1,583         1,708         746   

Income (Loss) Before Provision (Benefit) for Income Taxes

     13,551         12,368         (11,705

Provision (Benefit) for Income Taxes

     (14,916      324         (85

Net Income (Loss)

   $ 28,467       $ 12,044       $ (11,620

Basic Net Income (Loss) Per Share

   $ 2.51       $ 0.93       $ (0.89

Diluted Net Income (Loss) Per Share

   $ 2.49       $ 0.93       $ (0.89

Weighted Average Number of Common Shares Outstanding Used for Basic Net Income (Loss) Per Share

     11,350         12,906         13,049   

Dilutive Shares

     91         51           

Weighted Average Number of Common Shares Outstanding Plus Dilutive Shares

     11,441         12,957         13,049   

Outstanding Common Stock Options Having No Dilutive Effect

     318         261         380   

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these statements.

 

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Consolidated Statements of Balance Sheets

Material Sciences Corporation and Subsidiaries

 

(In thousands, except share data)    February 29,
2012
     February 28,
2011
 

Assets

       

Current Assets:

       

Cash and Cash Equivalents

   $ 28,201       $ 35,629   

Receivables, Less Reserves of $696 and $420, Respectively

     20,136         22,581   

Income Taxes Receivable

     141         616   

Prepaid Expenses

     674         428   

Inventories:

       

Raw Materials

     9,019         9,637   

Finished Goods

     11,739         11,269   

Short Term Deferred Tax Assets

     4,313           

Total Current Assets

     74,223         80,160   

Property, Plant and Equipment:

       

Land and Building

     26,149         25,980   

Machinery and Equipment

     100,563         92,272   

Construction in Progress

     1,240         685   

Gross Property, Plant and Equipment

     127,952         118,937   

Accumulated Depreciation

     (93,217      (88,461

Net Property, Plant and Equipment

     34,735         30,476   

Other Assets:

       

Investment in Joint Venture

     2,955         3,152   

Long Term Deferred Tax Assets

     13,024           

Other

     159         142   

Total Other Assets

     16,138         3,294   

Total Assets

   $ 125,096       $ 113,930   

Liabilities

       

Current Liabilities:

       

Accounts Payable

   $ 13,364       $ 15,126   

Accrued Payroll Related Expenses

     3,113         2,718   

Accrued Expenses

     5,289         6,093   

Total Current Liabilities

     21,766         23,937   

Long-Term Liabilities:

       

Pension and Postretirement Liabilities

     8,500         7,015   

Other

     6,850         4,780   

Total Long-Term Liabilities

     15,350         11,795   

Commitments and Contingencies

               

Shareowners’ Equity

       

Preferred Stock, $1.00 Par Value; 10,000,000 Shares Authorized; 1,000,000 Designated Series B Junior Participating Preferred; None Issued

               

Common Stock, $.02 Par Value; 40,000,000 Shares Authorized; 19,030,983 Shares Issued and 10,470,199 Shares Outstanding as of February 29, 2012, and 18,993,892 Shares Issued and 12,893,560 Shares Outstanding as of February 28, 2011

     381         380   

Additional Paid-In Capital

     80,440         80,004   

Treasury Stock at Cost, 8,540,784 Shares as of February 29, 2012, and 6,090,332 Shares as of February 28, 2011

     (74,423      (56,885

Retained Earnings

     84,052         55,585   

Accumulated Other Comprehensive Loss

     (2,470      (886

Total Shareowners’ Equity

     87,980         78,198   

Total Liabilities and Equity

   $ 125,096       $ 113,930   

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these statements.

 

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Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows

Material Sciences Corporation and Subsidiaries

 

     For the years ended February 28 or 29  
(In thousands)    2012      2011      2010  

Cash Flows From:

          

Operating Activities:

          

Net Income (Loss)

   $ 28,467       $ 12,044       $ (11,620

Adjustments to Reconcile Net Income (Loss) to Net Cash Provided by Operating Activities:

          

Depreciation, Amortization and Accretion

     4,906         5,572         8,536   

Gain on Sale of Assets

             (6,643        

Non-Cash Loss on Impairment of Fixed Assets

             3,720         358   

Non-Cash Loss on Derivative Instruments

                     31   

Cash Distribution Received from Joint Venture

     586         763           

Deferred Income Taxes

     (14,824                

Compensatory Effect of Stock Plans

     299         204         83   

Other, Net

     (1,916      (738      (450

Changes in Assets and Liabilities:

          

Receivables

     2,390         (1,881      (7,565

Income Taxes

     121         (12      1,963   

Prepaid Expenses

     (248      56         177   

Inventories

     98         (1,008      4,912   

Accounts Payable

     (1,725      (2,172      6,034   

Accrued Expenses

     (280      (1,879      (194

Other, Net

     1,455         1,276         543   

Net Cash Provided by Continuing Operations

     19,329         9,302         2,808   

Investing Activities:

          

Capital Expenditures

     (9,194      (2,359      (1,094

Proceeds from Sale of Assets

             14,089           

Proceeds from Note Receivable

             1,732         1,059   

Net Cash Provided by (Used in) Investing Activities

     (9,194      13,462         (35

Financing Activities:

          

Purchase of Treasury Stock

     (17,649              (627

Issuance of Common Stock

     138         16         4   

Net Cash Provided by (Used in) Financing Activities

     (17,511      16         (623

Effect of Exchange Rate Changes on Cash

     (52      (17      52   

Net Increase (Decrease) in Cash

     (7,428      22,763         2,202   

Cash and Cash Equivalents at Beginning of Year

     35,629         12,866         10,664   

Cash and Cash Equivalents at End of Year

   $ 28,201       $ 35,629       $ 12,866   

Non-Cash Transactions:

          

Capital Expenditures in Accounts Payable at Year End

   $ 854       $ 873       $ 512   

Reduction of Note Receivable for Transfer of Warranty Liability

   $       $       $ 1,862   

Treasury Stock Purchases in Accrued Liabilities at Year-End

   $       $ 111       $   

Supplemental Cash Flow Disclosures:

          

Interest Paid

   $ 35       $ 37       $ 47   

Net Income Taxes Paid (Refunded), Net

   $ 356       $ 463       $ (1,995

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these statements.

 

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Consolidated Statements of Changes in Shareowners’ Equity

Material Sciences Corporation and Subsidiaries

 

     Common Stock     

Additional
Paid-In

Capital

    

Retained

Earnings

    Treasury Stock  
(In thousands, except share data)    Shares      Amount           Shares     Amount  

Balance as of February 28, 2009

     18,977,364       $ 380       $ 79,696       $ 55,161        (5,371,777   $ (56,146

Net Loss

                             (11,620              

Issuance of Common Stock, Net of Cancellations

     2,432                 5                         

Compensatory Effect of Stock Plans

                     83                         

Purchase of Treasury Stock

                                    (702,790     (628

Balance as of February 28, 2010

     18,979,796       $ 380       $ 79,784       $ 43,541        (6,074,567   $ (56,774

Net Income

                             12,044                 

Issuance of Common Stock, Net of Cancellations

     14,096                 16                         

Compensatory Effect of Stock Plans

                     204                         

Purchase of Treasury Stock

                                    (15,765     (111

Balance as of February 28, 2011

     18,993,892       $ 380       $ 80,004       $ 55,585        (6,090,332   $ (56,885

Net Income

                             28,467                 

Issuance of Common Stock, Net of Cancellations

     37,091         1         137                         

Compensatory Effect of Stock Plans

                     299                         

Purchase of Treasury Stock

                                    (2,450,452     (17,538

Balance as of February 29, 2012

     19,030,983       $ 381       $ 80,440       $ 84,052        (8,540,784   $ (74,423

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these statements.

 

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Consolidated Statements of Comprehensive Income (Loss)

Material Sciences Corporation and Subsidiaries

 

     For the years ended February 28 or February 29  
(In thousands)            2012              2011              2010  

Net Income (Loss)

   $ 28,467       $ 12,044       $ (11,620

Other Comprehensive Income (Loss):

          

Foreign Currency Translation Adjustments

     (294      359         897   

Retirement Liability, Net of Benefit for Income Taxes of $795, $0, and $0, Respectively

     (1,290      3,006         (277

Total Other Comprehensive Income (Loss)

     (1,584      3,365         620   

Comprehensive Income (Loss)

   $ 26,883       $ 15,409       $ (11,000

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these statements.

 

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Material Sciences Corporation and Subsidiaries

NOTES TO THE CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

Note 1: Summary of Significant Accounting Policies

Nature of Operations

The operations of Material Sciences Corporation and its wholly owned subsidiaries (“MSC,” “Company,” “we,” “our” or “us”) consist of providing material-based solutions for acoustical and coated applications. Principal markets include automotive, appliance, building products, lighting and electronics.

Summary of Significant Accounting Policies

The significant accounting policies of MSC, as summarized below, conform to accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (“GAAP”). The preparation of the Company’s financial statements in conformity with GAAP requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the amounts reported and the disclosures in the financial statements. Actual results could differ from those estimates. Significant estimates include deferred tax asset valuation allowances, reserves for inventory and receivable exposures, product claims, income taxes, health and workers compensation benefits, pension and postretirement benefits and contingencies. A reclassification has been made to the prior years’ consolidated financial statements to conform to the fiscal 2012 presentation—“Rental Income” was reclassified from “Other, Net” on the Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations.

Principles of Consolidation

The accompanying consolidated financial statements include the accounts for MSC after all intercompany transactions have been eliminated. In South America, the Company owns 51% of the equity and holds 50% of the voting rights in a joint venture partnership with Tekno S.A. (“Tekno”), which manufactures and sells acoustical products. Under the terms of the Tekno agreement, significant actions require unanimous consent of all parties and, as a result, MSC does not have a controlling interest in Tekno. Accordingly, the Company accounts for Tekno under the equity method.

Fair Value of Financial Instruments

The Company’s financial instruments include cash and cash equivalents, accounts receivable and accounts payable. The carrying amounts of these financial assets and liabilities approximate fair value due to the short maturities of these instruments.

Cash and Cash Equivalents

Cash and cash equivalents consist of highly liquid investments with original maturities of three or fewer months.

Accounts Receivable

Accounts receivable are recorded at their estimated fair value net of allowances for doubtful accounts, claims, discounts and other credits expected to be granted to customers. The Company provides reserves for uncollectible receivables due to customer bankruptcy, insolvency or disputes over terms and conditions. The methodology for calculating the allowance for doubtful accounts includes an assessment of specific receivables that are aged and an assessment of the aging of the total receivable pool. MSC also records reductions of revenue for credits issued to customers resulting from manufacturing claims for product defects based upon historical experience and upon specific claims issues as they arise. Any differences between these estimates and actual costs are recorded on a monthly basis and are reflected in the historical experience prospectively. Total accounts receivable reserves were $0.7 million and $0.4 million at February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011, respectively.

Inventories

Inventories are stated at the lower of cost or market, using either the specific identification or average cost method of cost valuation. Due to the continuous nature of the Company’s operations, work-in-process inventories are not material. MSC holds some of its inventory at outside processors and locations. The Company had approximately $2.7 million and $4.5 million of inventory at outside processors at February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011, respectively.

 

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Commodity Contracts

We are exposed to certain risks related to ongoing business operations. We enter into derivative instruments with the objective of managing our financial and operational exposure arising from these risks. The primary risk managed by using derivative instruments is commodity price risk. From time-to-time in the ordinary course of business, the Company enters into purchase contracts for procuring nickel carbonate, zinc shot and natural gas, which are commodities used in its manufacturing processes. These agreements are intended to mitigate the market risk and volatility associated with the pricing of these commodities. MSC maintains a commodity forward purchase policy, which seeks to ensure that at any time the majority of the expected consumption over the next 12 months is secured under a purchase contract at a predetermined price. When we enter into these contracts, we apply the Normal Purchase/Normal Sale election for each of them, which excludes them from being accounted for as derivative instruments at fair value as long as they qualify for the election.

Long-Lived Assets

Property, plant and equipment are recorded at cost. Improvements and replacements are capitalized, while expenditures for maintenance and repairs are charged to expense as incurred. Depreciation is computed using the straight-line method over the assets’ estimated useful lives as follows: buildings and building improvements, 5 to 20 years; operating equipment, 5 to 20 years; furniture and fixtures, 5 to 10 years; software, 5 years; motor vehicles, 3 years. Leasehold improvements are amortized over the lesser of their expected useful life or the remaining life of the lease.

Long-lived assets are reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount may not be recoverable, based on projections of non-discounted cash flows. If the carrying value of the depreciable long-lived assets is higher than the undiscounted cash flows related to the asset group, an impairment loss may be necessary. The impairment would be measured by the difference between the fair value of the assets and their carrying value. Fair value is determined based on market quotes, if available, or based on valuation techniques such as discounted cash flows. The valuation techniques require us to make assumptions, including, but not limited to, estimated fair value of assets, which are based on additional assumptions, such as public market data; depreciation factors for orderly liquidation, including allowances such as dismantlement and removal; and the relationship between replacement cost and market value based on the age of the assets.

Revenue Recognition

The Company recognizes revenue when delivery has occurred and the risk of loss has passed to the customer. This is generally upon shipment of goods to customers, except when shipping terms dictate otherwise. The Company records shipping and handling billed to a customer in a sales transaction as revenue. Costs incurred for shipping and handling are recorded in cost of sales. Volume discounts due customers are recognized as earned and reported as reductions of revenue in the Consolidated Statements of Operations.

Research and Development

The Company expenses all research and product development costs in the period incurred. Research and product development expenses of $3.9 million, $2.3 million and $2.8 million in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010, respectively, are included in selling, general and administrative expenses on the Consolidated Statements of Operations.

Foreign Currency

The Company’s international operations are translated into U.S. dollars using current exchange rates at the balance sheet date for assets and liabilities. A weighted average exchange rate is used to translate sales, expenses, gains and losses. The currency translation adjustments are reflected in accumulated other comprehensive loss in Shareowners’ Equity. Transactions denominated in currencies other than U.S. dollars are translated at the spot rate when the transaction is settled. Any gains or losses from the settlement are reflected in other income in the Consolidated Statement of Operations.

Income Taxes

Deferred income taxes have been provided to show the effect of temporary differences between the tax bases of assets and liabilities and their reported amounts in the financial statements. A valuation allowance is provided for deferred tax assets if it is more likely than not that these items will either expire before we

 

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are able to realize their benefit, or that future deductibility is uncertain. At the end of fiscal 2009, we determined that we needed to provide a valuation allowance for a substantial portion of our deferred tax assets, and recorded a $17.5 million charge to income. We recorded a tax benefit of $4.4 million in fiscal 2011 and a tax expense of $4.3 million in fiscal 2010 to adjust the valuation allowance for changes in deferred income tax assets. During fiscal 2012 we recorded a tax benefit of $4.0 million to reverse the valuation allowance for changes in deferred income tax assets during the year. At the end of fiscal 2012, we recorded a tax benefit of $14.8 million to reverse the remaining valuation allowance on all but certain state net operating losses. See Note 8 entitled “Income Taxes” for further discussion of this reserve.

Equity Plans

The Company has one active equity award plan: the Material Sciences Corporation 1992 Omnibus Awards Plan for Key Employees (“1992 Plan”). There are 3,262,500 shares authorized under the 1992 Plan to provide stock options, restricted stock and other equity awards under various programs. MSC also has one inactive equity award plan: the Material Sciences Corporation 2001 Compensation Plan for Non-Employee Directors (“2001 Directors Plan”), which expired on February 29, 2004. See Note 10 entitled “Equity and Compensation Plans” for additional discussion on both plans.

The Company recorded $0.3 million, $0.2 million and $0.1 million of compensation expense related to stock options for each year in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010. See Note 10 entitled “Equity and Compensation Plans” for a complete discussion of these items.

Accumulated Other Comprehensive Loss

The components of accumulated other comprehensive loss at February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011, are as follows:

 

(in thousands)    February 29, 2012      February 28, 2011  

Foreign Currency Translation

   $ 1,764       $ 2,059   

Pension Liability, Net of Tax of $2,208 and $1,483

     (4,911      (3,735

Other Post Retirement Liabilities, Net of Tax of $935 and $865

     677         790   

Total

   $ (2,470    $ (886

Recent Accounting Pronouncements

On June 16, 2011, the FASB issued ASU 2011-05, which revises the manner in which entities present comprehensive income in their financial statements. The new guidance removes the presentation options in ASC 220 and requires entities to report components of comprehensive income in either (1) a continuous statement of comprehensive income or (2) two separate but consecutive statements. Under the two-statement approach, the first statement would include components of net income, which is consistent with the income statement format used today, and the second statement would include components of other comprehensive income (“OCI”). The ASU does not change the items that must be reported in OCI. For public entities, the ASU’s amendments are effective for fiscal years, and interim periods within those years, beginning after December 15, 2011. The Company is currently evaluating the impact of adopting this guidance, which may result in changes in the presentation of its financial statements.

Consideration of Events Subsequent to the Date of the Consolidated Balance Sheet

The Company recognizes in the consolidated financial statements the effects of all subsequent events that provide additional evidence about conditions that existed at the date of the Consolidated Balance Sheet, including the estimates inherent in the process of preparing the consolidated financial statements. MSC does not recognize subsequent events that provide evidence about conditions that did not exist at the date of the Consolidated Balance Sheet but arose after that date and before the consolidated financial statements are issued. For these purposes, and relating to the February 29, 2012, Consolidated Balance Sheet, the Company has evaluated events occurring after that date through the date of this report. Any significant events that occurred after February 29, 2012, and which had an effect on the February 29, 2012, consolidated financial statements are reflected in these statements or the related notes, and are identified as subsequent events.

 

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Note 2: Joint Venture

In November 2000, a subsidiary of MSC formed a joint venture with Tekno to manufacture and sell Quiet Steel® and disc brake noise damper material for the South American market. Tekno’s sales were $4.6 million, $4.5 million and $4.2 million in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010, respectively. Tekno’s income was $1.0 million, $1.0 million and $0.8 million in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010, respectively. MSC owns 51% of the equity interest and holds 50% of the voting interest in the joint venture.

Under the equity method, MSC includes its portion of Tekno’s results of operations in the Consolidated Statements of Operations under equity in results of joint venture. The equity in results of joint venture was net income of $0.5 million, $0.5 million and $0.4 million in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010, respectively. The Company received cash dividends of $0.6 million, $0.8 million and zero in fiscal 2012, fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2010, respectively.

Note 3: Commitments and Contingencies

MSC is a party to various legal proceedings in connection with the remediation of certain environmental matters as detailed below. We record these environmental reserves based upon historical experience and the extent of relevant information available from various third parties. A number of assumptions are made including, without limitation, the estimated extent of the environmental damage to any particular site, the available methods of remedy, the contribution expected from various other potentially responsible parties (“PRP”) and the discretionary authority of federal and state regulatory authorities in bringing enforcement actions.

In 1984, MSC was named as a PRP under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980 (“CERCLA”) for the surface, soil and ground water contamination at a Superfund site in Gary, Indiana. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana entered a Consent Decree between the government and certain PRPs (including MSC) on the scope of the remediation work at the site. We receive periodic updates on the projected costs of the remediation work from the environmental consultant employed by certain PRPs (including MSC) to manage the remediation project. Remediation work is ongoing and we maintain a letter of credit for approximately $1.0 million to secure our estimated share of these expenses. The estimate of our liability for this site was $0.8 million at February 29, 2012.

In 2003, MSC, along with many other companies, was named as a PRP by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“USEPA”) under CERCLA at the Lake Calumet Cluster Site in Chicago, Illinois, for allegedly sending certain waste from its Elk Grove Village facility to the site. The Illinois EPA (“ILEPA”) assumed the role of lead agency for the site and is conducting soil grading work, capping and a cost analysis at the site with funds made available by the state. No lawsuits have been filed against any of the PRPs, but it is likely that the USEPA will seek reimbursement of its costs. In March 2010, the USEPA indicated it will make Lake Calumet a Superfund site, which will provide additional federal funds for the cleanup. To date, we have not received any notice that this designation has occurred. The Company cannot determine what effect, if any, this change in designation will have on its liability. The estimate of the Company’s liability for this site was $0.3 million at February 29, 2012.

In 1998, the California Environmental Protection Agency (“CEPA”) named MSC and many other entities as PRPs under CERCLA at the Chatham Brothers Barrelyard Site in Escondido, California (“Chatham Site”) for surface, soil and ground water contamination associated with former waste handling activities at the site. CEPA alleged that a predecessor to MSC arranged for the transportation and treatment of waste handled at the site. California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control (“DTSC”) is acting as lead agency for the investigation and cleanup of the Chatham Site and has approved a Remedial Action Plan for long-term remediation at the site. The estimate of the Company’s liability for this site was $0.1 million at February 29, 2012.

MSC’s environmental reserves were approximately $1.2 million and $1.3 million as of February 29, 2012 and February 28, 2011, respectively. The Company does not believe that the outcome of its environmental legal proceedings will have a material adverse effect on its results of operations, financial position or cash flows, given the reserves recorded as of February 29, 2012, and, where applicable, taking into account contributions from other PRPs. There are, however, a number of uncertainties including, without limitation, the cost of site cleanup, the discretionary authority of federal and state regulatory authorities in bringing enforcement actions and other factors that affect the Company’s range of exposures.

 

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Other Matters

MSC is also a party to various legal actions and customer disputes arising in the ordinary course of its business. These legal actions and customer disputes cover a broad variety of claims spanning MSC’s entire business. The Company believes that the resolution of these legal actions and customer disputes will not, individually or in the aggregate, have a material adverse effect on its results of operations, financial position or cash flows.

Note 4: Indebtedness

The Company has a credit line (“Line”) with JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. Interest on the Line is at the bank’s prime rate (3.25% as of February 29, 2012) or Libor plus 1.50%, at our discretion. There are annual letter of credit fees of 1.50% on outstanding letters of credit and a 0.25% fee on the annual unused credit line. The Line is secured by a borrowing base equal to a specified percentage of accounts receivable and liens on other assets of the Company (including inventory, equipment, real property and intellectual property), reduced by outstanding letters of credit, and may require consent from the lender before any significant sales of the equipment or real property securing the Line. In April 2010, the Line was amended to reduce the credit line to $7.5 million and increase the minimum availability covenant to $2.5 million. In May 2011, the Line was amended to extend the expiration date from May 12, 2011, to May 13, 2013. The Line does not contain any material financial covenants.

Due to the borrowing base limitations and outstanding letters of credit of $1.1 million, the net amount available for borrowing at February 29, 2012, was $3.9 million. The lender may, at its discretion subject to the terms of the Line, modify the advance rates used in computing the borrowing base, which may limit the amounts available for future borrowings. There were no borrowings outstanding under the Line as of February 29, 2012, nor were any amounts borrowed during the 12 months ended February 29, 2012, or February 28, 2011.

Note 5: Leases

MSC leases one manufacturing facility (Walbridge, Ohio) under a lease ending April 30, 2012, which automatically extends in three-year increments through April 30, 2027, unless either party explicitly cancels the lease prior to each extension date. The Company also leases its Application Research Center in Michigan under a lease ending in September 2018, with the option to extend in five-year increments through September 2043. The Company is in compliance with all the terms of these leases. Other equipment is leased under non-cancelable operating leases. The table below presents future minimum lease payments. We also rent portions of our Plant #7 facility in Elk Grove Village, IL, and will recognize $1.3 million in future income under existing contractual rental agreements through the first quarter of fiscal 2014. These agreements have renewal options, provided both parties agree.

 

(in thousands)        

2013

   $ 1,426   

2014

     820   

2015

     588   

2016

     571   

2017

     557   

2018 and Thereafter

     786   

Total Minimum Lease Payments

   $ 4,748   

Total rental expense under operating leases was $1.5 million in fiscal 2012, $1.5 million in fiscal 2011 and $1.8 million in fiscal 2010. Rental income was $1.1 million, $0.9 million and $0.2 million in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010, respectively.

Note 6: Retirement and Savings Plans

As of February 29, 2012, the Company had one defined contribution retirement plan qualifying under the Internal Revenue Code Section 401(k): Material Sciences Corporation Savings & Investment Plan (the

 

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“SIP”). All employees of MSC are automatically enrolled in the SIP for a basic contribution, unless they elect not to participate. Employees may also elect to contribute more or less than the basic contribution level. Mercer Trust Company is the custodial trustee of all SIP assets and participant loans.

Under the SIP, participants may contribute up to 85% of their annual compensation, as defined in the SIP, subject to certain Internal Revenue Code limitations. The Company may, at its discretion, make matching contributions to the SIP at varying rates by location on the first 6% of base compensation of participating employees. MSC also makes an annual contribution into the SIP at varying rates by location for employees who are active participants in the SIP. The cost of the SIP was $0.5 million in fiscal 2012, fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2010.

MSC has non-contributory defined benefit pension plans that cover some of its employees. The Company contributes amounts required to meet ERISA funding requirements for these defined benefit plans. All the defined benefit plans are frozen, so no additional benefits accrue under them and there are no new participants. In addition to the benefits previously described, some former MSC officers participated in a non-contributory supplemental pension plan that is still outstanding.

The Company provides some of its retired employees with certain postretirement health care benefits, which MSC may periodically amend or modify. Certain employees may be eligible for these benefits if they reach normal retirement age while employed by the Company.

During the third quarter of fiscal 2011, the Company identified an error in computing benefit costs for certain of its postretirement benefit plans. Benefit costs in fiscal 2008, 2009, 2010 and the first two quarters of fiscal 2011 were overstated because a reduction in benefits implemented in fiscal 2008 was not reflected in the computation of benefit costs for those periods. The cumulative effect of the error at November 30, 2010, was a $0.4 million reduction in expense, of which $0.2 million related to prior fiscal years, and a reduction of the accrued liability at November 30, 2010, of $0.6 million. MSC recorded the cumulative effect in the third quarter of fiscal 2011.

Additionally, in November 2010 the Company notified beneficiaries of its postretirement benefit plans that the plans would be amended and the benefits available under the plans would be reduced effective January 1, 2011. The effect of the amendments was a reduction of the accrued liability at November 30, 2010, of $1.5 million. Actuarial adjustments, changes in employee participation, and normal benefit payments accounted for an additional reduction of the accrued liability at November 30, 2010, of $0.3 million. In total, the liability for postretirement benefits was reduced by $2.4 million at November 30, 2010.

The following tables present a reconciliation of the change in benefit obligation, a reconciliation of the change in plan assets, a statement of the funded status of the plans, the components of net periodic benefit cost and the assumptions used in determining the plans’ funded status and periodic cost. The assumptions do not consider salary increases as the majority of plans are either frozen or do not account for salary increases in determining future benefits.

 

     Pension Benefits      Postretirement Benefits  
(in thousands except %)    2012      2011      2012      2011  

Change in Benefit Obligation:

               

Obligation, March 1

   $ 14,475       $ 14,032       $ 1,842       $ 4,963   

Service Cost Benefits Earned During the Period

             20         63   

Interest Cost on Benefit Obligation

     678         673         86         205   

Plan Amendments

                               

Actuarial (Gain) Loss

     2,080         1,118         94         (1,154

Benefit Payments

     (1,269      (1,348      (84      (277

Curtailments

                               

Other Plan Changes

                             (1,958

Obligation, February 29 & February 28

   $ 15,964       $ 14,475       $ 1,958       $ 1,842   

Change in Plan Assets:

               

Plan Assets at Fair Value, March 1

   $ 8,305       $ 7,096               $   

Actual Return on Plan Assets

     324         1,236                   

Company Contributions

     1,157         1,321         84         277   

Benefit Payments

     (1,269      (1,348      (84      (277

Plan Assets at Fair Value, February 29 & February 28

   $ 8,517       $ 8,305       $       $   

Funded Status:

               

Funded Status

   $ (7,447    $ (6,170    $ (1,958    $ (1,842

 

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       Pension Benefits  
        2012      2011  

Plans with Accumulated Benefit Obligation in excess of Plan Assets

         

Accumulated Benefit Obligation

     $ 15,964       $ 14,475   

 

  

   Pension Benefits      Postretirement Benefits  
   2012      2011      2010      2012      2011      2010  

Components of Net Periodic Benefit Cost:

                     

Service Cost Benefits Earned During the Period

   $       $       $       $ 20       $ 63       $ 99   

Interest Cost on Benefit Obligation

     677         674         813         86         205         273   

Expected Return on Assets

     (577      (534      (388                        

Amortization of Prior Service Cost

                             (276      (64        

Amortization of Net (Gain) Loss

     431         389         481         188         218         186   

Settlements and Curtailment

                                               

Net Periodic Benefit Cost

   $ 531       $ 529       $ 906       $ 18       $ 422       $ 558   

 

      Pension Benefits      Postretirement Benefits  
   2012      2011      2012      2011  

Amounts Recognized in the Consolidated Balance Sheets

               

Prepaid Benefit Cost

   $       $       $       $   

Current Liability

     (780      (825      (126      (178

Non-Current Liability

     (6,667      (5,351      (1,833      (1,664

Net Amount Recognized

   $ (7,447    $ (6,176    $ (1,959    $ (1,842

 

      Pension Benefits      Postretirement Benefits  
   2012      2011      2012      2011  

Amounts Recognized in Accumulated Other Comprehensive Loss

               

Prior Service Cost (Credit)

   $       $       $ (1,617    $ (1,893

Net (Gain) or Loss

     7,119         5,217         1,875         1,968   

Net Amount Recognized

   $ 7,119       $ 5,217       $ 258       $ 75   

 

     Pension Benefits      Postretirement Benefits  
      2012      2011      2012      2011  

Other Changes in Plan Assets and Benefit Obligations Recognized in Other Comprehensive Income (Loss)

               

Net (Gain) or Loss

   $ 2,333       $ 416       $ 95       $ (1,154

Amortization of Prior Service Cost (Credit)

                     276         64   

Prior Service Cost (Credit)

                             (1,958

Adjustment for 2007 Plan Amendment

                             233   

Amortization of Net (Gain) or Loss

     (431      (389      (188      (218

Net Amount Recognized

   $ 1,902       $ 27       $ 183       $ (3,033

 

      2012      2011      2010  

Assumptions Used in Determining the Plans’ Funded Status:

          

Discount Rate(1)

     4.00%-4.23      5.22%-5.50      5.64%-5.94

Rate of Increase in Compensation Levels

     N/A         N/A         N/A   

 

      2012      2011      2010  

Assumptions Used in Determining Net Periodic Benefit Cost:

          

Discount Rate

     5.22%-5.50      5.64%-5.94      6.81%-6.86

Expected Long-Term Rate of Return on Assets

     7.00      7.50      7.50

 

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MSC continues to review its postretirement benefits, incorporating actual and anticipated benefit changes. In determining the present value of the accumulated postretirement benefit obligation and net cost, MSC assumed health care cost annual increases would decline from 7% to 5% per year over the life of the obligation. However, for some benefits no trend rate is applicable.

A 1% increase in assumed health care cost trend rates will raise the total of the service and interest cost components of net periodic postretirement benefit cost by less than $0.1 million, and the health care component of the accumulated postretirement benefit obligation by $0.1 million as of February 29, 2012. A 1% decrease in assumed health care cost trend rates will lower the total of the service and interest cost components of net periodic postretirement benefit cost by less than $0.1 million, and the health care component of the accumulated postretirement benefit obligation by $0.1 million as of February 29, 2012.

Plan Assets. The Company’s pension plan weighted-average asset allocations at February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011, by asset category, were as follows:

 

      2012      2011  

Equity Securities

     65      65

Debt Securities

     35      35

Total

     100      100

The investment objective of MSC’s pension plans is to meet the current and future defined benefit payments of participants and beneficiaries of its retirement plans. The plans will invest in funds with appropriate long-term goals and objectives. Individual funds included will seek to provide a long-term competitive rate of return, net of expenses, at appropriate risk levels—which over the long run is equal to or exceeds outlined benchmarks. To maximize diversification, the plans will invest in portfolios within four broad asset classes: bonds, large company stocks, small company domestic stocks and foreign stocks. To provide additional diversification and further reduce the volatility of the portfolio, the Plans will divide the large and small stock domestic portions between value and growth managers.

The approach used to determine the expected long-term rate of return on plan assets assumption is based on weighting historical market index returns for various asset classes in proportion to the assets held in the Material Sciences Corporation Master Trust (“Trust”). The Trust targets an asset allocation of approximately 63% in equity securities and 37% in fixed income securities.

The Company determines the fair value of plan assets using observable market data obtained from independent sources when available. The Company classifies its plan assets according to the fair value hierarchy:

 

   

Level 1—Quoted prices for identical instruments in active markets.

   

Level 2—Quoted prices for similar instruments in active markets; quoted prices for identical or similar instruments in markets that are not active; and model-derived valuations in which all significant inputs and significant value drivers are observable in active markets.

   

Level 3—Valuations derived from valuation techniques in which one or more significant inputs or significant value drivers are unobservable.

The table below summarizes the fair value measurements of the Trust’s assets at February 29, 2012, and February 28, 2011, by asset class (in thousands).

 

(in thousands)    Balance as of
February 29,
2012
    

Quoted Prices in
Active Markets for
Identical Assets

(Level 1)

    

Significant Other
Observable Inputs

(Level 2)

    

Significant
Unobservable
Inputs

(Level 3)

 

Cash and Cash Equivalents

   $ 52       $ 52       $       $   

Mutual Funds—Equity Securities

   $ 5,528       $ 5,528                   

Mutual Funds—Bonds

   $ 2,937       $ 2,937                   

Total

   $ 8,517       $ 8,517       $       $   

 

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(in thousands)    Balance as of
February 28,
2011
    

Quoted Prices in
Active Markets for
Identical Assets

(Level 1)

    

Significant Other
Observable Inputs

(Level 2)

    

Significant
Unobservable
Inputs

(Level 3)

 

Cash and Cash Equivalents

   $ 96       $ 96       $       $   

Mutual Funds—Equity Securities

   $ 5,411       $ 5,411                   

Mutual Funds—Bonds

   $ 2,798       $ 2,798                   

Total

   $ 8,305       $ 8,305       $       $   

The Company expects to contribute approximately $1.5 million to its qualified and non-qualified defined benefit pension plans in fiscal 2013. Benefits expected to be paid in each of the next five fiscal years, and in the aggregate for the five fiscal years after that, are shown in the table below (in thousands).

 

Expected Benefit Payments:        

2013

   $ 1,319   

2014

     1,198   

2015

     1,147   

2016

     953   

2017

     822   

2018 through 2022

     4,109   

Total

   $ 9,548   

MSC expects to contribute approximately $0.1 million to its postretirement benefit plans other than pensions in fiscal 2013. Benefits expected to be paid in each of the next five fiscal years, and in the aggregate for the five following fiscal years, are shown in the table below (in thousands).

 

Expected Benefit Payments:        

2013

   $ 126   

2014

     105   

2015

     99   

2016

     95   

2017

     97   

2018 through 2022

     555   

Total

   $ 1,077   

Note 7: Interest Income, Net

The table presented below analyzes the components of interest income, net.

 

(in thousands)    Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  

Interest Expense

   $ (113    $ (36    $ (45

Interest Income

     65         115         260   

Interest Income, Net

   $ (48    $ 79       $ 215   

Note 8: Income Taxes

Income (loss) from continuing operations before income taxes was as follows:

 

(in thousands)    Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  

United States

   $ 13,778       $ 12,900       $ (10,762

Foreign

     (227      (532      (943
     $ 13,551       $ 12,368       $ (11,705

 

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The components of the provision (benefit) for income taxes and reconciliation between the statutory rate for federal income taxes and the effective tax rate are summarized and presented below.

 

(in thousands)    Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  

Tax Provision (Benefit)

          

Current:

          

Federal

   $ (817    $ (32    $ (224

State

     853         341             136   

Foreign

     (128      15         3   
       (92          324         (85

Deferred:

          

Federal

     (9,530                

State

     (1,565                

Foreign

     (3,729                
       (14,824                

Tax Provision (Benefit)

   $ (14,916    $ 324       $ (85

 

(in thousands)    Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  

Tax Rate Reconciliation

          

Tax Provision (Benefit) at Federal Statutory Rate

   $ 4,743       $ 4,329       $ (4,097

State and Local Taxes, Net of Federal Tax Benefit

     525         521         (237

Effect of Changes in Tax Rates

     (76      (88        

Change in Unrecognized Tax Benefits

     (1,029      (96      90   

Valuation Allowance

     (18,807      (4,398      4,263   

Research and Development Credit

     (22      (79      (57

Manufacturing Deduction

     (440                

Other, Net

     190         135         (47

Tax Provision (Benefit) at Effective Income Tax Rate

   $ (14,916    $ 324       $ (85

Temporary differences that give rise to deferred tax assets and (liabilities) were as follows:

 

(in thousands)    Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011  

Reserves Not Deductible Until Paid

   $ 1,270       $ 1,927   

Employee Benefit Liabilities

     6,257         5,127   

Net Operating Loss and Tax Credit Carryforwards

     4,855         8,498   

Property and Equipment

     5,088         4,747   

Other

     434         456   

Total Gross Deferred Tax Asset

   $ 17,904       $ 20,755   

Valuation Allowance

     (567      (20,755

Total Net Deferred Tax Assets

   $ 17,337       $ 0   

The Company records deferred tax assets and liabilities using enacted tax rates on the differences between the book and tax basis of recorded assets and liabilities. Deferred tax assets are reduced by valuation allowances if, based on the consideration of all available evidence, it is more likely than not that some portion of the deferred tax assets will not be realized. During fiscal 2012, MSC reduced its valuation allowance by $4.0 million for reductions in the deferred tax assets during the year. After considering all available positive and negative evidence, the Company has reversed $14.8 million of the remaining valuation allowance on its U.S. and German deferred tax assets as of February 29, 2012, as the Company has determined that it is more likely than not that these benefits will be realized. The Company will maintain a valuation allowance of $0.6 million on its deferred tax asset for certain state net operating losses as of February 29, 2012, because it is not more likely than not that these benefits will be realized.

As of February 29, 2012, deferred tax assets for federal, state and foreign net operating losses and tax credit carry forwards of $3.6 million were available with an unlimited expiration date, and the remaining $1.3 million (net of federal taxes) expires in varying amounts in fiscal years 2018 through 2032.

There are inherent uncertainties related to the interpretation of tax laws in the jurisdictions in which the Company transacts business. In evaluating its various tax filing positions, the Company records tax benefits only if management determines that they are more likely than not to be sustained. Adjustments

 

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are made to the Company’s liability for unrecognized tax benefits in the period in which an issue is settled with the respective tax authorities, the statute of limitations expires or when new information becomes available. Adjustments to the amounts accrued may increase or decrease tax expense in any period. A reconciliation of the beginning and ending balances of the total amounts of gross unrecognized tax benefits is as follows (in millions):

 

      Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  

Gross unrecognized tax benefits at beginning of year

   $ 2.2       $ 2.5       $ 3.1   

Decreases in tax positions for prior years

     (0.1      (0.2      (0.6

Lapse in statute of limitations

     (1.0      (0.1        

Gross unrecognized tax benefits at end of year

   $ 1.1       $ 2.2       $ 2.5   

Amounts accrued for tax liabilities due to the potential change in judgments and estimates are $1.1 million at February 29, 2012. The total amounts of unrecognized tax benefits that, if recognized, would affect the effective tax rate were $0.9 million at February 29, 2012, $1.4 million at February 28, 2011, and $1.5 million at February 28, 2010.

The Company anticipates that it is reasonably possible that the total amount of unrecognized tax benefits of $1.1 million will significantly change during the next 12 months. The estimated range is a decrease of zero to $0.5 million. The period open for tax examinations varies depending on the tax jurisdiction. The Company is open to examination by the Internal Revenue Service for fiscal years 2005 through 2011. MSC is currently under audit in the U.S. for fiscal years 2010 and 2011. The resolution of the U.S. tax audit is not expected to materially affect the results of operations, financial position or cash flows. The Company completed an audit in Germany for fiscal years 2004 through 2007.

The Company classifies interest expense and any penalties related to income tax uncertainties as a component of income tax expense. The Company recorded negligible interest and penalties in the fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010 Consolidated Statement of Operations, respectively. The total accrued interest expense related to tax uncertainties recognized in the Consolidated Balance Sheets was $0.3 million at February 29, 2012, and $0.3 million at February 28, 2011.

Note 9: Significant Customers and Export Sales

Due to the concentration in the automotive industry, sales to individual automotive customers—including indirect sales—are significant. The following table shows direct sales to our significant customers that represented 10% or more of consolidated net sales for any of fiscal 2012, 2011 or 2010.

 

      % of Consolidated Net Sales  
Customer    Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  

U.S. Steel

     22      15      7

Chrysler LLC

     17      17      11

Ford Motor Company

     12      18      21

General Motors Corporation

     1      3      10

The following table shows gross accounts receivable from these significant customers as a percentage of total consolidated gross accounts receivable as of February 29, 2012 and February 28, 2011.

 

      % of Consolidated Gross Accounts Receivable  
Customer    February 29, 2012      February 28, 2011  

Chrysler LLC

     18      14

Ford Motor Company

     15      18

U.S. Steel

     12      24

General Motors Corporation

     1      1

For certain automotive customers, we may purchase unprocessed steel and then sell the finished, coated or laminated steel back to the same customer. Thus, for those companies, we may carry significant accounts payable balances.

 

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MSC’s domestic and foreign net sales are presented in the chart below. Sales to customers in any one foreign country did not comprise greater than 10% of consolidated net sales for any period presented.

 

Net Sales (in thousands)    Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  

Domestic

   $ 121,684       $ 125,179       $ 126,988   

Foreign

     15,050         12,445         10,832   

Total

   $ 136,734       $ 137,624       $ 137,820   

Domestic net sales included sales originated by our domestic subsidiaries and shipped to customers located in Asia of $0.4 million, $3.5 million and $2.0 million for the three years ended February 28 or 29, 2012, 2011 and 2010, respectively.

Note 10: Equity and Compensation Plans

The Company has one active equity award plan, the 1992 Plan, and one inactive equity award plan, the 2001 Directors Plan.

There are 3,262,500 shares authorized under the 1992 Plan to provide stock options and restricted stock under various programs. Non-qualified stock options generally vest over three years from the date of grant and expire between five and 10 years from the date of grant. Under the 1992 Plan, restricted stock and cash awards generally vest over three to five years from the date of grant. Some of these awards require a cash contribution from the employee. Shares of restricted stock are awarded in the name of the employee, who has all the rights of a shareowner, subject to certain restrictions or forfeitures. Restricted stock and cash awards have been issued with restrictions based upon time, Company earnings performance, or a combination of both.

There were 150,000 shares authorized under the 2001 Directors Plan. This plan consisted of grants that provide for all or a portion of each non-employee director’s annual retainer. The 2001 Directors Plan expired on February 29, 2004 and no additional grants will be made under the plan. As of February 29, 2012, options for 18,087 shares were outstanding and exercisable under the 2001 Directors Plan.

The Company recorded $0.3 million, $0.2 million and $0.1 million of compensation expense, net of applicable taxes, related to stock options for each year in fiscal 2012, 2011 and 2010 Consolidated Statement of Operations.

Stock Option Activity

The Company granted 200,000 stock options during fiscal 2012. The weighted average Black-Scholes value of each option granted was $4.13. The Company granted 200,000 stock options during fiscal 2011. The weighted average Black-Scholes value of each option granted was $0.93. MSC did not grant stock options during fiscal 2010. 22,304 options were exercised during fiscal 2012. As of February 29, 2012, there was $0.7 million of total gross compensation expense related to unvested stock option grants which is expected to be recognized ratably over a period ending in the first quarter of fiscal 2015.

The following tables summarize stock option activity for fiscal year 2012:

 

     Options Outstanding  
Stock Option Activity    Directors      Key
Employees
     Weighted
Average
Exercise Price
     Aggregate
Intrinsic
Value (in $000’s)
 

Outstanding as of February 28, 2011

     25,958         422,443       $ 6.50       $ 1,064   

Granted

             200,000         7.50      

Exercised

             (22,304      4.64      

Canceled/Forfeited

     (7,871      (112,001    $ 11.32            

Outstanding as of February 29, 2012

     18,087         488,138       $ 5.84       $ 1,472   

Exercisable as of February 29, 2012

     18,087         113,138       $ 8.42      

Vested or Expected to Vest as of February 29, 2012

     18,087         488,138       $ 5.84       $ 1,472   

The total intrinsic value of options exercised in fiscal 2012 was $0.1 million; in fiscal 2011 and 2010, it was zero.

 

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The Company has elected to use the Black-Scholes option pricing model and straight-line amortization of compensation expense over the requisite service period of the grant. MSC will reconsider use of this pricing model if additional information becomes available in the future that indicates another model would be more appropriate, or if grants in future periods have characteristics that cannot be reasonably estimated using this model. The following weighted average assumptions were used for the option grants in fiscal 2012 and 2011:

 

      2012      2011  

Dividend Yield

     0.0      0.0

Risk-Free Interest Rate

     2.5      2.7

Expected Volatility

     58.8      42.8

Expected Life (in Years)

     6.5         6.3   

MSC has not paid dividends in the past. As such, the Company uses a dividend yield percentage of zero. It uses a risk-free interest rate consistent with the yield available on a U.S. Treasury Note with a term equal to the expected term of the underlying grant. The expected volatility was estimated based upon the historical volatility of the Company’s share price. The expected life was an average of the initial vesting period and the original contractual term, as the Company does not have sufficient historical exercise data to otherwise estimate the expected life. The following table shows stock options outstanding and stock options exercisable at February 29, 2012:

 

     Options Outstanding
as of February 29, 2012
     Exercisable Options
as of February 29, 2012
 
Range of Exercise Prices    Shares      Weighted
Average
Remaining
Life (Years)
     Weighted
Average
Exercise Price
     Aggregate
Intrinsic
Value
(000s)
     Shares      Weighted
Average
Exercise Price
     Aggregate
Intrinsic
Value
(000s)
 

$  2.00  -  $  5.00

     175,000         5.0       $ 2.00                  $ 0.00      

$  5.01  -  $  8.00

     313,138         6.0       $ 7.68            113,138       $ 8.00      

$  8.01  -  $11.00

     8,461         0.3       $ 9.46            8,461       $ 9.46      

$11.01  -  $14.05

     9,626         1.1       $ 12.47                  9,626       $ 12.47            

$  2.00  -  $14.05

     506,225         5.5       $ 5.84       $ 1,472         131,225       $ 8.42       $ 75   

Restricted Stock Activity

The following table summarizes restricted stock transactions for fiscal 2011 and 2012:

 

Unvested as of February 28, 2010

       

Granted

     30,000   

Vested

       

Canceled

       

Unvested as of February 28, 2011

     30,000   

Granted

       

Vested

       

Canceled

       

Unvested as of February 29, 2012

     30,000   

MSC made two grants of 10,000 shares of restricted stock during the first quarter of fiscal 2011 and one grant of 10,000 shares during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011. The market price on the grant dates was $ 1.95, $3.22 and $6.77, respectively. The stock is subject to restrictions, including a restriction on selling or transferring the stock for a period of three years. The Company did not grant any shares of restricted stock during fiscal 2012.

Employee Stock Purchase Plan

MSC has an Employee Stock Purchase Plan that permits eligible employees to buy shares of common stock on the last day of two six-month purchase periods (February 28 or 29 and August 31 of each year) at 85% of the fair market value of the stock on these measurement dates. Shares of common stock sold

 

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to employees under this plan were 4,787 in fiscal 2012, 4,096 in fiscal 2011, and 2,432 in fiscal 2010. The amount the Company recorded as compensation expense related to this plan was not significant in any period presented.

Treasury Stock

Our Board of Directors authorized the repurchase of shares of the Company’s common stock as follows:

   

On January 7, 2008, 1,000,000 shares

   

On January 28, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

   

On May 27, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

   

On September 14, 2011, 1,000,000 shares

The shares may be repurchased from time-to-time on the open market, subject to market conditions and other factors, and generally will be funded with internally generated cash. The Company repurchased 98,316 shares under the January 2008 authorization (completing that authorization), 1,000,000 shares under the January 2011 authorization (completing that authorization), 1,000,000 shares under the May 2011 authorization (completing that authorization) and 352,136 shares under the September 2011 authorization during the twelve months ended February 29, 2012. At February 29, 2012, there were 647,864 shares available for purchase under the September 2011 authorization.

The following table provides information about Company purchases of common stock during the last three fiscal years (in thousands).

 

Period    Total Number
of Shares
Purchased
     Total Cost      Total Number of
Shares
Purchased as
Part of a Written
Trading Plan(1)
     Maximum
Number of
Shares that
May Yet Be
Purchased
 

March 1, 2009 – February 28, 2010

     703       $ 628         703         114   

March 1, 2010 – February 28, 2011

     16         111         16         1,098   

March 1, 2011 – February 29, 2012

     2,450         17,538         2,450         648   

Total

     3,169       $ 18,277         3,169            
(1) On December 4, 2008, MSC entered into a written trading plan to purchase up to 868,971 shares under Rule 10b5-1 as part of the existing share repurchase program. The December 10b5-1 trading plan expired on December 31, 2009, when all of the shares in the January 2008 authorization had been purchased. On February 25, 2011, the Company entered into a written trading plan under Rule 10b5-1 as part of the existing share repurchase program. The plan expired on May 26, 2011, when all of the shares in the January 2011 authorization had been purchased. On May 27, 2011, the Company entered into a written trading plan to purchase up to 1,000,000 shares under Rule 10b5-1 of the Exchange Act as part of the existing share repurchase program. The plan commenced on June 1, 2011, and expired on September 22, 2011, when 1,000,000 shares had been repurchased. On October 10, 2011, MSC entered into a new written trading plan to purchase up to 1,000,000 shares under Rule 10b5-1. As of February 29, 2012, 352,136 shares had been purchased under this trading plan.

Note 11: Business Segments

MSC operates in one segment based on how the Chief Operating Decision Maker views its business for evaluating performance and making operating decisions. The Company provides material-based solutions for acoustical and coated applications. The acoustical material-based solutions include multilayer composites consisting of metals, polymers, rubber and other coated materials used to manage noise and vibration. The coated metal material-based solutions include painted, electrogalvanized (“EG”), rubber and film protective, decorative and functional coatings applied to coiled metal of various widths and thicknesses. MSC’s material-based solutions are designed to meet specific customer requirements for the automotive, appliance, building products, lighting and electronics markets. The Company uses a significant level of shared assets and personnel across each of its product categories. It is common for a single customer to purchase products from several different product categories.

Each of our domestic facilities houses one or more principal production lines. These lines are used to transform the coils of metal into materials for our customers in a continuous process. The process varies somewhat, depending on the application and what materials are to be bonded to the metal coil. However, the core production line equipment does not change markedly. The products are differentiated

 

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by the type of material bonded to the metal and method used to bond them. Various coatings and/or films are applied by running the uncoiled metal ribbon through a paint bath and baking it onto the metal in high temperature ovens. Our proprietary Quiet Steel is produced by bonding two metal coils together with highly engineered viscoelastic core materials. Zinc and zinc-nickel corrosion protections are applied by running the steel through electrolyte baths and galvanizing the material to the metal with electricity. This galvanization process is only performed at our Walbridge, Ohio facility.

We use a significant level of shared assets, and share resources for sales, general and administrative expense, and management across each of our product categories. It is common for a single customer to purchase products from several different product categories as well as from different plants. Capital projects—whether for cost savings or generating incremental revenue—are evaluated individually based on estimated economic returns (e.g., net present value, return on investment), not based on related product line or geographic location. We use a centralized functional management structure, and share administration and production resources, to deliver individual products that, together, provide solutions to our customers.

Net sales by product category, net of intercompany activity, were as follows:

 

     Fiscal 2012      Fiscal 2011      Fiscal 2010  
Net Sales ($ in millions)    $      %      $      %      $      %  

Acoustical

   $ 68.3         50       $ 73.1         53       $ 66.9         49   

Coated

     68.4         50         64.5         47         70.9         51   

Total Net Sales

   $ 136.7         100       $ 137.6         100       $ 137.8         100   

Note 12: Earnings Per Share

Below is the computation of basic and diluted earnings per share for the fiscal years ended February 28 or 29, 2012, 2011 and 2010.

 

(in thousands except per share amounts)    2012      2011      2010  

Net Income (Loss)

   $ 28,467       $ 12,044       $ (11,620

Weighted Average Number of Common Shares Outstanding

          

Used for Basic Net Loss Per Share

     11,350         12,906         13,049   

Dilutive Stock Options

     91         51           

Dilutive Restricted Stock

                       

Weighted Average Number of Common Shares Outstanding Plus Dilutive Shares

     11,441         12,957         13,049   

Basic Net Income (Loss) Per Share:

                          

Basic Net Income (Loss) Per Share

   $ 2.51       $ 0.93       $ (0.89

Diluted Net Income (Loss) Per Share:

                          

Diluted Net Income (Loss) Per Share

   $ 2.49       $ 0.93       $ (0.89

Options to purchase 318,179 shares of common stock at a price range of $8.00-$14.05 per share were outstanding at the end of fiscal 2012 but were not included in the computation of diluted earnings per share because the options’ exercise price was greater than the average market price of the common shares.

 

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Note 13: Selected Quarterly Results of Operations (Unaudited)

The table presented below is a summary of quarterly data for the years ended February 29, 2012 and February 28, 2011.

 

(in thousands except per share amounts) 2012    First
Quarter
     Second
Quarter
     Third
Quarter
     Fourth
Quarter
     Full Fiscal
Year
 

Net Sales

   $ 36,036       $ 34,417       $ 34,009       $ 32,272       $ 136,734   

Gross Profit

     9,522         7,651         9,307         7,188         33,668   

Income From Operations(1)

     3,972         2,580         3,693         1,723         11,968   

Total Other Income, Net

     447         436         461         239         1,583   

Net Income

   $ 4,157       $ 3,021       $ 3,726       $ 17,563       $ 28,467   

Basic Net Income Per Share(3)

   $ 0.33       $ 0.26       $ 0.35       $ 1.65       $ 2.51   

Diluted Net Income Per Share(3)

   $ 0.33       $ 0.26       $ 0.34       $ 1.67       $ 2.49   

2011

                                            

Net Sales

   $ 42,467       $ 33,121       $ 30,120       $ 31,916       $ 137,624   

Gross Profit

     9,483         6,589         6,785         8,825         31,682   

Income From Operations(2)

     4,059         3,533         1,198         1,870         10,660   

Total Other Income, Net

     250         390         438         630         1,708   

Net Income

   $ 4,007       $ 3,937       $ 1,709       $ 2,391       $ 12,044   

Basic Net Income Per Share(3)

   $ 0.31       $ 0.31       $ 0.13       $ 0.18       $ 0.93   

Diluted Net Income Per Share(3)

   $ 0.31       $ 0.30       $ 0.13       $ 0.18       $ 0.93   
(1) Income from operations in the second and fourth quarters of fiscal 2012 included charges of $0.3 million and $0.3 million related to employee termination benefit expenses as discussed in Note 14, “Restructuring.”
(2) Income from operations in the first quarter of fiscal 2011 included a charge of $1.1 million related to employee termination benefit expenses as discussed in Note 14, “Restructuring,” a charge of $3.7 million related to asset value impairment as discussed in Note 15, “Asset Impairment,” and a gain of $4.7 million related to the sale of the coil coating assets located in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, as discussed in Note 17, “Elk Grove Village Asset Sale.” Income from operations in the second quarter of fiscal 2011 included a gain of $1.9 million related to the sale of the Middletown assets held for sale as discussed in Note 16, “Middletown Asset Sale.” Income from operations in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011 included a charge of $0.2 million related to severance expenses as discussed in Note 14, “Restructuring.”
(3) The sum of the four quarters is not necessarily the same as the total for the year.

Note 14: Restructuring

In fiscal 2009, management executed restructuring plans that eliminated positions in both production and selling, general and administrative expenses (“SG&A”). The Company recognized approximately $2.5 million in employee termination benefit and related expenses in the U.S. and Europe in fiscal 2009. Of this expense, approximately $1.8 million was paid in fiscal 2009, and the remaining $0.7 million was paid in fiscal 2010.

In the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010, management executed restructuring plans that eliminated additional production and SG&A positions. The Company recognized approximately $1.6 million in employee termination benefit and related expenses, $1.5 million in the U.S. and $0.1 million in Europe. Of this expense, approximately $0.2 million was paid as of February 28, 2010; the remainder was paid by the end of fiscal 2011.

In the first quarter of fiscal 2011, MSC executed a restructuring plan in conjunction with the sale of certain coil-coating assets located in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. See Note 17, “Elk Grove Village Asset Sale,” for additional discussion. The plan included eliminating positions in production and SG&A departments. The Company recognized approximately $1.1 million in employee termination benefit and related expenses, all of which was paid by the end of fiscal 2011. During the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011, MSC recognized severance expense of $0.2 million, which was paid by the end of fiscal 2012.

In the second quarter of fiscal 2012, MSC incurred employee termination benefit expenses of $0.3 million for certain SG&A positions. In the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, MSC executed a restructuring plan that eliminated eight production and two SG&A positions in our German subsidiary. The Company recognized approximately $0.3 million in employee termination benefit and related expenses. Of these expenses related to fiscal 2012 terminations, $0.4 million was paid as of February 29, 2012; the remainder will be paid by the end of fiscal 2013.

 

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The restructuring reserve as of February 29, 2012, is presented in the table below, which includes the fiscal 2010, 2011 and 2012 restructuring activities. The reserve is included in accrued payroll related expenses on the Consolidated Balance Sheets.

 

(in thousands)    Severance      Other      Total  

Restructuring Reserve as of February 28, 2009

   $ 612       $ 66       $ 678   

Restructuring Reserve Recorded During Fiscal 2010

     1,639         0         1,639   

Cash Payments

     (827      (66      (893

Restructuring Reserve as of February 28, 2010

   $ 1,424       $ 0       $ 1,424   

Restructuring Reserve Recorded During Fiscal 2011

     1,324         0         1,324   

Cash Payments

     (2,546      0         (2,546

Restructuring Reserve as of February 28, 2011

   $ 202       $ 0       $ 202   

Restructuring Reserve Recorded During Fiscal 2012

     430         153         583   

Cash Payment

     (484      (66      (550

Restructuring Reserve as of February 29, 2012

   $ 148       $ 87       $ 235   

Note 15: Asset Impairment

During fiscal 2010, we performed an analysis comparing the carrying amount of our long-lived assets to projections of undiscounted cash flows. The analysis indicated our long-lived assets used in domestic and foreign production were not impaired, but certain R&D and corporate assets might be impaired. We engaged third-party valuation consultants to assist us in determining the fair value of these assets as of February 28, 2010. Based on the fair values we determined, the asset values were not impaired as of that date and no adjustment was required.

During the first quarter of fiscal 2011, in conjunction with the sale of a portion of our coil coating assets, we conducted an impairment analysis of the real estate and building improvement assets at our Plant #7 in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. These assets housed the coil coating assets that were sold. With the sale, the future cash flow generated by the building was substantially reduced. (See Note 17, “Elk Grove Village Asset Sale,” for further discussion.) We compared the projected undiscounted future cash flows of the real estate and building improvement assets to their carrying value and determined their value might be impaired. We requested a valuation from a commercial real estate firm. Based on that valuation, we determined the assets were impaired and recorded a $3.7 million write-down of the assets in the first quarter of fiscal 2011.

There were no impairments during fiscal 2012.

Note 16: Middletown Asset Sale

The Company closed its coil coating facility in Middletown, Ohio, in July 2004. In fiscal 2010, the Company recorded an asset impairment charge of $0.4 million to reflect a decline in the market value of the land and building assets. The carrying value of these assets prior to the sale was $2.9 million. On June 24, 2010, MSC sold the facility to NCI Group for $4.9 million. The Company recorded a gain on the sale of approximately $1.9 million (net of fees) in the second quarter of fiscal 2011.

Note 17: Elk Grove Village Asset Sale

On April 12, 2010, the Company sold a portion of its coil coating assets and associated business base to Roll Coater, Inc. (“Roll Coater”) for $10 million ($9.3 million after investment banking fees). Roll Coater purchased the coil coating machinery, related processing equipment, and corresponding customer base associated with MSC’s Plant #7 in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. Based on fiscal 2010 shipments, the associated business base included approximately $28.6 million in sales of general-line coil coated products. In addition, MSC and Roll Coater entered into a multi-year lease agreement to store the purchased equipment. The transaction did not include the sale of any real estate by MSC. The Company recorded a gain on the sale of approximately $4.7 million (net of $0.3 million of legal fees) in the first quarter of fiscal 2011. MSC also recorded $1.1 million of employee severance expense and $0.2 million of inventory write-off expenses in connection with the sale.

 

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Note 18: Plan to Sell Elk Grove Village Building

In April 2011, after receiving authority from the Board of Directors, management committed to a plan to sell the building located at 2200 East Pratt Boulevard in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. This building houses our corporate offices and housed our coil coating assets before they were sold in April 2010. Since the production portion of the building is idle, and we have sufficient office space in our Plant #2 building in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, to house our corporate offices, this building is no longer critical to our business. Given the current market for real estate, a sale of the building is unlikely in the near term. Also, the Company does not have any pressing cash needs that would force an early sale and management is committed to realizing an appropriate sales value for the property. Because of these factors, we have not reclassified the building as an asset held for sale; however, if circumstances change, we will reconsider the appropriate classification of the building.

Note 19: German Subsidy

In December 2006, our German subsidiary, MSC Europe GmbH, entered into a subsidy program with the State of Thüringen. The subsidy provided 335 thousand for investment in our Application Development Center in Eisenach, Germany, and required we increase our staff by five positions and maintain 45 total positions for a five year monitoring period, from February 2009 through February 2014. The monitoring period was subsequently extended to February 2017. Under the subsidy, if we did not maintain the specified staff levels during the monitoring period, we would be liable to pay back the subsidy, with interest. Because of the uncertainty of maintaining hiring levels, we have carried a liability on the German books in the amount of the subsidy.

As discussed in Note 14, “Restructuring,” in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012, MSC executed a restructuring plan that eliminated eight production and two SG&A positions in our German subsidiary. As a consequence of this reduction, we determined we would not be in compliance with the staff level requirements of the subsidy. We have entered into negotiations with the State of Thüringen to settle the subsidy, and have recorded an estimated 65 thousand in interest for the period we have held the subsidy. We have also reclassified the subsidy as a short term liability, as we expect to settle the subsidy in fiscal 2013. The total liability for the subsidy and interest was $527 thousand at February 29, 2012.

 

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ITEM 9. CHANGES IN AND DISAGREEMENTS WITH ACCOUNTANTS ON ACCOUNTING AND FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE

There were no changes in or disagreements on any matters of accounting principles or financial statement disclosure between the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm and the Company during the two most recent fiscal years or any subsequent interim period.

ITEM 9A. CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES

Disclosure Controls and Procedures. A review and evaluation was performed by the Company’s management, including the Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”) and Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”), of the effectiveness of the design and operation of the Company’s disclosure controls and procedures, as defined in Rules 13a-15(e) and 15d-15(e) of the Exchange Act.

Based upon that review and evaluation, the CEO and CFO have concluded that the Company’s disclosure controls and procedures were effective as of February 29, 2012.

(a) Management’s Report on Internal Control over Financial Reporting. Management is responsible for establishing and maintaining adequate “internal control over financial reporting,” as the term is defined in the Exchange Act Rules 13a-15(f) and 15d-15(f). There are inherent limitations to the effectiveness of any system of internal control over financial reporting, including the possibility of human error and the circumvention or overriding of the controls and procedures. Accordingly, even an effective system of internal control over financial reporting can only provide reasonable assurance with respect to financial statement preparation and presentation in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. Also, projections of any evaluation of effectiveness to future periods are subject to the risk that controls may become inadequate because of changes in conditions, or that the degree of compliance with the policies or procedures may deteriorate.

Management, with the participation of our CEO and CFO, conducted an assessment of the effectiveness of the Company’s internal control over financial reporting as of February 29, 2012, based on the framework published by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission, referred to as the Internal Control—Integrated Framework. The objective of this assessment is to determine whether MSC’s internal control over financial reporting was effective as of February 29, 2012. Based on managements’ assessment using the criteria in the Internal Control—Integrated Framework the Company’s internal control over financial reporting was effective on that date.

This annual report does not include an attestation report of MSC’s independent registered public accounting firm about internal control over financial reporting. Management’s report was not subject to attestation by the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm under rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission that permit the Company to provide only management’s report in this annual report.

(b) Changes in Internal Control over Financial Reporting. There have been no changes in the Company’s internal control over financial reporting identified in connection with the evaluation required by paragraph (d) of Exchange Act Rules 13a-15 or 15d-15 which occurred during the quarter ended February 29, 2012, that have materially affected, or are reasonably likely to materially affect, the Company’s internal control over financial reporting.

ITEM 9B. OTHER INFORMATION

None.

 

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PART III

ITEM 10. DIRECTORS, EXECUTIVE OFFICERS AND CORPORATE GOVERNANCE

The information required by this Item concerning executive officers is included in Part 1, Item 1 of this report under the heading “Executive Officers of the Registrant.”

Code of Ethics

We have adopted a code of ethics entitled Material Sciences Corporation Code of Business Ethics (“MSC Code of Ethics”) that applies to all of our employees, officers and directors, including our principal executive officer and principal financial and accounting officer. A copy of the MSC Code of Ethics is available on our Web site at www.matsci.com. Amendments to, or waivers from, certain provisions of the MSC Code of Ethics for executive officers and directors are disclosed on our Web site following the date of the amendment or waiver. A copy of the MSC Code of Ethics also may be requested, free of charge, by writing to us at 2200 East Pratt Boulevard, Elk Grove Village, Illinois 60007, Attn.: Corporate Secretary.

We also have adopted written charters for our Audit and Compensation, Organization and Corporate Governance Committees; and Corporate Governance Guidelines; all of which are posted on our Web site at www.matsci.com. Investors may request a free copy of the charters and guidelines from the address noted above.

Other information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information in the sections entitled “Election of Directors,” “Board of Directors and Corporate Governance” and “Section 16(a) Beneficial Ownership Reporting Compliance” in the proxy statement for the Annual Meeting of Shareowners on June  28, 2012 (“Proxy Statement”).

ITEM 11. EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION

The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information in the sections entitled “Executive Compensation Tables” in the Proxy Statement.

ITEM 12. SECURITY OWNERSHIP OF CERTAIN BENEFICIAL OWNERS AND MANAGEMENT AND RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS

The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information in the sections entitled “Stock Ownership” and “Equity Compensation Plan Information” in the Proxy Statement.

ITEM 13. CERTAIN RELATIONSHIPS AND RELATED TRANSACTIONS, AND DIRECTOR INDEPENDENCE

The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information in the subsection entitled “Transactions with Related Persons” and the section entitled “Board of Directors and Corporate Governance” in the Proxy Statement.

ITEM 14. PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES

The information required by this Item is incorporated by reference to the information in the section entitled “Ratification of Appointment of Deloitte & Touche LLP” in the Proxy Statement.

 

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PART IV

ITEM 15. EXHIBITS AND FINANCIAL STATEMENT SCHEDULES

1. Financial Statements and Schedule of the Company

  a) Financial Statements. The Company’s financial statements are filed as a part of this report.
  b) Supplemental Schedule. Schedule II, Reserve for Receivable Allowances and Inventory Reserves appears below. All other schedules have been omitted, since the required information is not significant, or included in the financial statements or the related notes or are not applicable.

SCHEDULE II

Material Sciences Corporation and Subsidiaries Reserve for Receivable Allowances and Inventory Reserves

(In thousands)

 

            Additions                
      Balance at
Beginning
of Year
     Charged to
Costs and
Expense
     Charged to
Other
Accounts
     Reclassifications
and Acquisitions
     Deductions
from
Reserve
     Balance at
End of
Year
 

Fiscal 2010

Receivable Allowances

   $ 2,965       $ 3,549       $       $       $ (5,798    $ 716   

Inventory Reserves

   $ 2,863       $ 5,368       $       $       $ (5,704    $ 2,527   

Fiscal 2011

Receivable Allowances

   $ 716       $ 1,328       $       $       $ (1,624    $ 420   

Inventory Reserves

   $ 2,527       $ 4,391       $       $       $ (5,262    $ 1,656   

Fiscal 2012

Receivable Allowances

   $ 420       $ 1,717       $       $       $ (1,441    $ 696   

Inventory Reserves

   $ 1,656       $ 4,710       $       $       $ (5,024    $ 1,342   

The activity in the receivable allowances account includes the Company’s bad debt, product claims and customer scrap allowance.

2. Exhibits

Reference is made to the Exhibit Index which begins on page 55.

 

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Signatures

Pursuant to the requirements of Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securitie