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By | Paul Kunert 29th May 2014 13:26

Accounts probe stings IT distie giant Tech Data on the bottom line

Box slinger keeps its head above the red line in Q1 2015

The residual effects of Tech Data's accountancy blunder have emerged in the distribution goliath's figures for the first quarter of its new fiscal year.

While the numbers published today show rising sales, profits – hit by a series of charges including a $12.2m cost related to the accounts cock-up – are well off the pace.

Tech Data, the world's second biggest wholesale slinger of IT boxes, said its group turnover for the three months to 30 April was up nine per cent year on year to $6.1bn – helped, we're told, by a foreign exchange rate tailwind.

Sales climbed ten per cent in EMEA on a constant currency to $4.3bn (up five per cent in Euros) and increased eight per cent in the Americas to $2.5bn.

"We are pleased to report a good start to fiscal year 2015," said CEO Bob Dutkowsky in a statement. "Our focus on execution, supported by an improved IT demand environment, resulted in record first-quarter sales."

The cost of those sales also hit new highs, up more than 9.4 per cent year on year to $6.392bn. Operating expenses rose 6.1 per cent to $303.8m including that aforementioned $12.2m restatement-related cost.

Operating profit for the quarter came in at $31.4m versus $36m the year before, and after interest expenses and tax, net income was left standing at $13.4m compared to $17.7m a year ago.

Dutkowsky talked up the non-GAAP earnings – profits without underlying costs – which he pointed out rose by almost double digits and represented some sales momentum on which to build.

Tech Data has completed its embarrassing number-crunching probe following revelations of accounting errors in the UK, and in two European and Latin American hubs.

Results for fiscal years 2011, 2012 and 2013 were restated, with sales for those periods some $1.59bn lighter and profit after tax reduced by $27m.

Staffers who were in the UK finance department at the time of the cock-up are being investigated by the Financial Reporting Council to ascertain if they need to be fined, struck off, or remain blameless. ®

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