Superior Group of Companies, Inc. (SGC) has announced its fourth-quarter and year-end operating results for 2020, reporting net sales up 34 percent for the quarter and 40 percent annually. The Seminole, Florida-headquartered company says that for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2020, net sales increased by $150 million to $526.7 million compared to $376.7 million in 2019.

SGC operates in the promotional products market through its subsidiaries, distributors BAMKO (PPAI 242148, D11), Tangerine Promotions, Ltd. (PPAI 439779, D1) and Public Identity, Inc. (PPAI 230372, D1). Its pre-tax income for 2020 was $51.5 million compared to $15.3 million in 2019. Net income for the fiscal year 2020 was $41 million, or $2.65 per diluted share, compared to $12.1 million, or $0.79 per diluted share in 2019.

Net sales for the fourth quarter were $145.4 million, up from 2019’s fourth-quarter sales of $108.4 million. Pre-tax income was $15.9 million compared to $4 million in the 2019 fourth quarter. Net income for the fourth quarter was $12.5 million, or $0.79 per diluted share, compared to $3 million, or $0.20 per diluted share, reported for the fourth quarter 2019.

“While the pandemic made 2020 very challenging, we are very proud and grateful that our teams in all segments responded so strategically and collaboratively to the adversity, which produced record-setting results for our shareholders,” says CEO Michael Benstock. “We continued to benefit from our successful pivot to supplying a wider array of personal protective equipment (PPE) during the fourth quarter. For the full year 2020, net sales of PPE were approximately $131.2 million as compared to $3.9 million in 2019. While the pivot to PPE was key to our growth in net sales and net income, it is important to note that we actually had organic growth in net sales in 2020 in all three of our business segments exclusive of the increased sales from PPE.”

Sales at BAMKO grew 53 percent for the quarter and 88 percent for the year, eclipsing $202 million. Speaking to PPB Newslink, Jake Himelstein, COO and CFO for BAMKO, says, “I think the story of BAMKO’s massive growth in 2020 can be attributed to a number of factors. Among them are foresight, a culture of entrepreneurship and an infrastructure that was designed to adapt to and capitalize on rapidly changing circumstances. If you go back to the beginning of 2020, you’ll see that BAMKO was one of the loudest and earliest voices in the industry ringing the alarm bells about what was headed our way with COVID-19. We didn’t just talk about it, we acted upon it, moving quickly to put our team in position to take advantage of the sales opportunities that would shortly follow. A culture of entrepreneurship that’s hard-wired into our DNA meant that when competitors got bogged down with the challenges that COVID presented, we were obsessively searching for the opportunities enmeshed in those challenges.”

Himelstein adds, “It is a cultural imperative at BAMKO that we move quickly, take calculated risks and provide our sales team with opportunities to grow regardless of the circumstances we found ourselves it. One of the major benefits we had going for us is the long-term approach we’ve taken to making capital investments in critical infrastructure like our technology, overseas sourcing capabilities and warehousing facilities. Having continually made substantial long-term investments in having superior technology, sourcing and warehousing paid off in a major way, giving our team the resources and capabilities to capitalize on the unique sales opportunities that 2020 presented.”

The group’s other business segments also ended 2020 on a high note. Sales at The Office Gurus, its remote staffing segment, returned to pre-pandemic growth levels in the fourth quarter with 31 percent and 18 percent growth for the quarter and year, respectively. Sales in the group’s uniform segment also grew 24 percent for the quarter and 21 percent for the year.

“Our pre-existing strategy of selling to a diverse range of customers with our redundant manufacturing strategy remains in place and bodes well for our future, especially as we continue to provide products and services to many essential businesses in all of our SGC segments,” says Benstock. “Both our uniform and promotional products segments finished the year with record year-end opportunity pipelines and backlogs. The Office Gurus segment continues to grow, including by leveraging its work-from-home solution to increase capacity. While we have no certainty as to how the pandemic will impact our customers in the future, we are fully prepared to meet the challenges that might face us. We have made the proper investments in our people, technology and product development, and we continue to do so at an accelerated pace when needed. While we are living in the most uncertain of times, we have met challenges throughout our 100 years with innovation and success. We will continue to do so going forward in a way that focuses on building long-term shareholder value.”

Benstock adds, “As a result of the cash flow generated from operating activities, we were able to reduce our outstanding debt by $31.6 million in 2020. This reduction has bolstered our ability to capitalize on opportunities as they arise, such as our recent acquisition of Gifts by Design during the first quarter of 2021. We expect that additional favorable acquisition opportunities will be available for us in the current environment.”