SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
☑ Annual report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020
☐ Transition report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
For the transition period from to
Commission File No. 001-12561
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
|(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)||(IRS Employer Identification No.)|
1 North Brentwood Boulevard
St. Louis, Missouri 63105
(Address of Principal Executive Offices and Zip Code)
(Registrant’s Telephone Number, Including Area Code)
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
|Title of each class||Trading Symbol|| ||Name of each exchange on which registered|
|Common Stock, $0.01 par value per share||BDC|| ||The New York Stock Exchange|
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 o No þ.
Indicate by check mark if the Registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes o No þ.
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 þ No o.
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate website, if any, every interactive data file required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (section 232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files). Yes þ No o.
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company, or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company,” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filer ☑ Accelerated filer ☐
Non-accelerated filer ☐ Smaller reporting company ☐
Emerging growth company ☐
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ☐
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management's assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 7262(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report. ☑
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act).
Yes ☐ No ☑.
At June 28, 2020, the aggregate market value of Common Stock of Belden Inc. held by non-affiliates was $1,314,089,562 based on the closing price ($29.88) of such stock on such date.
As of February 11, 2021, there were 44,657,019 shares of the registrant’s common stock outstanding.
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
The registrant intends to file a definitive proxy statement for its annual meeting of stockholders within 120 days of the end of the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020 (the “Proxy Statement”). Portions of such proxy statement are incorporated by reference into Part III.
Item 1. Business
Belden Inc. (the Company, us, we, or our) connects and protects the world with the industry’s most complete suite of end-to-end specialty networking solutions. Our comprehensive portfolio of solutions enables customers to transmit and secure data, sound, and video for mission critical applications across complex enterprise and industrial environments. Our business is organized around two global business platforms, Enterprise Solutions and Industrial Solutions, both of which provide the opportunity to drive future growth due to favorable secular trends. Each business platform represents a reportable segment. Financial information about our segments appears in Note 6 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
We sell our products to distributors, end-users, installers, and directly to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). Belden Inc. is a Delaware corporation incorporated in 1988, but the Company’s roots date back to its founding by Joseph Belden in 1902.
As used herein, unless an operating segment is identified or the context otherwise requires, “Belden,” the “Company”, and “we” refer to Belden Inc. and its subsidiaries as a whole.
Strategy and Business Model
In 2020, we executed our strategy around three transformative actions. First, we divested Grass Valley in order to simplify our portfolio and meet our strategic revenue growth goals. Next, we streamlined our cost structure by reducing Selling, General, and Administrative expenses by approximately $40 million in the year ended December 31, 2020, with an annualized impact of approximately $60 million. Finally, we initiated processes to divest up to approximately $200 million of low-margin cable product lines that do not meet our long-term revenue growth and profitability goals. After the completion of these strategic actions, our portfolio of businesses will be well positioned to meet our long-term goals and deliver shareholder value.
Our portfolio and strategic priorities align with attractive end markets with favorable secular trends. Within Industrial Solutions, the growing demand for automated production and the ever-increasing need for network security drive demand for our solutions. Enterprise Solutions benefits from increasing consumer demand for more internet bandwidth and faster speeds, investment in 5G technology, and trends requiring integrated networks in smart buildings. We are well positioned to benefit from these secular trends in the form of improved revenue growth and expanded Adjusted EBITDA margins in the future.
Our business model is designed to generate shareholder value:
•Operational Excellence—The core of our business model is operational excellence and the execution of our Belden Business System. The Belden Business System has three areas of focus. First, we demonstrate a commitment to Lean enterprise initiatives, which improve not only the quality and efficiency of the manufacturing environment, but our business processes on a company-wide basis. Second, we utilize our Market Delivery System (MDS), a go-to-market model that provides the foundation for organic growth. We believe that organic growth, resulting from both market growth and share capture, is essential to our success. Finally, our Talent Management System supports the development of our associates at all levels, which preserves the culture necessary to operate our business consistently and sustainably.
•Cash Generation—Our pursuit of operational excellence results in the generation of cash flow. We generated cash flows from operating activities of $173.4 million, $276.9 million, and $289.2 million in 2020, 2019, and 2018, respectively.
•Portfolio Improvement—We utilize the cash flow generated by our business to fuel our continued transformation and generate shareholder value. We continuously improve our portfolio to ensure we provide the most complete, end-to-end solutions to our customers. Our portfolio is designed with balance across end markets and geographies to ensure we can meet our goals in most economic environments. We have a disciplined acquisition cultivation, execution, and integration system that allows us to invest in outstanding companies that strengthen our capabilities and enhance our ability to serve our customers.
We operate our business under the two segments – Enterprise Solutions and Industrial Solutions. Effective January 1, 2020, we transferred our West Penn Wire business and multi-conductor product lines from the Enterprise Solutions segment to the Industrial Solutions segment as a result of a shift in responsibilities among the segments. We have recast the prior period segment information to conform to the change in the composition of reportable segments. A synopsis of the segments is included below:
The Enterprise Solutions (Enterprise) segment is a leading provider in network infrastructure solutions, as well as cabling and connectivity solutions for commercial audio/video and security applications. We serve customers in markets such as healthcare, education, financial, government, corporate enterprises and broadband service providers, as well as end-markets, including sport venues and academia. Enterprise product lines include copper cable and connectivity solutions, fiber cable and connectivity solutions, racks and enclosures, and secure, high performance signal extension and matrix switching systems. Our products are used in applications such as local area networks, data centers, access control, Fiber to the Home and building automation. Enterprise provides true end-to-end copper and fiber network systems to include cable, assemblies, interconnect panels, and enclosures. Our high-performance solutions support all networking protocols up to and including 100G+ Ethernet technologies. Enterprise’s innovative products can deliver data in addition to power over Ethernet, which meets the higher performance requirements driven by the increasing number of connections in smart buildings. Enterprise products also include intelligent power, cooling, and airflow management for mission-critical data center operations. The Enterprise product portfolio is designed to support Internet Protocol convergence, the increased use of wireless communications, and cloud-based data centers by our customers. Our systems are installed through a network of highly trained system integrators and are supplied through authorized distributors.
The Industrial Solutions (Industrial) segment is a leading provider of high performance networking and machine connectivity products. Industrial products include physical network and fieldbus infrastructure components and on-machine connectivity systems to meet end user and OEM needs. Products are designed to provide reliability and confidence of performance for a wide range of industrial automation applications. The products are used in markets that include discrete automation, process automation, energy and mass transit. Applications include network and fieldbus infrastructure; sensor and actuator connectivity; and power, control, and data transmission. Industrial products include solutions such as industrial Ethernet switches, network management software, routers, firewalls, gateways, input/output (I/O) connectors/systems, industrial Ethernet cables, optical fiber industrial Ethernet cables, Fieldbus cables, IP and networking cables, I/O modules, distribution boxes, and customer specific wiring solutions.
Our industrial cable products are used in discrete manufacturing and process operations involving the connection of computers, programmable controllers, robots, operator interfaces, motor drives, sensors, printers, and other devices. Many industrial environments, such as petrochemical and other harsh-environment operations, require cables with exterior armor or jacketing that can endure physical abuse and exposure to chemicals, extreme temperatures, and outside elements. Other applications require conductors, insulation, and jacketing materials that can withstand repeated flexing. In addition to cable product configurations for these applications, we supply heat-shrinkable tubing and wire management products to protect and organize wire and cable assemblies. Our industrial connector products are primarily used as sensor and actuator connections in factory automation supporting various fieldbus protocols as well as power connections in building automation. These products are used both as components of manufacturing equipment and in the installation and networking of such equipment.
Industrial Solutions products are sold directly to industrial equipment OEMs and through a network of industrial distributors, value-added resellers, and system integrators.
See Note 6 to the Consolidated Financial Statements for additional information regarding our segments.
A key part of our business strategy includes acquiring companies to support our growth and enhance our product portfolio. Our acquisition strategy is based upon targeting leading companies that offer innovative products and strong brands. We utilize a disciplined approach to acquisitions based on product and market opportunities. When we identify acquisition candidates, we conduct rigorous financial and cultural analyses to make certain that they meet both our strategic plan targets and our goal for return on invested capital of 13-15%.
We have completed a number of acquisitions in recent years as part of this strategy. Most recently, in January 2021, we acquired OTN Systems N.V. (OTN), a leading provider of automation networking infrastructure solutions - refer to Note 28, Subsequent Events, for further discussion. In December 2019, we acquired substantially all of the assets of Special Product Company (SPC), a leading designer, manufacturer, and seller of outdoor cabinet products for optical fiber cable installations. In April 2019, we acquired the FutureLink business from Suttle Inc. as well as Opterna International Corp. (Opterna), which designs and manufactures complementary fiber connectivity, cabinet, and enclosure products used in optical networks.The results of SPC, FutureLink, and Opterna have been included in our Consolidated Financial Statements as of their acquisition dates, and are reported within the Enterprise Solutions segment. In 2018, we acquired Net-Tech Technology, Inc. (NT2), an integrator of optical passive components and network optimization products used within broadband network applications where
optical backhaul is used. The results of NT2 have been included in our Consolidated Financial Statements from the acquisition date, and are reported within the Enterprise Solutions segment. For more information regarding these transactions, see Note 4 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
We sell to distributors, OEMs, installers, and end-users. On June 22, 2020, WESCO International, Inc (WESCO) acquired Anixter International, Inc. (Anixter), our largest distributor. References to "WESCO" in the remainder of this report will be inclusive of Anixter. For the year ended December 31, 2020, sales to WESCO represented approximately 15% of our consolidated revenues. No other customer accounted for more than 10% of our revenues in 2020.
We have supply agreements with distributors and OEM customers. In general, our customers are not contractually obligated to buy our products exclusively, in minimum amounts, or for a significant period of time. We believe that our relationships with our customers and distributors are good and that they are loyal to Belden products as a result of our reputation, the breadth of our product portfolio, the quality and performance characteristics of our products, and our customer service and technical support, among other reasons.
In addition to manufacturing facilities in the United States (U.S.), we have manufacturing and other operating facilities in Brazil, Canada, China, India, Mexico, and St. Kitts, as well as in various countries in Europe. During 2020, approximately 45% of Belden’s sales were to customers outside the U.S. Our primary channels to international markets include both distributors and direct sales to end users and OEMs.
Financial information for Belden by country is shown in Note 6 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
The markets in which we operate can be generally categorized as highly competitive with many players. In order to maximize our competitive advantages, we manage our product portfolio to capitalize on secular trends and high-growth applications in those markets. Based on available data for our served markets, we estimate that our market share across our segments is significant, ranging from approximately 5% – 20%. A substantial acquisition in one of our served markets would be necessary to meaningfully change our estimated market share percentage.
The principal competitive factors in all our product markets are technical features, quality, availability, price, customer support, and distribution coverage. The relative importance of each of these factors varies depending on the customer. Some products are manufactured to meet published industry specifications and are less differentiated on the basis of product characteristics. We believe that Belden stands out in many of our markets on the basis of the breadth of our product portfolio, the quality and performance characteristics of our products, our customer service, and our technical support.
Research and Development
We conduct research and development on an ongoing basis, including new and existing hardware and software product development, testing and analysis, and process and equipment development and testing. See the Consolidated Statements of Operations for amounts incurred for research and development. Many of the markets we serve are characterized by advances in information processing and communications capabilities, including advances driven by the expansion of digital technology, which require increased transmission speeds and greater bandwidth. Our markets are also subject to increasing requirements for mobility, information security, and transmission reliability. Some of our markets are using workflows and resources in public and private cloud and showing preference for software products delivered as services. We believe that our future success will depend in part upon our ability to enhance existing products and to develop, manufacture and deliver new products that meet or anticipate such changes in our served markets.
In our Enterprise Solutions segment, in order to support the demand for additional bandwidth and to improve service integrity, broadband service providers are investing in their networks to enhance delivery capabilities to customers for the foreseeable future. Additional bandwidth requirements resulting from increased traffic expose weak points in the network, which are often connectivity related, causing broadband service operators to improve and upgrade residential networks with higher performing connectivity products.
In our Industrial Solutions segment, there is a compelling need among global enterprises, service providers and government agencies to detect, prevent and respond to cyber security threats. This is a long-standing need within corporate networks, but we believe the rapid proliferation of new devices in the “internet of things” will continue to cause this need to broaden and accelerate. Additionally, cyber-attacks are moving beyond traditional targets into critical infrastructure, which will further amplify the importance of our work in network security. Furthermore, there is a growing trend toward adoption of Industrial Ethernet technology, bringing to the critical infrastructure the advantages of digital communication and the ability to network devices made by different manufacturers and integrate them with enterprise systems. While the adoption of this technology is at a more advanced stage in certain regions of the world, we believe that the trend will globalize. This trend will also lead to a rising need for wireless systems for some applications and for cybersecurity to protect this critical infrastructure. Part of our research and development is focused on creating scalable, efficient technologies to provide real-time instrumentation and analytics across entire networks. This includes delivering high-fidelity visibility and deep intelligence about networked systems, their vulnerabilities, and providing actionable information about how to effectively secure them. Additionally, we have highly-skilled and active research teams who analyze current and anticipated threats, and provide offerings to the market to enable customers to quickly detect and resolve cybersecurity threats.
Our research and development efforts are also focused on fiber optic technology, which presents a potential substitute for certain of the copper-based products that comprise a portion of our revenues. Fiber optic cables have certain advantages over copper-based cables in applications where large amounts of information must travel significant distances and where high levels of information security are required. While the cost to interface electronic and optical light signals and to terminate and connect optical fiber remains comparatively high, we expect that in future years the cost difference versus traditional copper networks will diminish. We sell fiber optic infrastructure, and many customers specify these products in combination with copper-based infrastructure. The final stage of most networks remains almost exclusively copper-based, and we expect that it will continue to be copper for the foreseeable future. However, if a significant decrease in the cost of fiber optic systems relative to the cost of copper-based systems were to occur, such systems could become superior on a price/performance basis to copper-based systems. Part of our research and development efforts focus on expanding our fiber-optic based product portfolio.
Patents and Trademarks
We have a policy of seeking patents when appropriate on inventions concerning new products, product improvements, and advances in equipment and processes as part of our ongoing research, development, and manufacturing activities. We own many patents and registered trademarks worldwide that are used by our operating segments, with pending applications for numerous others. We consider our patents and trademarks to be valuable assets. Our most prominent trademarks are: Belden®, Alpha Wire™, GarrettCom®, Hirschmann®, Lumberg Automation™, Mohawk®, Poliron™, PPC®, ProSoft Technology®, Thinklogical®, Tofino®, Tripwire® and West Penn Wire™.
The principal raw material used in many of our cable products is copper. Other materials we purchase in large quantities include fluorinated ethylene-propylene (FEP), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyethylene, aluminum-clad steel and copper-clad steel conductors, aluminum, brass, other metals, optical fiber, printed circuit boards, and electronic components. With respect to all major raw materials used by us, we generally have either alternative sources of supply or access to alternative materials. Supplies of these materials are generally adequate and are expected to remain so for the foreseeable future.
Over the past three years, the prices of metals, particularly copper, have been highly volatile. The chart below illustrates the high and low spot prices per pound of copper over the last three years.
|Copper spot prices per pound|
|$||3.63 ||$||2.98 ||$||3.29 |
|$||2.12 ||$||2.51 ||$||2.56 |
Prices for materials such as PVC and other plastics derived from petrochemical feedstocks have also fluctuated. Since Belden utilizes the first in, first out (FIFO) inventory costing methodology, the impact of copper and other raw material cost changes on our cost of goods sold is delayed by approximately two months based on our rate of inventory turnover.
While we generally are able to adjust our pricing for fluctuations in commodity prices, we can experience short-term favorable or unfavorable variances. When the cost of raw materials increases, we are generally able to recover these costs through higher pricing of our finished products. The majority of our products are sold through distribution, and we manage the pricing of these
products through published price lists, which we update from time to time, with new prices typically taking effect a few weeks after they are announced. Some OEM customer contracts have provisions for passing through raw material cost changes, generally with a lag of a few weeks to three months.
Our business is characterized generally by short-term order and shipment schedules. Our backlog consists of product orders for which we have received a customer purchase order or purchase commitment and which have not yet been shipped. Orders are generally subject to cancellation or rescheduling by the customer. As of December 31, 2020, our backlog of orders believed to be firm was $223.0 million. The majority of the backlog at December 31, 2020 is scheduled to ship in the first quarter of 2021.
We are subject to numerous federal, state, provincial, local, and foreign laws and regulations relating to the storage, handling, emission, and discharge of materials into the environment, including the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act; the Clean Water Act; the Clean Air Act; the Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act; the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act; and similar laws in the other countries in which we operate. While we believe that our existing environmental control procedures are adequate, we will continue to evaluate and update our procedures as needed to address new or changing aspects of environmental matters.
Human Capital Resources
As of December 31, 2020, we had approximately 6,200 and 200 full-time and contractor employees, respectively, worldwide, of which approximately 65%, 20% and 15% were in North and South America, EMEA, and APAC, respectively. Approximately 1,700 employees are covered by collective bargaining agreements at various locations around the world. We believe our relationship with our employees is generally positive, and we measure and monitor the workforce's sustainable engagement, among other metrics, to ensure this remains the case.
Our culture and principles enable us to attract, retain, motivate and develop our workforce as well as drive employee engagement. We believe an engaged workforce leads to a more innovative, productive and profitable company. Our employees around the world live our Belden Values every day and work to ensure that our products and services connect and protect our customers critical infrastructure. Reflective of our corporate value "We Invest in Talent," our employees are highly engaged, scoring 88% positive in our most recent employee survey. Furthermore, we were recognized by Great Place to Work in Germany, Brazil and India, where we were also recognized as a Great Place to Work for Women.
The ethnic and gender diversity of our senior leadership team has increased with new strategic hires from outside the Company alongside internal promotions. The number of women serving as independent directors on our board of directors has further increased to 33%. During 2020, we also appointed a new Director of Inclusive Culture and continue to partner with organizations as we look to identify further opportunities to improve diversity, inclusion and belonging across our company.
During 2020, we launched our Connect with Community program, which enables Belden employees to take a week’s paid time away from work to volunteer in their local communities. As a result, a broad range of communities around the world have benefited from the efforts of our team members who have worked with food banks, environmental organizations, education establishments and community development charities across the world. During the year ended December 31, 2020, we also introduced our voluntary flex-time program, which enables most of our employees outside of direct production to take time off to deal with personal and family matters, resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic or otherwise, and receive 25% of their pay during such period.
We continually evolve our Early Career Leadership program. This 3-year rotational program enables talented graduates to work around the world in challenging roles within their chosen business function and prepares them to be the leaders of the future. As of December 31, 2020, the Early Career Leadership program had an exceptional retention rate of 100% and comprised over 80 participants, of which 46% were female.
We file annual, quarterly, and current reports, proxy statements, and other information with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). These reports, proxy statements, and other information contain additional information about us. These electronic SEC filings are available on the SEC's web site at www.sec.gov.
Belden maintains an Internet web site at www.belden.com where our Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K, proxy statements, and all amendments to those reports and statements are available without charge, as soon as reasonably practicable following the time they are filed with or furnished to the SEC.
We will provide upon written request and without charge a printed copy of our Annual Report on Form 10-K. To obtain such a copy, please write to the Corporate Secretary, Belden Inc., 1 North Brentwood Boulevard, 15th Floor, St. Louis, MO 63105.
Information about our Executive Officers
The following table sets forth certain information with respect to the persons who were Belden executive officers as of February 15, 2021. All executive officers are elected to terms that expire at the organizational meeting of the Board of Directors following the Annual Meeting of Shareholders.
|John Stroup||54||Executive Chairman|
|Roel Vestjens||46||President and Chief Executive Officer|
|Brian Anderson||46||Senior Vice President, Legal, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary|
|Ashish Chand||46||Executive Vice President, Industrial Automation|
|Henk Derksen||52||Senior Vice President, Finance, and Chief Financial Officer|
|Dean McKenna||52||Senior Vice President, Human Resources|
|Anshu Mehrotra||50||Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing|
|Doug Zink||45||Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer|
John Stroup was appointed Executive Chairman of the Company on May 21, 2020. Prior to that, he served as President, Chief Executive Officer, and a member of the Board since October 2005. He was also elected as Chairman of the Board on November 30, 2016. From 2000 to October 2005, he was employed by Danaher Corporation, a manufacturer of professional instrumentation, industrial technologies, and tools and components. At Danaher, he initially served as Vice President, Business Development. He was promoted to President of a division of Danaher’s Motion Group and later to Group Executive of the Motion Group. Earlier, he was Vice President of Marketing and General Manager with Scientific Technologies Inc. He has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Northwestern University and an M.B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley Haas School of Business.
Roel Vestjens was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer on May 21, 2020. Prior to that, he was the Chief Operating Officer since July 2019; Executive Vice President, Industrial Solutions from February 2018 to July 2019; Executive Vice President, Industrial Solutions and Broadcast IT Solutions from January 2017 to February 2018; and the Executive Vice President, Broadcast Solutions from March 2014 to January 2017. Mr. Vestjens joined Belden in 2006 as Director of Marketing for the EMEA region. In April 2008, Mr. Vestjens was promoted to Director of Sales and Marketing for the Industrial Solutions business, and in January 2009, he was appointed General Manager of Belden’s Wire and Cable Systems business in EMEA. Mr. Vestjens relocated to Asia in November 2010, and became President of the APAC OEM business, followed by President of all APAC Operations in May 2012. Mr. Vestjens joined Belden from Royal Philips Electronics where he held various European sales and marketing positions. Mr. Vestjens holds a bachelor degree in Electrical Engineering and a Master of Science and Management degree from Nyenrode Business University in the Netherlands.
Brian Anderson has been Senior Vice President, Legal, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary since April 2015. Prior to that, he served as Corporate Attorney for the Company from May 2008 through March 2015. Prior to joining Belden, Mr. Anderson was in private practice at the law firm Lewis Rice. Mr. Anderson has a B.S.B. in Accounting and an M.B.A. from Eastern Illinois University and holds a J.D. from Washington University in St. Louis.
Ashish Chand was appointed Executive Vice President, Industrial Automation in July 2019. Prior to that, he served as Managing Director, Industrial Solutions, for the Company’s APAC division from August 2017 to June 2019. Mr. Chand joined the Company in 2002 and has assumed positions of increasing responsibility in sales and marketing, operations, business development and general management since that time. Prior to joining Belden, Mr. Chand had experience in the oil and gas and non-ferrous metals segments. Mr. Chand holds a doctoral degree in Business from the City University of Hong Kong, an M.B.A. from XLRI Jamshedpur, India and a B.A. from Loyola College Chennai, India.
Henk Derksen has been Senior Vice President, Finance, and Chief Financial Officer since January 2012. Prior to that, he served as Vice President, Corporate Finance from July 2011 to December 2011 and Treasurer and Vice President, Financial Planning and Analysis of the Company from January 2010 to July 2011. In August of 2003, he became Vice President, Finance for the Company’s EMEA division, after joining the Company at the end of 2000. Prior to joining the Company, he was Vice President and Controller of Plukon Poultry, a food processing company from 1998 to 2000, and has 5 years’ experience in public accounting with Price Waterhouse and Baker Tilly. Mr. Derksen has a M.A. in Accounting from the University of Arnhem in the Netherlands and holds a doctoral degree in Business Economics in addition to an Executive Master of Finance & Control from Tias Business School in the Netherlands.
Dean McKenna has been Senior Vice President, Human Resources since May 2015. Prior to joining Belden, he was Vice President of Human Resources for the international business of SC Johnson. Prior to SC Johnson, he worked in various senior international human resource, organizational development and talent positions at Ingredion, Akzo Nobel and ICI Group PLC. He received his degree in Strategic Human Resource Management at the Nottingham Business School in the United Kingdom.
Anshu Mehrotra was appointed Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing in January 2021. Prior to joining Belden, he was Group President for Welding at Illinois Tool Works (ITW), leading the global Industrial Welding platform. Prior to ITW, he has had a number of leadership roles in general management and sales at Ingersoll Rand, Allegion and Johnson Controls. He has a B.S. in Electronics Engineering from Delhi University, an M.S. in Industrial Engineering from Northern Illinois University and an M.B.A. from Northwestern University at Kellogg School of Management.
Doug Zink has been Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer since September 2013. Prior to that, he has served as the Company’s Vice President, Internal Audit; Corporate Controller; and Director of Financial Reporting, after joining Belden in May 2007. Prior to joining the Company, he was a Financial Reporting Manager at TLC Vision Corporation, an eye care service company, from 2004 to 2007, and has five years of experience in public accounting with KPMG LLP and Arthur Andersen LLP. He holds Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Accounting from Texas Christian University and is a Certified Public Accountant.
Cautionary Information Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
We make forward-looking statements in this Annual Report on Form 10-K, in other materials we file with the SEC or otherwise release to the public, and on our website. In addition, our senior management might make forward-looking statements orally to investors, analysts, the media, and others. Statements concerning our future operations, prospects, strategies, financial condition, future economic performance (including growth and earnings) and demand for our products and services, and other statements of our plans, beliefs, or expectations, including the statements contained in Item 7, “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” that are not historical facts, are forward-looking statements. In some cases these statements are identifiable through the use of words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “forecast,” “guide,” “expect,” “intend,” “plan,” “project,” “target,” “can,” “could,” “may,” “should,” “will,” “would,” and similar expressions. The forward-looking statements we make are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to various assumptions, risks, and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those suggested by these forward-looking statements. These factors include, among others, those set forth in the following section and in the other documents that we file with the SEC.
We expressly disclaim any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.
Item 1A. Risk Factors
Following is a discussion of some of the more significant risks that could materially impact our business. There may be additional risks that impact our business that we currently do not recognize as, or that are not currently, material to our business.
The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic materially affected how we and our customers operated our businesses in 2020, and the duration and extent to which this or future epidemics or pandemics will impact our future results of operations and overall financial performance remains uncertain.
In December 2019, a novel coronavirus disease (“COVID-19”) was first reported and on March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization characterized COVID-19 as a pandemic. The widespread health crisis is adversely affecting the broader economies, financial markets and overall demand environment for many of our products.
Our operations and the operations of our suppliers, channel partners and customers were disrupted to varying degrees by a range of external factors related to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of which are not within our control. Many governments imposed, and may yet impose, a wide range of restrictions on the physical movement of people in order to limit the spread of COVID-19. The COVID-19 pandemic has had, and likely will continue to have, an impact on the attendance and productivity of our employees, and those of our channel partners or customers, resulting in negative impacts to our results of operations and overall financial performance. Additionally, COVID-19 has resulted, and likely will continue to result, in delays in non-residential construction, non-crisis-related IT purchases and project completion schedules in general, all of which can negatively impact our results in both current and future periods.
The duration and extent of the impact from the COVID-19 pandemic or any future epidemic or pandemic depends on future developments that cannot be accurately predicted at this time, such as the severity and transmission rate of the virus, the extent and effectiveness of containment actions, the effects of measures enacted by policy makers and central banks around the globe, and the impact of these and other factors on our employees, customers, channel partners and suppliers. If we are not able to respond to and manage the impact of such events effectively, our business will be affected.
A challenging global economic environment or a downturn in the markets we serve could adversely affect our operating results and stock price in a material manner.
A challenging global economic environment could cause substantial reductions in our revenue and results of operations as a result of weaker demand by the end users of our products and price erosion. Price erosion may occur through competitors becoming more aggressive in pricing practices. A challenging global economy could also make it difficult for our customers, our vendors, and us to accurately forecast and plan future business activities. Our customers could also face issues gaining timely access to sufficient credit, which could have an adverse effect on our results if such events cause reductions in revenues, delays in collection, or write-offs of receivables. Further, the demand for many of our products is economically sensitive and will vary with general economic activity, trends in nonresidential construction, investment in manufacturing facilities and automation, demand for information technology equipment, and other economic factors.
Global economic uncertainty could result in a significant decline in the value of foreign currencies relative to the U.S. dollar, which could result in a significant adverse effect on our revenues and results of operations; could make it difficult for our customers and us to accurately forecast and plan future business activities; and could cause our customers to slow or reduce spending on our products and services. Economic uncertainty could also arise from fiscal policy changes in the countries in which we operate.
Changes in foreign currency rates and commodity prices can impact the buying power of our customers. For example, a strengthened U.S. dollar can result in relative price increases for our products for customers outside of the U.S., which can have a negative impact on our revenues and results of operations. Furthermore, customers’ ability to invest in capital expenditures, such as our products, can depend upon proceeds from commodities, such as oil and gas markets. A decline in energy prices, therefore, can have a negative impact on our revenues and results of operations.
Potential cyber security incidents could interfere with our business and operations.
Computer hacking, malware, phishing, and spamming attacks against online networking platforms have become more prevalent. Though it is difficult to determine what, if any, harm may directly result from any specific attack or interruption, such events could also be expensive to remedy, harm our reputation or brands, and/or lead users to lose trust and confidence in our business. We, and others on our behalf, also store “personally identifiable information” (“PII”) with respect to employees, vendors, customers, and others. While we have implemented safeguards to protect the privacy of this information, it is possible that hackers or others might obtain this information in the future, as occurred in November 2020. Based upon this occurrence or any future occurrence, in addition to having to take potentially costly remedial action, we may also be subject to fines, penalties, lawsuits, and reputational damage.
Furthermore, we rely on our information systems and those of third parties for storing proprietary company information about our products and intellectual property, as well as for processing customer orders, manufacturing and shipping products, billing our customers, tracking inventory, supporting accounting functions and financial statement preparation, paying our employees, and otherwise running our business. In addition, we may need to enhance our information systems to provide additional capabilities and functionality. The implementation of new information systems and enhancements is frequently disruptive to the underlying business of an enterprise. Any disruptions affecting our ability to accurately report our financial performance on a timely basis could adversely affect our business in a number of respects. If we are unable to successfully implement potential future information systems enhancements, our financial position, results of operations, and cash flows could be negatively impacted.
Changes in tax laws may adversely affect our financial position.
We are a U.S.-based multinational company subject to tax in multiple U.S. and foreign tax jurisdictions. Significant judgment is required in determining our global provision for income taxes, deferred tax assets or liabilities and in evaluating our tax positions on a worldwide basis. While we believe our tax positions are consistent with the tax laws in the jurisdictions in which we conduct our business, it is possible that these positions may be contested or overturned by jurisdictional tax authorities, which may have a significant impact on our global provision for income taxes.
Tax laws are dynamic and subject to change as new laws are passed and new interpretations of the law are issued or applied. The U.S. recently enacted significant tax reform, and certain provisions of the new law may adversely affect us. In addition, governmental tax authorities are increasingly scrutinizing the tax positions of companies. Many countries in the European Union, as well as a number of other countries and organizations such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, are actively considering changes to existing tax laws. If tax laws and related regulations change, our financial results could be materially impacted. Given the unpredictability of these possible changes and their potential interdependency, it is possible such changes could adversely impact our financial results.
We may experience significant variability in our quarterly and annual effective tax rate which would affect our reported net income.
We have a complex tax profile due to the global nature of our operations, which encompass multiple taxing jurisdictions. Variability in the mix and profitability of domestic and international activities, identification and resolution of various tax uncertainties, changes in tax laws and rates, and the extent to which we are able to realize net operating loss and other carryforwards included in deferred tax assets and avoid potential adverse outcomes included in deferred tax liabilities, among other matters, may significantly affect our effective income tax rate in the future.
Our effective income tax rate is the result of the income tax rates in the various countries in which we do business. Our mix of income and losses in these jurisdictions affects our effective tax rate. For example, relatively more income in higher tax rate jurisdictions would increase our effective tax rate and thus lower our net income. Similarly, if we generate losses in tax jurisdictions for which no benefits are available; our effective income tax rate will increase. Our effective income tax rate may also be impacted by the recognition of discrete income tax items, such as required adjustments to our liabilities for uncertain tax positions or our deferred tax asset valuation allowance. A significant increase in our effective income tax rate could have a material adverse impact on our earnings.
Changes in the price and availability of raw materials we use could be detrimental to our profitability.
Copper is a significant component of the cost of most of our cable products. Over the past few years, the prices of metals, particularly copper, have been volatile. Prices of other materials we use, such as polyvinylchloride (PVC) and other plastics derived from petrochemical feedstocks, have also been volatile. Generally, we have recovered much of the higher cost of raw materials through higher pricing of our finished products. The majority of our products are sold through distribution, and we manage the pricing of these products through published price lists which we update from time to time, with new prices typically taking effect a few weeks after they are announced. Some OEM contracts have provisions for passing through raw material cost changes, generally with a lag of a few weeks to three months. Especially during periods of inflation, if we are unable to raise prices timely and sufficiently to recover our material costs, our earnings could decline. If we raise our prices but competitors raise their prices less, we may lose sales, and our earnings could decline. If the price of copper were to decline, we may be compelled to reduce prices to remain competitive, which could have a negative effect on revenues. While we generally believe the supply of raw materials (copper, plastics, and other materials) is adequate, we have experienced instances of limited supply of certain raw materials, resulting in extended lead times and higher prices. If a supply interruption or shortage of materials were to occur (including due to labor or political disputes), this could have a negative effect on revenues and earnings.
Future operating results depend upon the Company’s ability to obtain components in sufficient quantities on commercially reasonable terms.
Because the Company currently obtains certain components from single or limited sources, the Company is subject to significant supply and pricing risks. Many components, including those that are available from multiple sources, are at times subject to industry-wide shortages that could materially adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and operating results. While the Company has entered into agreements for the supply of many components, there can be no assurance that the Company will be able to extend or renew these agreements on similar terms, or at all. Component suppliers may suffer from poor financial conditions, which can lead to business failure for the supplier or consolidation within a particular industry, further limiting the Company’s ability to obtain sufficient quantities of components on commercially reasonable terms. A regional health crises, like the Coronavirus, could lead to quarantines or labor shortages, thus impacting the output of key suppliers. If the Company’s supply of components for a new or existing product were delayed or constrained, or if an outsourcing partner delayed shipments of completed products to the Company, the Company’s financial condition and operating results could be materially adversely affected. The Company’s business and financial performance could also be materially adversely affected depending on the time required to obtain sufficient quantities from the original source, or to identify and obtain sufficient quantities from an alternative source.
The global markets in which we operate are highly competitive.
We face competition from other manufacturers for each of our global business platforms and in each of our geographic regions. These companies compete on technical features, quality, availability, price, customer support, and distribution coverage. Some multinational competitors have greater engineering, financial, manufacturing, and marketing resources than we have. Actions that may be taken by competitors, including pricing, business alliances, new product introductions, intellectual property advantages, market penetration, and other actions, could have a negative effect on our revenues and profitability. Moreover, some competitors that are highly leveraged both financially and operationally could become more aggressive in their pricing of products.
Our revenue for any particular period can be difficult to forecast.
Our revenue for any particular period can be difficult to forecast, especially in light of the challenging and inconsistent global macroeconomic environment and related market uncertainty. Our revenue may grow at a slower rate than in past periods or even decline on a year-over-year basis. Changes in market growth rates can have a significant effect on our operating results.
The timing of orders for customer projects can also have a significant effect on our operating results in the period in which the products are shipped and recognized as revenue. The timing of such projects is difficult to predict, and the timing of revenue recognition from such projects may affect period to period changes in revenue. As a result, our operating results could vary materially from quarter to quarter based on the receipt of such orders and their ultimate recognition as revenue. Similarly, we are often informed by our customers well in advance that such customer intends to place an order related to a specific project in a given quarter. Such a customer’s timeline for execution of the project, and the resulting purchase order, may be unexpectedly delayed to a future quarter, or cancelled. The frequency of such delays can be difficult to predict. As a result, it is difficult to precisely forecast revenue and operating results for future quarters.
In addition, our revenue can be difficult to forecast due to unexpected changes in the level of our products held as inventory by our channel partners and customers. Our channel partners and customers purchase and hold our products in their inventory in order to meet the service and on-time delivery requirements of their customers. As our channel partners and customers change the level of Belden products owned and held in their inventory, our revenue is impacted. As we are dependent upon our channel partners and customers to provide us with information regarding the amount of our products that they own and hold in their inventory, unexpected changes can occur and impact our revenue forecast.
The presence of substitute products in the marketplace may reduce demand for our products and negatively impact our business.
Fiber optic systems are increasingly substitutable for copper based cable systems. Customers may shift demand to fiber optic systems with greater capabilities than copper based cable systems, leading to a reduction in demand for copper based cable. We may not be able to offset the effects of a reduction in demand for our copper-based cable systems with an increase in demand for our existing fiber optic systems. Further, the supply chain in the fiber market is highly constrained, with a small number of vertically integrated firms controlling critical inputs and the related intellectual property. Similarly, in our non-cable businesses, customers could rapidly shift the methods by which they capture and transmit signals in ways that could lead to decreased demand for our current or future products. These factors, either together or in isolation, may negatively impact revenue and profitability.
The increased prevalence of cloud computing and other disruptive business models may negatively impact certain aspects of our business.
The nature in which many of our products are purchased or used is evolving with the increasing prevalence of cloud computing and other methods of off-premises computing and data storage. This may negatively impact one or more of our businesses in a number of ways, including:
•Consolidation of procurement power leading to the commoditization of IT products;
•Reduction in the demand for infrastructure products previously used to support on-site data centers;
•Lowering barriers to entry for certain markets, leading to new market entrants and enhanced competition; and
•Preferences for software as a service billing and pricing models may reduce demand for non-cloud “packaged” software.
Our future success depends in part on our ability to develop and introduce new products and respond to changes in customer preferences.
Our markets are characterized by the introduction of products with increasing technological capabilities. Our success depends in part on our ability to anticipate and offer products that appeal to the changing needs and preferences of our customers in the various markets we serve. Developing new products and adapting existing products to meet evolving customer expectations requires high levels of innovation, and the development process may be lengthy and costly. If we are not able to timely anticipate, identify, develop and market products that respond to rapidly changing customer preferences, demand for our products could decline.
The relative costs and merits of our solutions could change in the future as various competing technologies address the market opportunities. We believe that our future success will depend in part upon our ability to enhance existing products and to develop and manufacture new products that meet or anticipate technological changes, which will require continued investment in engineering, research and development, capital equipment, marketing, customer service, and technical support. We have long been successful in introducing successive generations of more capable products, but if we were to fail to keep pace with technology or with the products of competitors, we might lose market share and harm our reputation and position as a technology leader in our markets. See the discussion above in Part I, Item 1, under Research and Development.
The increased influence of chief information officers and similar high-level executives may negatively impact demand for our products.
As a result of the increasing interconnectivity of a wide variety of systems, chief information officers and similar executives are more heavily involved in operation areas that have not historically been associated with information technology. As a result, CIOs and IT departments are exercising influence over the procurement and purchasing process at the expense of engineers, plant managers and operation personnel that have historically driven demand for many of our products. When making purchasing decisions, CIO’s often value interoperability, standardization, cloud-readiness and security over domain expertise and niche application knowledge. As a result of the influences of CIOs and IT departments, we may face increased competition from IT-industry companies that have not traditionally had major presences in the markets in which we operate. Further, the variance in considerations that drive purchasing decisions between CIOs and those with niche application expertise may result in increased competition based on price and a reduction in demand for our products.
Alterations to our product mix and go-to-market strategies designed to respond to the changes in the marketplace presented by cloud computing may be disruptive to our business and lead to increase expenses, which may result in lower revenues and profitability. Further, if a competitor is able to more quickly or efficiently adapt, or if cloud computing results in significantly lower barriers to entry and new competitors enter our markets, demand for our products may be reduced.
We may be unable to achieve our goals related to growth.
In order to meet the goals in our strategic plan, we must execute our Market Delivery System ("MDS") and grow our business, both organically and through acquisitions. We may be unable to achieve our goals due to a failure to identify growth opportunities, such as trends and technological changes in our end markets. The enterprise and industrial end markets we serve may not experience the growth we expect. Further, those markets may be unable to sustain growth on a long-term basis, particularly in emerging markets. If we are unable to achieve our goals related to growth, it could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial position, and cash flows.
We may be unable to implement our strategic plan successfully.
Our strategic plan is designed to continually enhance shareholder value by improving revenues and profitability, reducing costs, and improving working capital management. To achieve these goals, our strategic priorities are reliant on our Belden Business System, which includes continuing deployment of our MDS to capture market share through end-user engagement, channel management, outbound marketing, and careful vertical market selection; improving our recruitment and development of talented associates; developing strong global business platforms; acquiring businesses that fit our strategic plan; and continuing to be a leading Lean company. We have a disciplined process for deploying this strategic plan through our associates. There is a risk that we may not be successful in developing or executing these measures to achieve the expected results for a variety of reasons, including market developments, economic conditions, shortcomings in establishing appropriate action plans, or challenges with executing multiple initiatives simultaneously. For example, our MDS initiative may not succeed or we may lose market share due to challenges in choosing the right products to market or the right customers for these products, integrating products of acquired companies into our sales and marketing strategy, or strategically bidding against OEM partners. We may fail to identify growth opportunities. We may not be able to acquire businesses that fit our strategic plan on acceptable business terms, and we may not achieve our other strategic priorities.
We may be unable to achieve our strategic priorities in emerging markets.
Emerging markets are a significant focus of our strategic plan. The developing nature of these markets presents a number of risks. We may be unable to attract, develop, and retain appropriate talent to manage our businesses in emerging markets. Deterioration of social, political, labor, or economic conditions in a specific country or region may adversely affect our operations or financial results. Emerging markets may not meet our growth expectations, and we may be unable to maintain such growth or to balance such growth with financial goals and compliance requirements. Among the risks in emerging market countries are bureaucratic intrusions and delays, contract compliance failures, engrained business partners that do not comply with local or U.S. law, such as the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, fluctuating currencies and interest rates, limitations on the amount and nature of investments, restrictions on permissible forms and structures of investment, unreliable legal and financial infrastructure, regime disruption and political unrest, uncontrolled inflation and commodity prices, fierce local competition by companies with better political connections, and corruption. In addition, the costs of compliance with local laws and regulations in emerging markets may negatively impact our competitive position as compared to locally owned manufacturers.
We must complete acquisitions and divestitures in order to achieve our strategic plan.
In order to meet the goals in our strategic plan, we must complete acquisitions and divestitures. The extent to which appropriate acquisitions are made will affect our overall growth, operating results, financial condition, and cash flows. Our ability to acquire businesses successfully will decline if we are unable to identify appropriate acquisition targets consistent with our strategic plan, the competition among potential buyers increases, the cost of acquiring suitable businesses becomes too expensive, or we lack sufficient sources of capital. As a result, we may be unable to make acquisitions or be forced to pay more or agree to less advantageous acquisition terms for the companies that we would like to acquire.
Additionally, our strategic plan includes the planned divestiture of certain low-margin cable businesses representing up to $200 million in annual revenues. The inability to find a suitable buyer(s) with acceptable terms could have an adverse effect on our operating results.
We may have difficulty integrating the operations of acquired businesses, which could negatively affect our results of operations and profitability.
We may have difficulty integrating acquired businesses and future acquisitions might not meet our performance expectations. Some of the integration challenges we might face include differences in corporate culture and management styles, additional or conflicting governmental regulations, compliance with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, financial reporting that is not in compliance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles, disparate company policies and practices, customer relationship issues, and retention of key personnel. In addition, management may be required to devote a considerable amount of time to the integration process, which could decrease the amount of time we have to manage the other businesses. We may not be able to integrate operations successfully or cost-effectively, which could have a negative impact on our results of operations or our profitability. The process of integrating operations could also cause some interruption of, or the loss of momentum in, the activities of acquired businesses.
Our results of operations are subject to foreign and domestic political, social, economic, and other uncertainties and are affected by changes in currency exchange rates.
In addition to manufacturing and other operating facilities in the U.S., we have manufacturing and other operating facilities in Brazil, Canada, China, India, Mexico, St. Kitts, and several European countries. We rely on suppliers in many countries, including China. Our foreign operations are subject to economic, social, and political risks inherent in maintaining operations abroad such as economic and political destabilization, land use risks, international conflicts, pandemics and other health-related crises, restrictive actions by foreign governments, and adverse foreign tax laws. In addition to economic and political risk, a risk associated with our European manufacturing operations is the higher relative expense and length of time required to adjust manufacturing employment capacity. We also face political risks in the U.S., including tax or regulatory risks or potential adverse impacts from legislative impasses over, or significant legislative, regulatory or executive changes in fiscal or monetary policy and other foreign and domestic government policies, including, but not limited to, trade policies and import/export policies.
Approximately 45% of our sales are outside the U.S. Other than the U.S. dollar, the principal currencies to which we are exposed through our manufacturing operations, sales, and related cash holdings are the euro, the Canadian dollar, the Hong Kong dollar, the Chinese yuan, the Mexican peso, the Australian dollar, the British pound, and the Brazilian real. Generally, we have revenues and costs in the same currency, thereby reducing our overall currency risk, although any realignment of our manufacturing capacity among our global facilities could alter this balance. When the U.S. dollar strengthens against other currencies, the results of our non-U.S. operations are translated at a lower exchange rate and thus into lower reported revenues and earnings.
Changes in global tariffs and trade agreements may have a negative impact on global economic conditions, markets and our business.
Like most multinational companies, we have supply chains and sales channels that extend beyond national borders. Purchasing and production decisions in some cases are largely influenced by the trade agreements and the tax and tariff structures in place. Disruption in those structures can create significant market uncertainty. While the impact of Brexit and the U.S. and Chinese tariff actions are not currently material to us, unanticipated complications in the free movement of goods in Europe, an escalation of tariff activity anywhere in the world or changes to existing free trade agreements could materially impact our financial results. In addition to the potential direct impacts of free trade restrictions, longer term macroeconomic consequences could result, including slower growth, inflation, higher interest rates and unfavorable impacts to currency exchange rates. Any of these factors could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.
Volatility of credit markets could adversely affect our business.
Uncertainty in U.S. and global financial and equity markets could make it more expensive for us to conduct our operations and more difficult for our customers to buy our products. Additionally, market volatility or uncertainty may cause us to be unable to pursue or complete acquisitions. Our ability to implement our business strategy and grow our business, particularly through acquisitions, may depend on our ability to raise capital by selling equity or debt securities or obtaining additional debt financing. Market conditions may prevent us from obtaining financing when we need it or on terms acceptable to us.
Actions of activists could cause us to incur substantial costs, divert management’s attention and resources, and have an adverse effect on our business.
From time to time, we may be subject to proposals by activists urging us to take certain actions. If activist activities ensue, our business could be adversely affected because responding and reacting to actions by activists can be costly and time-consuming, disrupt our operations and divert the attention of management and our employees. For example, we may be required to retain the services of various professionals to advise us on activist matters, including legal, financial and communications advisors, the costs of which may negatively impact our future financial results. In addition, perceived uncertainties as to our future direction, strategy or leadership created as a consequence of activist initiatives may result in the loss of potential business opportunities, harm our ability to attract new investors, customers, employees, and joint venture partners, and cause our stock price to experience periods of volatility.
Perceived failure of our signal transmission solutions to provide expected results may result in negative publicity and harm our business and operating results.
Our customers use our signal transmission solutions in a wide variety of IT systems and application environments in order to help reduce security vulnerabilities and demonstrate compliance. Despite our efforts to make clear in our marketing materials and customer agreements the capabilities and limitations of these products, some customers may incorrectly view the deployment of such products in their IT infrastructure as a guarantee that there will be no security incident or policy non-compliance event. As a result, the occurrence of a high profile security incident, or a failure by one of our customers to pass a regulatory compliance IT audit, could result in public and customer perception that our solutions are not effective and harm our business and operating results, even if the occurrence is unrelated to the use of such products or if the failure is the result of actions or inactions on the part of the customer.
Our use of open source software could negatively impact our ability to sell our products and may subject us to unanticipated obligations.
The products, services, or technologies we acquire, license, provide, or develop may incorporate or use open source software. We monitor and restrict our use of open source software in an effort to avoid unintended consequences, such as reciprocal license grants, patent retaliation clauses, and the requirement to license our products at no cost. Nevertheless, we may be subject to unanticipated obligations regarding our products which incorporate or use open source software.
Our revenue and profits would likely decline, at least temporarily, if we were to lose a key distributor.
We rely on several key distributors in marketing our products. Distributors purchase the products of our competitors along with our products. Our largest distributor, WESCO, accounted for approximately 15% of our revenue in 2020 and our top six distributors, including WESCO, accounted for a total of 26% of our revenue in 2020. If we were to lose one of these key distributors, our revenue and profits would likely decline, at least temporarily. Changes in the inventory levels of our products owned and held by our distributors can result in significant variability in our revenues. Further, certain distributors are allowed to return certain inventory in exchange for an order of equal or greater value. We have recorded reserves for the estimated impact of these inventory policies.
Consolidation of our distributors could adversely impact our revenues and earnings. It could also result in consolidation of distributor inventory, which would temporarily depress our revenues. We have also experienced financial failure of distributors from time to time, resulting in our inability to collect accounts receivable in full. A global economic downturn could cause financial difficulties (including bankruptcy) for our distributors and other customers, which would adversely affect our results of operations.
If we are unable to retain key employees, our business operations could be adversely affected.
The loss of any of key employees could have an adverse effect on us. We may not be able to find qualified replacements for these individuals and the integration of potential replacements may be disruptive to our business. More broadly, a key determinant of our success is our ability to attract, develop, and retain talented associates. While this is one of our strategic priorities, we may not be able to succeed in this regard.
We might have difficulty protecting our intellectual property from use by competitors, or competitors might accuse us of violating their intellectual property rights.
Disagreements about patents and other intellectual property rights occur in the markets we serve. Third parties have asserted and may in the future assert claims of infringement of intellectual property rights against us or against our customers or channel partners for which we may be liable. Furthermore, a successful claimant could secure a judgment that requires us to pay substantial damages or prevents us from distributing certain products or performing certain services. We may encounter difficulty enforcing our own intellectual property rights against third parties, which could result in price erosion or loss of market share.
We are subject to laws and regulations worldwide, changes to which could increase our costs and individually or in the aggregate adversely affect our business.
We are subject to laws and regulations affecting our domestic and international operations in a number of areas. These U.S. and foreign laws and regulations affect our activities including, but not limited to, in areas of labor, advertising, real estate, billing, e-commerce, promotions, quality of services, property ownership and infringement, tax, import and export requirements, anti-corruption, foreign exchange controls and cash repatriation restrictions, data privacy requirements, anti-competition, environmental, health and safety.
Compliance with these laws, regulations and similar requirements may be onerous and expensive, and they may be inconsistent from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, further increasing the cost of compliance and doing business. Any such costs, which may rise in the future as a result of changes in these laws and regulations or in their interpretation, could individually or in the aggregate make our products and services less attractive to our customers, delay the introduction of new products in one or more regions, or cause us to change or limit our business practices. We have implemented policies and procedures designed to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations, but there can be no assurance that our employees, contractors, or agents will not violate such laws and regulations or our policies and procedures.
Specifically with respect to data privacy, new data protection regulations have been adopted or are being considered for most of the developed world. Most notable are the European Commission’s adoption of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which became effective in May 2018 and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which became law on January 1, 2020. The GDPR and CCPA include operational requirements for companies that receive or process personal data of residents of their respective jurisdictions and include significant penalties for non-compliance. In addition, some countries are considering or have passed legislation implementing data protection requirements or requiring local storage and processing of data or similar requirements that could increase the cost and complexity of delivering our services.
If our goodwill or other intangible assets become impaired, we would be required to recognize charges that would reduce our income.
Under accounting principles generally accepted in the U.S., goodwill and certain other intangible assets are not amortized but must be reviewed for possible impairment annually or more often in certain circumstances if events indicate that the asset values may not be recoverable. We have incurred significant charges for the impairment of goodwill and other intangible assets in the past, and we may be required to do so again in future periods if the underlying value of our business declines. Such a charge would reduce our income without any change to our underlying cash flows.
Some of our employees are members of collective bargaining groups, and we might be subject to labor actions that would interrupt our business.
Some of our employees, primarily outside the U.S., are members of collective bargaining groups. We believe that our relations with employees are generally good. However, if there were a dispute with one of these bargaining groups, the affected operations could be interrupted, resulting in lost revenues, lost profit contribution, and customer dissatisfaction.
Item 1B. Unresolved Staff Comments
Item 2. Properties
Belden owns and leases manufacturing, warehousing, sales, and administrative space in locations around the world. We also have a corporate office that we lease in St. Louis, Missouri. The leases are of varying terms, expiring from 2021 through 2035.
The table below summarizes the geographic locations of our manufacturing and other operating facilities utilized by our segments as of December 31, 2020.
|Brazil||— ||1 ||— ||1 |
|Canada||— ||1 ||— ||1 |
|China||2 ||— ||1 ||3 |
|Czech Republic||— ||1 ||— ||1 |
|Denmark||1 ||— ||— ||1 |
|Germany||1 ||1 ||— ||2 |
|Hungary||— ||— ||1 ||1 |
|India||1 ||— ||1 ||2 |
|Italy||— ||— ||1 ||1 |
|Mexico||— ||— ||3 ||3 |
|Netherlands||— ||— ||1 ||1 |
|St. Kitts||1 ||— ||— ||1 |
|United Kingdom||1 ||— ||— ||1 |
|United States||4 ||3 ||1 ||8 |
|Total||11 ||7 ||9 ||27 |
In addition to the manufacturing and other operating facilities summarized above, our business operations also utilize approximately 6 warehouses worldwide. As of December 31, 2020, we owned or leased a total of approximately 5 million square feet of facility space worldwide. We believe that our production facilities are suitable for their present and intended purposes and adequate for our current level of operations.
Item 3. Legal Proceedings
As disclosed in our Current Report on Form 8-K filed with the SEC on December 3, 2018, we fully cooperated with an SEC investigation related to the material weakness in internal controls over financial reporting as of December 31, 2017 disclosed in our 2017 Form 10-K. The investigation is closed as we reached a settlement with the SEC during the year ended December 31, 2020, which did not have a material effect on our results of operations.
On November 24, 2020, the Company announced a data incident involving unauthorized access and copying of some current and former employee data, as well as limited company information regarding some business partners. In January 2021, Anand Edke filed a putative class action lawsuit against the Company in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, Case No. 2021 CH 47. In February 2021, Kia Mackey filed a separate putative class action lawsuit against the Company in the U.S District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri, Case No. 4:21-CV-00149. The plaintiffs have each asked for injunctive relief, unspecified damages, and unspecified legal fees. It is premature to estimate the potential exposure to the Company associated with the litigation. The Company intends to vigorously defend the lawsuits.
We are also a party to various legal proceedings and administrative actions that are incidental to our operations. In our opinion, the proceedings and actions in which we are involved should not, individually or in the aggregate, have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, operating results, or cash flows. However, since the trends and outcome of this litigation are inherently uncertain, we cannot give absolute assurance regarding the future resolution of such litigation, or that such litigation may not become material in the future.
Item 4. Mine Safety Disclosures
Item 5. Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Shareholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
Our common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “BDC.” As of February 11, 2021, there were 235 record holders of common stock of Belden Inc.
On November 29, 2018, our Board of Directors authorized a share repurchase program, which allowed us to purchase up to $300.0 million of our common stock through open market repurchases, negotiated transactions, or other means, in accordance with applicable securities laws and other restrictions. This program was funded with cash on hand and cash flows from operating activities. During 2020, we repurchased 1.0 million shares of our common stock under the share repurchase program for an aggregate cost of $35.0 million at an average price per share of $35.83. Since the inception of this program, we have repurchased a total of 1.9 million shares of our common stock under the program for an aggregate cost of $85.0 million and an average price per share of $45.54.
Stock Performance Graph
The following graph compares the cumulative total shareholder return on Belden’s common stock over the five-year period ended December 31, 2020, with the cumulative total return during such period of the Standard and Poor’s 500 Stock Index and the Standard and Poor’s 1500 Industrials Index. The comparison assumes $100 was invested on December 31, 2015, in Belden’s common stock and in each of the foregoing indices and assumes reinvestment of dividends. The stock performance shown on the graph below represents historical stock performance and is not necessarily indicative of future stock price performance.
(1)The chart above and the accompanying data are “furnished,” not “filed,” with the SEC.
Total Return To Shareholders
(Includes reinvestment of dividends)
|ANNUAL RETURN PERCENTAGE|
Years Ended December 31,
|Company Name / Index|| ||2016||2017||2018||2019||2020|
|Belden Inc.||57.3 ||%||3.5 ||%||(45.7)||%||32.1 ||%||(23.4)||%|
|S&P 500 Index||12.0 ||%||21.8 ||%||(4.4)||%||31.5 ||%||18.4 ||%|
|S&P 1500 Industrials Index||20.4 ||%||21.1 ||%||(13.4)||%||29.8 ||%||11.7 ||%|
| || ||INDEXED RETURNS|
| || ||Years Ended December 31,|
|Company Name / Index||Base Period|
|Belden Inc.||$||100.00 ||$||157.30 ||$||162.78 ||$||88.39 ||$||116.81 ||$||89.48 |
|S&P 500 Index||100.00 ||111.96 ||136.40 ||130.42 ||171.49 ||203.04 |
|S&P 1500 Industrials Index||100.00 ||120.41 ||145.77 ||126.27 ||163.90 ||183.06 |
Item 6. Selected Financial Data
Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations
We are a global supplier of specialty networking solutions built around two global business platforms – Enterprise Solutions and Industrial Solutions. Our comprehensive portfolio of signal transmission solutions provides industry leading secure and reliable transmission of data, sound, and video for mission critical applications. Effective January 1, 2020, we transferred our West Penn Wire business and multi-conductor product lines from the Enterprise Solutions segment to the Industrial Solutions segment as a result of a shift in responsibilities among the segments. We have recast the prior period segment information to conform to the change in the composition of reportable segments.
We strive to create shareholder value by:
•Delivering highly engineered signal transmission solutions for mission-critical applications in a diverse set of global markets;
•Maintaining a balanced product portfolio across end markets, applications, and geographies that allows for a disciplined approach to growth;
•Capturing additional market share by using our Market Delivery System to improve channel and end-user relationships and to concentrate sales efforts on customers in higher growth geographies and vertical end-markets;
•Managing our product portfolio to provide innovative and complete end-to-end solutions for our customers in applications for which we have operational expertise and can drive customer loyalty;
•Acquiring leading companies with innovative product portfolios and opportunities for synergies which fit within our strategic framework;
•Continuously improving our processes and systems through scalable, flexible, and sustainable business systems for talent management, Lean enterprise, and acquisition cultivation and integration; and
•Protecting and enhancing the value of the Belden brands.
We believe our business system, balance across markets and geographies, systematic go-to-market approach, extensive portfolio of innovative solutions, commitment to Lean principles, and improving margin profile present a unique value proposition for our shareholders.
We consider adjusted revenue growth on a constant currency basis, adjusted EBITDA margin, free cash flow, and return on invested capital to be our key operating performance indicators. Our current business goals are to:
•Grow adjusted revenues on a constant currency basis by 5-7% per year, from a combination of end market growth, market share capture, and contributions from acquisitions;
•Achieve adjusted EBITDA margins in the range of 20-22%;
•Achieve free cash flow growth in the range of 13-15%; and
•Realize return on invested capital of 13-15%.
Significant Trends and Events in 2020
The following trends and events during 2020 had varying effects on our financial condition, results of operations, and cash flows.
On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) a pandemic. We expect the outbreak of COVID-19 will continue to result in significant economic disruption and will continue to adversely affect our business in the future. As compared to the year ago period, we expect to continue to experience reductions in customer demand in several of our end-markets. We expect that the social distancing measures, the reduced operational status of some of our suppliers and reductions in production at certain facilities will continue to have an adverse impact on our operations, and general business uncertainty will continue to negatively impact demand in several of our end-markets in the near future.
Our foremost focus has been on the health and safety of our employees and customers. In response to the outbreak, we have modified practices at our manufacturing locations and offices to adhere to guidance from the WHO, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other local health and governmental authorities with respect to social distancing, physical separation, personal protective equipment and sanitization. We are approaching our response to this outbreak with a recognition that we provide essential and important products and services upon which our customers rely upon daily to support critical functions. Therefore, most, but not all, of our U.S. and global facilities have remained substantially operational during the outbreak while implementing enhanced safety protocols designed to protect the well-being of our employees.
The extent of the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on our operational and financial performance will depend on certain developments, including the duration and spread of the outbreak, its impact on our customers and suppliers and the range of governmental and community reactions to the pandemic, which are uncertain and cannot be fully predicted at this time. We will continue to proactively respond to the situation and may take further actions that alter our business operations as may be required by governmental authorities, or that we determine are in the best interests of our employees and customers.
Data Security Incident
In November 2020, our information technology network was impacted by a data incident. We took immediate steps to contain the incident as well as notified law enforcement and cybersecurity experts. This matter did not impact production at our manufacturing plants nor shipping and quality control. The personal information of current and former employees, as well as limited company information of some of our business partners was accessed. We timely notified the impacted individuals and companies in addition to the appropriate governmental data privacy authorities. Impacted individuals were offered credit monitoring and/or identity protection services, where available, at no charge. We do not believe that the incident will have a material impact on our business or financial condition. Security, in all forms, remains a critical priority, and we will continue to take all appropriate measures to further safeguard the integrity of our information technology infrastructure.
Our exposure to currency rate fluctuations primarily relates to exchange rate movements between the U.S. dollar and the euro, Canadian dollar, Hong Kong dollar, Chinese yuan, Mexican peso, Australian dollar, British pound, Indian rupee, and Brazilian real. Generally, as the U.S. dollar strengthens against these foreign currencies, our revenues and earnings are negatively impacted as our foreign denominated revenues and earnings are translated into U.S. dollars at a lower rate. Conversely, as the U.S. dollar weakens against foreign currencies, our revenues and earnings are positively impacted. Because all of our senior subordinated notes are denominated in euros, interest expense on the notes is affected by exchange rate movements between the U.S. dollar and the euro.
In addition to the translation impact described above, currency rate fluctuations have an economic impact on our financial results. As the U.S. dollar strengthens or weakens against foreign currencies, it results in a relative price increase or decrease for certain of our products that are priced in U.S. dollars in a foreign location.
Our operating results can be affected by changes in prices of commodities, primarily copper and compounds, which are components in some of the products we sell. Generally, as the costs of inventory purchases increase due to higher commodity prices, we raise selling prices to customers to cover the increase in costs, resulting in higher sales revenue but a lower gross profit percentage. Conversely, a decrease in commodity prices would result in lower sales revenue but a higher gross profit percentage. Selling prices of our products are affected by many factors, including end market demand, capacity utilization, overall economic conditions, and commodity prices. Importantly, however, there is no exact measure of the effect of changing commodity prices, as there are thousands of transactions in any given quarter, each of which has various factors involved in the individual pricing decisions. Therefore, all references to the effect of copper prices or other commodity prices are estimates.
Our operating results also can be affected by the levels of Belden products purchased and held as inventory by our channel partners and customers. Our channel partners and customers purchase and hold our products in their inventory in order to meet the service and on-time delivery requirements of their customers. Generally, as our channel partners and customers change the level of Belden products owned and held in their inventory, it impacts our revenues. Comparisons of our results between periods can be impacted by changes in the levels of channel inventory. We are dependent upon our channel partners to provide us with information regarding the amount of our products that they own and hold in their inventory. As such, all references to the effect of channel inventory changes are estimates.
Market Growth and Market Share
The markets in which we operate can generally be characterized as highly competitive and highly fragmented, with many players. Based on available data for our served markets, we estimate that our market share across our segments is significant, ranging from approximately 5% - 20%. A substantial acquisition in one of our served markets would be necessary to meaningfully change our estimated market share percentage. We monitor available data regarding market growth, including independent market research reports, publicly available indices, and the financial results of our direct and indirect peer companies, in order to estimate the extent to which our served markets grew or contracted during a particular period. We generally expect that our unit sales volume will increase or decrease consistently with the market growth rate. Our strategic goal is to utilize our Market Delivery System to target faster growing geographies, applications, and trends within our end markets, in order to achieve growth that is higher than the general market growth rate. To the extent that we exceed the market growth rates, we consider it to be the result of capturing market share.
Grass Valley Disposal
During the fourth quarter of 2019, we committed to a plan to sell Grass Valley, and at such time, met all of the criteria to classify the assets and liabilities of this business as held for sale. As a result, the Grass Valley disposal group, which was included in our Enterprise Solutions segment, has been reported within discontinued operations as of such time, and the comparable prior period information has been recast accordingly to exclude the Grass Valley disposal group from continuing operations, with the exception of the Consolidated Cash Flow Statements. The Grass Valley disposal group excludes certain Grass Valley pension plans retained by Belden. Prior to the divestiture, we wrote down the carrying value of Grass Valley and recognized asset impairments totaling $113.0 million during 2020. We completed the sale of Grass Valley to Black Dragon Capital on July 2, 2020 and recognized a loss of $9.9 million, net of $7.5 million income tax expense. The terms of the sale included gross cash consideration of $120.0 million, approximately $56.2 million net of cash delivered with the business. The sale also included deferred consideration consisting of a $175.0 million seller’s note that is set to mature in 2025, up to $88 million in PIK (payment-in-kind) interest on the seller’s note, and $178.0 million in potential earnout payments. The seller’s note accrues PIK interest at an annual rate of 8.5%. During the year ended December 31, 2020, the seller’s note accrued interest of $7.8 million, which we reserved for based on our expected loss allowance methodology. Based upon a third party valuation specialist using certain assumptions in a Monte Carlo analysis, the estimated fair value of the seller’s note is $34.9 million, which we recorded in Other Long-Lived Assets. As part of the transaction, we also invested $3.0 million for a 9% equity interest in Grass Valley with the right to put the equity back to Black Dragon Capital. We exercised our right during the fourth quarter of 2020 and sold our 9% equity interest in Grass Valley to Black Dragon Capital for $2.7 million. We deconsolidated Grass Valley as of July 2, 2020 and accounted for our equity interest under the cost method for the period that we owned a 9% interest in Grass Valley. We are performing certain services for Grass Valley under a transition services agreement. During 2020, the amount of transition services totaled $2.0 million, which we expect to collect in 2021. As of December 31, 2020, we do not own any interest in Grass Valley. Grass Valley's operating results for periods after July 2, 2020 are not included in our Consolidated Financial Statements. See Note 5.
Earnout Consideration Payment
During the year ended December 31, 2020 and prior to the Grass Valley disposal, we paid the sellers of Snell Advanced Media (SAM) the full earnout consideration of $31.4 million in cash in accordance with the purchase agreement. SAM was acquired on February 8, 2018 and was included in the Grass Valley disposal group. See Notes 1 and 5.
Effective January 1, 2020, we transferred our West Penn Wire business and multi-conductor product lines from the Enterprise Solutions segment to the Industrial Solutions segment as a result of a shift in responsibilities among the segments. We have recast the prior period segment information to conform to the change in the composition of reportable segments. See Note 6.
Cost Reduction Program
During 2019, we began a cost reduction program to improve performance and enhance margins by streamlining the organizational structure and investing in technology to drive productivity. We recognized $4.0 million of severance and other restructuring costs for this program during 2020. These costs were incurred by both the Enterprise Solutions and Industrial Solutions segments. The cost reduction program is expected to deliver an estimated $60 million reduction in selling, general, and administrative expenses on an annual basis; approximately $40 million of which was realized in 2020, and the full benefit is expected to be materialized in 2021. We also expect to incur incremental costs of approximately $8 million for this program in 2021. See Note 15.
FutureLink, Opterna, and SPC Integration Program
In 2019, we began a restructuring program to integrate FutureLink, Opterna, and SPC with our existing businesses. The restructuring and integration activities were focused on achieving desired cost savings by consolidating existing and acquired facilities and other support functions. We recognized $4.9 million of severance and other restructuring costs for this program during 2020. These costs were incurred by the Enterprise Solutions segment. We expect to incur incremental costs of approximately $1 million for this program in 2021. See Note 15.
Revolving Credit Agreement
Due to the initial uncertainties arising from the COVID-19 pandemic and out of an abundance of caution, in April 2020 we borrowed $190.0 million on our Revolver, which we fully repaid by December 31, 2020 as a result of improved and sufficient liquidity and cash flow. Our Revolving Credit Agreement provides a $400.0 million multi-currency asset-based revolving credit facility and matures on May 16, 2022. Interest on outstanding borrowings is variable, based upon LIBOR or other similar indices in foreign jurisdictions, plus a spread that ranges from 1.25%-1.75%, depending upon our leverage position. As of December 31, 2020, we had no borrowings outstanding on the Revolver, and our available borrowing capacity was $230.2 million. See Note 16.
Share Repurchase Program
In 2018, our Board of Directors authorized a share repurchase program, which allows us to purchase up to $300.0 million of our common stock through open market repurchases, negotiated transactions, or other means, in accordance with applicable securities laws and other restrictions. This program is funded with cash on hand and cash flows from operating activities. During the year ended December 31, 2020, we repurchased 1.0 million shares of our common stock under the share repurchase program for an aggregate cost of $35.0 million at an average price per share of $35.83. See Note 24.
Results of Operations
Consolidated Income from Continuing Operations before Taxes
Years Ended December 31,
| ||2020||2019||2018||2020 vs. 2019||2019 vs. 2018|
| ||(In thousands, except percentages)|
|Revenues||$||1,862,716 ||$||2,131,278 ||$||2,165,702 ||(12.6)||%||(1.6)||%|
|Gross profit||663,289 ||793,505 ||829,911 ||(16.4)||%||(4.4)||%|
|Selling, general and administrative expenses||366,188 ||417,329 ||411,352 ||(12.3)||%||1.5 ||%|
|Research and development expenses||107,296 ||94,360 ||91,552 ||13.7 ||%||3.1 ||%|
|Amortization of intangibles||64,395 ||74,609 ||75,140 ||(13.7)||%||(0.7)||%|
|Gain from patent litigation||— ||— ||62,141 ||n/a||(100.0)||%|
|Operating income||125,410 ||207,207 ||314,008 ||(39.5)||%||(34.0)||%|
|Interest expense, net||58,888 ||55,814 ||60,839 ||5.5 ||%||(8.3)||%|
|Non-operating pension benefit (cost)||(395)||1,017 ||(99)||(138.8)||%||1,127.3 ||%|
|Loss on debt extinguishment||— ||— ||22,990 ||n/a||(100.0)||%|
|Income from continuing operations before taxes||66,127 ||152,410 ||230,080 ||(56.6)||%||(33.8)||%|
2020 Compared to 2019
Revenues decreased $268.6 million from 2019 to 2020 due to the following factors:
•Lower sales volume, including the impact of changes in channel inventory, contributed $302.7 million to the decrease in revenues.
•Currency translation had a $1.9 million unfavorable impact on revenues.
•Acquisitions increased revenues by $34.3 million.
•Copper prices had a $1.7 million favorable impact on revenues.
Gross profit decreased $130.2 million from 2019 to 2020 due to the decreases in revenues discussed above as well as unfavorable mix; partially offset by the impact of acquisitions.
Selling, general and administrative expenses decreased $51.1 million from 2019 to 2020. Benefits realized from our Cost Reduction Program coupled with productivity improvement initiatives contributed an estimated $43.1 million decline in selling, general and administrative expenses. A decrease in severance, restructuring and acquisition integration costs; decreases in commission costs; and currency translation contributed an estimated $11.6 million; $3.5 million; and $0.5 million decline in selling, general and administrative expenses, respectively. These decreases were partially offset by a $7.6 million increase from acquisitions.
Research and development expenses increased $12.9 million from 2019 to 2020 primarily due to increased investments in R&D projects as we continue our commitment to growth initiatives.
Amortization of intangibles decreased $10.2 million from 2019 to 2020 primarily due to certain intangible assets becoming fully amortized.
Operating income decreased $81.8 million from 2019 to 2020 primarily as a result of the decline in gross profit discussed above.
Net interest expense increased $3.1 million from 2019 to 2020. The increase is primarily the result of interest accrued on the Revolver borrowings during 2020 coupled with currency translation. During 2020, we borrowed $190.0 million on our Revolver, which we fully repaid by December 31, 2020. See Note 16.
Income from continuing operations before taxes decreased $86.3 million from 2019 to 2020 primarily due to the decline in operating income discussed above.
2019 Compared to 2018
Revenues decreased $34.4 million from 2018 to 2019 due to the following factors:
•Currency translation had a $28.0 million unfavorable impact on revenues.
•Lower sales volume, including the impact of changes in channel inventory and weaker industrial markets, resulted in a $21.6 million decrease in revenues.
•Lower copper costs resulted in a $17.2 million decrease in revenues.
•Acquisitions increased revenues by $32.4 million.
Gross profit decreased $36.4 million from 2018 to 2019. The decrease in gross profit is primarily attributable to the decrease in revenues discussed above as well as unfavorable product mix and the impact of lower production volumes. Gross profit for 2019 included $3.4 million of severance, restructuring, and acquisition integration costs; $0.6 million of cost of sales arising from the adjustment of inventory to fair value related to acquisitions; and $0.5 million for the amortization of software development intangible assets. Gross profit for 2018 included $18.0 million of severance, restructuring, and acquisition integration costs and $0.1 million for the amortization of software development intangible assets.
Selling, general and administrative expenses increased $6.0 million from 2018 to 2019 primarily due to an $18.5 million increase in severance, restructuring, and acquisition integration costs and a $5.4 million increase from acquisitions. These increases were partially offset by the impact of productivity improvement initiatives, currency translation, decrease in costs related to patent litigation, and purchase accounting effects of acquisitions, which attributed to a decline in selling, general and administrative expenses of $9.5 million, $4.1 million, $2.6 million, and $1.7 million, respectively.
Research and development expenses increased $2.8 million from 2018 to 2019 primarily due to investments in research and development as well as acquisitions, which contributed $3.9 million and $0.3 million, respectively. These increases were partially offset by currency translation of $1.4 million.
Amortization of intangibles decreased $0.5 million from 2018 to 2019 primarily due to certain intangible assets becoming fully amortized, partially offset by the amortization expense for intangible assets from the acquisitions of SPC and Opterna. See Note 4.
The $62.1 million gain from patent litigation in 2018 is for judgments received in 2018 from the patent infringement case filed in 2011 by our wholly-owned subsidiary, PPC, against Corning alleging they willfully infringed upon two patents. After years of post-trial motions and appeals, the District Court ruled in favor of PPC and required Corning to pay judgments of $62.1 million in 2018 to PPC. See Note 2.
Operating income decreased $106.8 million from 2018 to 2019 primarily due to the gain from the patent litigation in 2018, decrease in gross profit discussed above, and changes in operating expenses discussed above.
Net interest expense decreased $5.0 million from 2018 to 2019 as a result of our debt refinancing during 2018. In March 2018, we issued €350.0 million aggregate principal amount of new senior subordinated notes due 2028 at an interest rate of 3.875%, and used the net proceeds of this offering and cash on hand to repurchase all of our outstanding €200.0 million 5.5% senior subordinated notes due 2023 as well as all of our outstanding $200.0 million 5.25% senior subordinated notes due 2024.
The loss on debt extinguishment recognized in 2018 represents the premium paid to the bond holders to retire the 2023 and 2024 notes as well as the unamortized debt issuance costs that were written-off.
Income from continuing operations before taxes decreased $77.7 million from 2018 to 2019 primarily due to the decrease in operating income, partially offset by the decrease in interest expense and loss on debt extinguishment discussed above.
| || || ||Percentage Change|
| ||2020||2019||2018||2020 vs. 2019||2019 vs. 2018|
| ||(In thousands, except percentages)|
|Income from continuing operations before taxes||$||66,127 ||$||152,410 ||$||230,080 ||(56.6)||%||(33.8)||%|
|Income tax expense||(11,724)||(42,519)||(62,936)||(72.4)||%||(32.4)||%|
|Effective tax rate||17.7 ||%||27.9 ||%||27.4 ||%|
We recognized income tax expense of $11.7 million in 2020, representing an effective tax rate of 17.7%. The effective tax rate was impacted by foreign tax rate differences, which resulted in an income tax benefit of $25.3 million in 2020. Additionally, in 2020, our income tax expense was reduced by $4.0 million due to a tax holiday for our operations in St. Kitts. The tax holiday in St. Kitts is scheduled to expire in 2022. Partially offsetting these benefits, we recognized income tax expense of $22.4 million in 2020 from domestic permanent differences and tax credits primarily associated with our foreign income inclusions.
In March 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) was signed into law in the United States. The Company generated a loss in the U.S. which will be carried back to prior years, as permitted by the CARES Act. The net impact to the tax provision as a result of the net operating loss carry back was a benefit of $1.2 million, primarily associated with the re-rate of the net operating loss carry back period.
If we were to repatriate foreign cash to the U.S., we may be required to accrue and pay U.S. taxes in accordance with applicable U.S. tax rules and regulations as a result of the repatriation. However, it is our intent to permanently reinvest the earnings of our non-U.S. subsidiaries in those operations and for continued non-U.S. growth opportunities. As a result, as of December 31, 2020, we have not made a provision for U.S. or additional foreign withholding taxes. See Note 18
We recognized income tax expense of $42.5 million in 2019, representing an effective tax rate of 27.9%. The effective tax rate was primarily impacted by a change in valuation allowance on certain deferred tax assets and foreign tax rate differences. During the fourth quarter of 2019, the United States Treasury issued final and proposed regulations with respect to certain aspects related to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (the “Act”). Additional guidance provided in these regulations resulted in a tax adjustment in the fourth quarter of 2019. Our income tax expense was also impacted by foreign tax rate differences, which reduced our income tax expense by approximately $13.1 million in 2019.
As of December 31, 2019, we maintained a valuation allowance on our deferred tax assets of $50.4 million. Of this amount, approximately $43.0 million relates to deferred tax assets for certain U.S foreign tax credits and U.S. state net operating losses and tax credits. The $33.9 million valuation allowance on the foreign tax credits is a direct result of the regulations issued by the United States Treasury in the fourth quarter of 2019, the Act and the impact of classifying a business as discontinued operations. The remaining $9.1 million valuation allowance primarily relates to state net operating losses and tax credits. While we have positive evidence in the form of projected sources of income, we determined that these state carryforward assets were not realizable as of December 31, 2019 due to a history of net operating losses and tax credits expiring without being utilized in certain states and because the current forecast of income is not sufficient to utilize all of these state net operating losses and tax credits prior to expiration.
We recognized income tax expense of $62.9 million in 2018, representing an effective tax rate of 27.4%. The effective tax rate was impacted by the Act, Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 118 (“SAB 118”), and foreign tax rate differences. On December 22, 2018, the measurement period ended for SAB 118, which was issued to address the application of U.S. GAAP in situations where a registrant does not have the necessary information available, prepared, or analyzed (including computations) in reasonable detail to complete the accounting for certain income tax effects of the Act resulting in additional SAB 118 tax expense of $10.0 million for the year ended December 31, 2018.
The total tax expense for the year ended December 31, 2018 included $8.0 million of tax expense associated with an increase in the valuation allowance against foreign tax credit carryovers that we no longer expected to be able to realize based upon the new tax law, a $2.4 million benefit from foreign tax rate differences, a $1.3 million tax expense adjustment to the transition tax on the deemed repatriation of cumulative foreign earnings, $1.1 million of tax expense resulting from a valuation allowance established on the deferred tax assets associated with stock options of covered employees, and a $0.4 million income tax benefit associated with a remeasurement adjustment of certain deferred tax assets and liabilities.
Our income tax expense and effective tax rate in future periods may be impacted by many factors, including our geographic mix of income and changes in tax laws.
Consolidated Adjusted EBITDA
Years Ended December 31,
| ||(In thousands, except percentages)|
|GAAP and adjusted revenues||$||1,862,716 ||$||2,131,278 ||$||2,165,702 |
|GAAP net income (loss)||$||(55,058)||$||(376,776)||$||160,711 |
|Loss from discontinued operations, net of tax||99,513 ||486,667 ||6,433 |
|Loss on disposal of discontinued operations, net of tax||9,948 ||— ||— |
|Amortization of intangible assets||64,395 ||74,609 ||75,140 |
|Amortization of software development intangible assets||1,821 ||525 ||79 |
|Depreciation expense||42,470 ||40,409 ||38,309 |
|Interest expense, net||58,888 ||55,814 ||60,839 |
Severance, restructuring, and acquisition integration costs (1)
|12,258 ||26,544 ||22,625 |
|Income tax expense||11,724 ||42,519 ||62,936 |
|Non-operating pension settlement loss||3,153 ||— ||1,342 |
Purchase accounting effects related to acquisitions (2)
|125 ||592 ||1,690 |
|Loss on debt extinguishment||— ||— ||22,990 |
|Costs related to patent litigation||— ||— ||2,634 |
Loss on sale of assets (3)
|— ||— ||94 |
|Gain from patent litigation||— ||— ||(62,141)|
|Adjusted EBITDA||$||249,237 ||$||350,903 ||$||393,681 |
|GAAP net income (loss) margin||(3.0)||%||(17.7)||%||7.4 ||%|
|Adjusted EBITDA margin||13.4 ||%||16.5 ||%||18.2 ||%|
(1)See Note 15, Severance, Restructuring, and Acquisition Integration Activities, for details.
(2)In 2020 and 2019, we collectively recognized $0.1 million and $0.6 million, respectively, of cost of sales related to purchase accounting adjustments of acquired inventory to fair value for both our SPC and Opterna acquisitions. In 2018, we made a $1.7 million adjustment to increase the earn-out liability associated with an acquisition.
(3)In 2018, we recognized a $0.1 million loss on sale of assets for the sale of our MCS business and Hirschmann JV. See Note 2.
Use of Non-GAAP Financial Information
Adjusted Revenues, Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA margin, and free cash flow are non-GAAP financial measures. In addition to reporting financial results in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States, we provide non-GAAP operating results adjusted for certain items, including: asset impairments; accelerated depreciation expense due to plant consolidation activities; purchase accounting effects related to acquisitions, such as the adjustment of acquired inventory and deferred revenue to fair value, and transaction costs; severance, restructuring, and acquisition integration costs; gains (losses) recognized on the disposal of businesses and tangible assets; amortization of intangible assets; gains (losses) on debt extinguishment; certain revenues and gains (losses) from patent settlements; discontinued operations; and other costs. We adjust for the items listed above in all periods presented, unless the impact is clearly immaterial to our financial statements. When we calculate the tax effect of the adjustments, we include all current and deferred income tax expense commensurate with the adjusted measure of pre-tax profitability.
We utilize the adjusted results to review our ongoing operations without the effect of these adjustments and for comparison to budgeted operating results. We believe the adjusted results are useful to investors because they help them compare our results to previous periods and provide important insights into underlying trends in the business and how management oversees our business operations on a day-to-day basis. As an example, we adjust for the purchase accounting effect of recording deferred revenue at fair value in order to reflect the revenues that would have otherwise been recorded by acquired businesses had they remained as independent entities. We believe this presentation is useful in evaluating the underlying performance of acquired companies. Similarly, we adjust for other acquisition-related expenses, such as amortization of intangibles and other impacts of fair value adjustments because they generally are not related to the acquired businesses' core business performance. As an additional example, we exclude the costs of restructuring programs, which can occur from time to time for our current businesses and/or recently acquired businesses. We exclude the costs in calculating adjusted results to allow us and investors to evaluate the performance of the business based upon its expected ongoing operating structure. We believe the adjusted
measures, accompanied by the disclosure of the costs of these programs, provides valuable insight. Adjusted results should be considered only in conjunction with results reported according to accounting principles generally accepted in the United States.
| || || || ||Percentage Change|
| ||2020||2019||2018||2020 vs. 2019||2019 vs. 2018|
| ||(In thousands, except percentages)|
|Adjusted Revenues||$||1,862,716 ||$||2,131,278 ||$||2,165,702 ||(12.6)||%||(1.6)||%|
|Adjusted EBITDA||249,237 ||350,903 ||393,681 ||(29.0)||%||(10.9)||%|
|as a percent of adjusted revenues||13.4 ||%||16.5 ||%||18.2 ||%|
2020 Compared to 2019
Revenues decreased $268.6 million from 2019 to 2020 due to the following factors:
•Lower sales volume, including the impact of changes in channel inventory, contributed $302.7 million to the decrease in revenues.
•Currency translation had a $1.9 million unfavorable impact on revenues.
•Acquisitions increased revenues by $34.3 million.
•Copper prices had a $1.7 million favorable impact on revenues.
Adjusted EBITDA decreased $101.7 million in 2020 from 2019 primarily due to the decrease in revenues discussed above, partially offset by the benefits realized from our SG&A Cost Reduction Program.
2019 Compared to 2018
Revenues decreased $34.4 million from 2018 to 2019 due to the following factors:
•Currency translation had a $28.0 million unfavorable impact on revenues.
•Lower sales volume, including the impact of changes in channel inventory and weaker industrial markets, resulted in a $21.6 million decrease in revenues.
•Lower copper costs resulted in a $17.2 million decrease in revenues.
•Acquisitions increased revenues by $32.4 million.
Adjusted EBITDA decreased $42.8 million in 2019 from 2018 primarily due to the decrease in revenues discussed above as well as unfavorable product mix and the impact of lower production volumes.
Segment Results of Operations
For additional information regarding our segment measures, see Note 6 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
| || || || ||Percentage Change|
| ||2020||2019||2018||2020 vs. 2019||2019 vs. 2018|
| ||(In thousands, except percentages)|
|Segment Revenues||$||872,415 ||$||946,041 ||$||957,501 ||(7.8)||%||(1.2)||%|
|Segment EBITDA||99,333 ||126,925 ||156,790 ||(21.7)||%||(19.0)||%|
|as a percent of segment revenues||11.4 ||%||13.4 ||%||16.4 ||%|
2020 Compared to 2019
Enterprise revenues decreased $73.6 million in 2020 as compared to 2019. Decreases in volume, including changes in channel inventory, and unfavorable currency translation contributed $108.1 million and $0.3 million, respectively, to the decline in revenues; partially offset by acquisitions and higher copper prices which grew revenues by $34.3 million and $0.5 million, respectively.
Enterprise EBITDA decreased $27.6 million in 2020 as compared to 2019 primarily due to the decreases in revenues discussed above, partially offset by the benefits realized from our SG&A Cost Reduction Program.
2019 Compared to 2018
Enterprise revenues decreased $11.5 million in 2019 as compared to 2018 primarily due to decreases in volume, including changes in channel inventory; lower copper prices; and unfavorable currency translation, which contributed $28.5 million, $8.4 million, and $7.0 million, respectively, to the decrease in revenues over the year ago period; partially offset by the impact of acquisitions which grew revenues $32.4 million.
Enterprise EBITDA decreased $29.9 million in 2019 as compared to 2018 primarily due to the decreases in revenues discussed above as well as the impact of lower production volumes.
| || || || ||Percentage Change|
| ||2020||2019||2018||2020 vs. 2019||2019 vs. 2018|
| ||(In thousands, except percentages)|
|Segment Revenues||$||990,301 ||$||1,185,237 ||$||1,208,201 ||(16.4)||%||(1.9)||%|
|Segment EBITDA||147,626 ||226,110 ||237,870 ||(34.7)||%||(4.9)||%|
|as a percent of segment revenues||14.9 ||%||19.1 ||%||19.7 ||%|
2020 Compared to 2019
Industrial Solutions revenues decreased $194.9 million in 2020 as compared to 2019 primarily due to decreases in volume, including changes in channel inventory, and unfavorable currency translation, which contributed $194.5 million and $1.6 million, respectively, to the decrease in revenues; partially offset by increases in copper prices, which grew revenues $1.2 million.
Industrial EBITDA decreased $78.5 million in 2020 as compared to 2019 primarily as a result of the decline in revenues discussed above and increased investments in R&D projects as we continue our commitment to growth initiatives, partially offset by the benefits realized from our SG&A Cost Reduction Program.
2019 Compared to 2018
Industrial Solutions revenues decreased $22.9 million in 2019 as compared to 2018 primarily due to unfavorable currency translation and lower copper prices, which contributed $21.0 million and $8.8 million, respectively, to the decrease in revenues over the year ago period; partially offset by increases in volume, which grew revenues $6.9 million year-over-year.
Industrial EBITDA decreased $11.8 million in 2019 as compared to 2018 primarily due to the decline in revenues discussed above and the impact of lower production volumes.
Liquidity and Capital Resources
Significant factors affecting our cash liquidity include (1) cash provided by operating activities, (2) disposals of businesses and tangible assets, (3) cash used for acquisitions, restructuring actions, capital expenditures, share repurchases, dividends, and senior subordinated note repurchases, and (4) our available credit facilities and other borrowing arrangements. We expect our operating activities to generate cash in 2021 and believe our sources of liquidity are sufficient to fund current working capital requirements, capital expenditures, contributions to our retirement plans, share repurchases, senior subordinated note repurchases, quarterly dividend payments, and our short-term operating strategies. However, we may require external financing were we to complete a significant acquisition. Our ability to continue to fund our future needs from business operations could be affected by many factors, including, but not limited to: economic conditions worldwide, customer demand, competitive market forces, customer acceptance of our product offerings, and commodities pricing.
The following table is derived from our Consolidated Cash Flow Statements and includes the results and cash flow activity of Grass Valley through the disposal date of July 2, 2020 consistent with the Consolidated Cash Flow Statements:
| ||Years Ended December 31,|
| ||(In thousands)|
|Net cash provided by (used for):|
|Operating activities||$||173,364 ||$||276,893 |
|Effects of currency exchange rate changes on cash and cash equivalents||9,299 ||(301)|
|Increase in cash and cash equivalents||76,109 ||5,275 |
|Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of year||425,885 ||420,610 |
|Cash and cash equivalents, end of year||$||501,994 ||$||425,885 |
Net cash provided by operating activities totaled $173.4 million for 2020 compared to $276.9 million for 2019. Operating cash flows declined $103.5 million compared to the prior year primarily due to the decreases in revenues and income discussed above. Changes in receivables generated $70.7 million of cash in 2020 compared to $22.9 million in 2019 as days sales outstanding improved from 51.8 days in the fourth quarter of 2019 to 49.6 days in the fourth quarter of 2020. The improvement in receivables was offset by changes in inventory, which was a use of cash of $8.5 million in 2020 compared to a source of cash of $44.5 million in 2019.
Net cash used for investing activities totaled $31.6 million for 2020 compared to $184.4 million for 2019. Investing activities for 2020 included capital expenditures of $90.2 million and proceeds of $54.8 million, $3.2 million, and $0.6 million from the sale of the Grass Valley disposal group, the sale of tangible property, and a working capital adjustment related to the SPC acquisition, respectively. Investing activities for 2019 included capital expenditures of $110.0 million and payments, net of cash acquired, for acquisitions of $74.4 million.
Net cash flows used for financing activities totaled $74.9 million for 2020 compared to $86.9 million for 2019. Financing activities for 2020 included payments under our share repurchase program of $35.0 million, acquisition earnout consideration payments of $29.3 million, cash dividend payments of $9.0 million, and net payments related to share based compensation activities of $1.4 million. Financing activities for 2019 included payments under our share repurchase program of $50.0 million; cash dividend payments of $34.4 million, net payments related to share based compensation activities of $2.1 million; and interest payments on our financing leases of $0.4 million.
Our cash and cash equivalents balance was $502.0 million as of December 31, 2020. Of this amount, $214.1 million was held outside of the U.S. in our foreign operations. Substantially all of the foreign cash and cash equivalents are readily convertible into U.S. dollars or other foreign currencies. Our strategic plan does not require the repatriation of foreign cash in order to fund our operations in the U.S., and it is our current intention to permanently reinvest the foreign cash and cash equivalents outside of the U.S. If we were to repatriate the foreign cash to the U.S., we may be required to accrue and pay U.S. taxes in accordance with applicable U.S. tax rules and regulations as a result of the repatriation. See Note 18, Income Taxes in the accompanying notes to our consolidated financial statements.
Our outstanding debt obligations as of December 31, 2020 consisted of $1.6 billion of senior subordinated notes. As of December 31, 2020, we had no borrowings outstanding on the Revolver, and our available borrowing capacity was $230.2 million. Additional discussion regarding our various borrowing arrangements is included in Note 16 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
Contractual obligations outstanding at December 31, 2020, have the following scheduled maturities:
| ||(In thousands)|
Long-term debt payment obligations (1)(2)
|$||1,590,810 ||$||— ||$||— ||$||367,110 ||$||1,223,700 |
|Interest payments on long-term debt obligations||349,309 ||55,831 ||111,663 ||109,024 ||72,791 |
Operating lease obligations (3)
|75,958 ||19,557 ||29,204 ||18,296 ||8,901 |
Purchase obligations (4)
|16,007 ||16,007 ||— ||— ||— |
Other commitments (5)
|8,574 ||1,675 ||5,594 ||1,305 ||— |
|Pension and other postemployment obligations||79,965 ||12,902 ||22,479 ||17,839 ||26,745 |
|Total||$||2,120,623 ||$||105,972 ||$||168,940 ||$||513,574 ||$||1,332,137 |
(1)As described in Note 16 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
(2)Amounts do not include accrued and unpaid interest. Accrued and unpaid interest related to long-term debt obligations is reflected on the line entitled, "Interest payments on long-term debt obligations" in the table.
(3)As described in Note 12 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
(4)Includes agreements to purchase goods or services that are enforceable and legally binding on us and that specify all significant terms, including fixed or minimum quantities to be purchased; fixed, minimum, or variable price provisions; and the approximate timing of the transaction.
(5)Does not include accounts payable reflected in the financial statements. Includes obligations for uncertain tax positions (see Notes 18 to the Consolidated Financial Statements).
Our commercial commitments expire or mature as follows:
| ||(In thousands)|
|Standby financial letters of credit||$||8,486 ||$||7,853 ||$||633 ||$||— ||$||— |
|Bank guarantees||4,071 ||2,738 ||1,333 ||— ||— |
|Surety bonds||3,311 ||3,311 ||— ||— ||— |
|Total||$||15,868 ||$||13,902 ||$||1,966 ||$||— ||$||— |
Standby financial letters of credit, bank guarantees, and surety bonds are generally issued to secure obligations we have for a variety of commercial reasons such as workers compensation self-insurance programs in several states and the importation and exportation of product. We expect to replace most of these when they expire or mature.
Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements
We have no off-balance sheet arrangements that have or are reasonably likely to have a current or future effect on our financial condition, results of operations, or cash flows that are or would be considered material to investors.
Current-Year Adoption of Recent Accounting Pronouncements
Discussion regarding our adoption of accounting pronouncements is included in Note 2 to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
Critical Accounting Estimates
Our consolidated financial statements are prepared in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the U.S. (GAAP). In connection with the preparation of our financial statements, we are required to make assumptions and estimates about future events, and apply judgments that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues, expenses, and the related disclosures. We base our assumptions, estimates, and judgments on historical experience, current trends, and other factors that management believes to be relevant at the time our consolidated financial statements are prepared. On a regular basis, we review the accounting policies, assumptions, estimates, and judgments to ensure that our financial statements are presented fairly and in accordance with GAAP. However, because future events and their effects cannot be determined with certainty, actual results could differ from our assumptions and estimates, and such differences could be material.
Our significant accounting policies are discussed in Note 2 of our Consolidated Financial Statements. We believe that the following accounting estimates are the most critical to aid in fully understanding and evaluating our reported financial results, and they require our most difficult, subjective, or complex judgments, resulting from the need to make estimates about the effect of matters that are inherently uncertain.
We recognize revenue consistent with the principles as outlined in the following five step model: (1) identify the contract with the customer, (2) identify the performance obligations in the contract, (3) determine the transaction price, (4) allocate the transaction price to the performance obligations in the contract, and (5) recognize revenue when (or as) each performance obligation is satisfied. See Note 3.
At the time of sale, we establish an estimated reserve for trade, promotion, and other special price reductions such as contract pricing, discounts to meet competitor pricing, and on-time payment discounts. We also reserve for, among other things, correction of billing errors, incorrect shipments, and settlement of customer disputes. Customers are allowed to return inventory if and when certain conditions regarding the functionality of the inventory and our approval of the return are met. Certain distribution customers are allowed to return inventory at original cost, in an amount not to exceed three percent of the prior year’s purchases, in exchange for an order of equal or greater value. Until we can process these reductions, corrections, and returns (together, the Changes) through individual customer records, we estimate the amount of outstanding Changes and recognize them by reducing revenues. We determine our estimate based on our historical Changes as a percentage of revenues and the average time period between the original sale and the issuance of the Changes. We adjust other current assets and cost of sales for the estimated level of returns.
We base these estimates on historical and anticipated sales demand, trends in product pricing, and historical and anticipated Changes patterns. We make revisions to these estimates in the period in which the facts that give rise to each revision become known. Future market conditions and product transitions might require us to take actions to further reduce prices and increase customer return authorizations. We do not believe there is a reasonable likelihood that there will be a material change in the future estimates or assumptions we use to measure the Changes. However, if actual results are not consistent with our estimates or assumptions, we may be exposed to losses or gains that could be material. A 10% change in our sales reserve for such Changes as of December 31, 2020 would have affected net income by approximately $2 million in 2020.
At times, we enter into arrangements that involve the delivery of multiple promised goods or services. For these arrangements, when the promised goods or services can be separated, the revenue is allocated to each distinct good or service based on that performance obligation’s relative standalone selling price and recognized based upon transfer of control for each performance obligation. Generally, we determine standalone selling price using the adjusted market assessment approach. For software licenses with highly variable standalone selling prices sold with either support or professional services, we generally determine the standalone selling price of the software license using the residual approach.
Revenue allocated to support services under our support contracts is typically recognized ratably over the term of the service. Revenue allocated to distinct professional services is recognized when (or as) the performance obligation is satisfied depending on the terms of the arrangement. When professional services are not distinct from goods, the professional services and goods are combined into one performance obligation, and revenue allocated to that performance obligation is recognized when (or as) the performance obligation is satisfied.
We recognize deferred tax assets resulting from tax credit carryforwards, net operating loss carryforwards, and deductible temporary differences between taxable income on our income tax returns and income before taxes under GAAP. Deferred tax assets generally represent future tax benefits to be received when these carryforwards can be applied against future taxable income or when expenses previously reported in our Consolidated Financial Statements become deductible for income tax purposes. A deferred tax asset valuation allowance is required when some portion or all of the deferred tax assets may not be realized. We are required to estimate taxable income in future years or develop tax strategies that would enable tax asset realization in each taxing jurisdiction and use judgment to determine whether to record a deferred tax asset valuation allowance for part or all of a deferred tax asset.
We consider the weight of all available evidence, both positive and negative, in assessing the realizability of the deferred tax assets associated with net operating losses. We consider the reversals of existing taxable temporary differences as well as projections of future taxable income. We consider the future reversals of existing taxable temporary differences to the extent they were of the same character as the temporary differences giving rise to the deferred tax assets. We also consider whether the future reversals of existing taxable temporary differences will occur in the same period and jurisdiction as the temporary differences giving rise to the deferred tax assets. The assumptions utilized to estimate our future taxable income are consistent with those assumptions utilized for purposes of testing goodwill for impairment, as well as with our budgeting and strategic planning processes.
Significant judgment is required in evaluating our uncertain tax positions. We establish accruals for uncertain tax positions when we believe that the full amount of the associated tax benefit may not be realized. In the future, if we prevail in matters for which accruals have been established previously or pay amounts in excess of reserves, there could be a material effect on our income tax provisions in the period in which such determination is made.
In December 2019, the FASB issued ASU 2019-12, Income Taxes (Topic 740) Simplifying the Accounting for Income Taxes (“ASU 2019-12”) which removes certain exceptions for investments, intraperiod allocations and interim tax calculations, and adds guidance to reduce the complexity in accounting for income taxes. ASU 2019-12 is effective for annual periods beginning after December 15, 2020, with early adoption permitted. The various amendments in ASU 2019-12 are applied on a retrospective basis, modified retrospective basis and prospective basis, depending upon the amendment. The Company did not early adopt this pronouncement and is in the process of evaluating the impact of this amendment on our consolidated financial statements; however, it is not anticipated to be material.
See Note 18, Income Taxes, to the consolidated financial statements for further information regarding income taxes.
Goodwill and Indefinite-Lived Intangible Assets
We test our goodwill and other indefinite-lived intangible assets not subject to amortization for impairment on an annual basis during the fourth quarter or when indicators of impairment exist. We base our estimates on assumptions we believe to be reasonable, but which are not predictable with precision and therefore are inherently uncertain. Actual future results could differ from these estimates.
We test goodwill annually for impairment at the reporting unit level. A reporting unit is an operating segment, or a business unit one level below an operating segment if discrete financial information for that business is prepared and regularly reviewed by segment management. However, components within an operating segment are aggregated as a single reporting unit if they have similar economic characteristics. We determined that each of our reportable segments (Enterprise Solutions and Industrial Solutions) represents an operating segment. Within those operating segments, we have identified reporting units based on whether there is discrete financial information prepared that is regularly reviewed by segment management. As a result of this evaluation, we have identified from our continuing operations, three reporting units within Enterprise Solutions and seven reporting units within Industrial Solutions for purposes of goodwill impairment testing.
The accounting guidance related to goodwill impairment testing allows for the performance of an optional qualitative assessment of whether it is more likely than not that the fair value of a reporting unit is less than its carrying value. Such an evaluation is made based on the weight of all available evidence and the significance of all identified events and circumstances that may influence the fair value of a reporting unit. If it is more likely than not that the fair value is less than the carrying value, then a quantitative assessment is required for the reporting unit, as described in the paragraph below. In 2020, we did not perform a qualitative assessment over any of our reporting units.
When we evaluate goodwill for impairment using a quantitative assessment, we compare the fair value of each reporting unit to its carrying value. We determine the fair value using an income approach. Under the income approach, we calculate the fair value of a reporting unit based on the present value of estimated future cash flows using growth rates and discount rates that are consistent with current market conditions in our industry. If the fair value of the reporting unit exceeds the carrying value of the net assets including goodwill assigned to that unit, goodwill is not impaired. If the carrying value of the reporting unit’s net assets including goodwill exceeds the fair value of the reporting unit, then we record an impairment charge based on that difference. In addition to the income approach, we calculate the fair value of our reporting units under a market approach. The market approach measures the fair value of a reporting unit through analysis of financial multiples of comparable businesses. Consideration is given to the financial conditions and operating performance of the reporting unit being valued relative to those publicly-traded companies operating in the same or similar lines of business.
For our annual impairment test in 2020, we performed a quantitative assessment for all ten of our reporting units included in continuing operations, none of which proved to be impaired during 2020. Based on our annual goodwill impairment test, the excess of the fair values over the carrying values of our ten reporting units tested under a quantitative income approach ranged from 4% - 345%. The assumptions used to estimate fair values were based on the past performance of the reporting unit as well as the projections incorporated in our strategic plan. Significant assumptions included sales growth, profitability, and related cash flows, along with cash flows associated with taxes and capital spending. The discount rate used to estimate fair value was risk adjusted in consideration of the economic conditions in effect at the time of the impairment test. We also considered assumptions that market participants may use. In our quantitative assessments, the discount rates ranged from 10.0% to 12.2%, the 2021 to 2030 compounded annual revenue growth rates ranged from 2.5% to 5.8%, and the revenue growth rates beyond 2030 ranged from 2.0% to 3.0%. By their nature, these assumptions involve risks and uncertainties. Furthermore, uncertainties associated with current market conditions increase the inherent risk associated with using an income approach to estimate fair values. While we have adjusted our key assumptions to reflect the current economic conditions, we have also assumed that economic conditions will improve. If current conditions persist and actual results are different from our estimates or assumptions, we may have to recognize an impairment charge that could be material.
We test our indefinite-lived intangible assets, which consist primarily of trademarks, for impairment on an annual basis during the fourth quarter. The accounting guidance related to impairment testing for such intangible assets allows for the performance of an optional qualitative assessment, similar to that described above for goodwill. We did not perform any qualitative assessments as part of our indefinite-lived intangible asset impairment testing for 2020. Rather, we performed a quantitative assessment for each of our indefinite-lived trademarks in 2020. Under the quantitative assessments, we determined the fair value of each trademark using a relief from royalty methodology and compared the fair value to the carrying value. We determined that none of our trademarks were impaired during 2020. Significant assumptions to determine fair value included sales growth, royalty rates, and discount rates.
As noted above, we also test our goodwill and other indefinite-lived intangible assets not subject to amortization for impairment when indicators of impairment exist. Due to its overall financial performance and discontinued operations classification, we performed impairment tests on the Grass Valley disposal group which resulted in total asset impairments of $113.0 million in 2020. We completed the sale of Grass Valley to Black Dragon Capital on July 2, 2020. The operating results of Grass Valley are not included in our Consolidated Financial Statements after the July 2, 2020 disposal date. As of December 31, 2020, we do not own any interest in Grass Valley. See Note 5.
Pension and Other Postretirement Benefits
Our pension and other postretirement benefit costs and obligations are dependent on the various actuarial assumptions used in calculating such amounts. These assumptions relate to discount rates, salary growth, long-term return on plan assets, health care cost trend rates, mortality tables, and other factors. We base the discount rate assumptions on current investment yields on high-quality corporate long-term bonds. The salary growth assumptions reflect our long-term actual experience and future or near-term outlook. Long-term return on plan assets is determined based on historical portfolio results and management’s expectation of the future economic environment. Our health care cost trend assumptions are developed based on historical cost data, the near-term outlook, and an assessment of likely long-term trends. Our key assumptions are described in further detail in Note 18 to the Consolidated Financial Statements. Actual results that differ from our assumptions are accumulated and, if in excess of the lesser of 10% of the projected benefit obligation or the fair market value of plan assets, amortized over the estimated future working life of the plan participants.
As a sensitivity measure, the effect of a 50 basis point decline in the assumed discount rate would have resulted in an increase in the 2020 net periodic benefit cost and projected benefit obligations as of December 31, 2020 of approximately $0.7 million and $41.4 million, respectively. A 50 basis point decline in the expected return on plan assets would have resulted in an increase in the 2020 net periodic benefit cost of approximately $1.7 million.
Conversely, the effect of a 50 basis point increase in the assumed discount rate would have resulted in an increase in the 2020 net periodic benefit cost of approximately $0.1 million and a decrease in the projected benefit obligation of approximately $36.6 million as of December 31, 2020. A 50 basis point increase in the expected return on plan assets would have resulted in a decrease in the 2020 net periodic benefit cost of approximately $1.7 million.
Business Combination Accounting
We allocate the consideration of an acquired business to its identifiable assets and liabilities based on estimated fair values. The excess of the consideration over the amount allocated to the assets and liabilities, if any, is recorded to goodwill. We use all available information to estimate fair values. We typically engage third party valuation specialists to assist in the fair value determination of inventories, tangible long-lived assets, and intangible assets other than goodwill. The carrying values of acquired receivables and accounts payable have historically approximated their fair values as of the business combination date. As necessary, we may engage third party specialists to assist in the estimation of fair value for certain liabilities. We adjust the preliminary acquisition accounting, as necessary, typically up to one year after the acquisition closing date as we obtain more information regarding asset valuations and liabilities assumed.
Our acquisition accounting methodology contains uncertainties because it requires management to make assumptions and to apply judgment to estimate the fair value of acquired assets and liabilities. Management estimates the fair value of assets and liabilities based upon quoted market prices, the carrying value of the acquired assets and widely accepted valuation techniques, including discounted cash flows and market multiple analyses. Unanticipated events or circumstances may occur which could affect the accuracy of our fair value estimates, including assumptions regarding industry economic factors and business strategies.
If actual results are materially different than the assumptions we used to determine fair value of the assets and liabilities acquired through a business combination, it is possible that adjustments to the carrying values of such assets and liabilities will have an impact on our net earnings.
See Note 4 to the Consolidated Financial Statements for the acquisition-related information associated with significant acquisitions completed in the last three fiscal years.
Item 7A. Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
Market risks relating to our operations result primarily from currency exchange rates, certain commodity prices, interest rates, and credit extended to customers. Each of these risks is discussed below.
Currency Exchange Rate Risk
We are exposed to foreign currency risks that arise from normal business operations. These risks include the translation of local currency balances of foreign subsidiaries and transactions denominated in currencies other than a location’s functional currency.
Our investments in certain foreign subsidiaries are recorded in currencies other than the U.S. dollar. As these foreign currency denominated investments are translated at the end of each period during consolidation using period-end exchange rates, fluctuations of exchange rates between the foreign currency and the U.S. dollar increase or decrease the value of those investments. These fluctuations and the results of operations for foreign subsidiaries, where the functional currency is not the U.S. dollar, are translated into U.S. dollars using the average exchange rates during the year, while the assets and liabilities are translated using period end exchange rates. The assets and liabilities-related translation adjustments are recorded as a separate component of accumulated other comprehensive income (loss) in our Consolidated Balance Sheets. We generally view our investments in international subsidiaries with functional currencies other than the U.S. dollar as long-term. As a result, we do not generally use derivatives to manage these net investments. However, we designated euro debt issued in 2018, 2017 and 2016 by Belden Inc., a USD functional currency entity, as a net investment hedge of certain international subsidiaries. See Note 16 for further discussion.
Transactions denominated in currencies other than a location’s functional currency may produce receivables or payables that are fixed in terms of the amount of foreign currency that will be received or paid. A change in exchange rates between the functional currency and the currency in which a transaction is denominated increases or decreases the expected amount of functional currency cash flows upon settlement of the transaction. That increase or decrease in expected functional currency cash flows is a foreign exchange transaction gain or loss that is included in our operating income in the Consolidated Statements of Operations. In 2020, we recorded approximately $7.9 million of net foreign currency transaction gains. In 2019, we recorded approximately $1.5 million of net foreign currency transaction losses.
Generally, the currency in which we sell our products is the same as the currency in which we incur the costs to manufacture our products, resulting in a natural hedge. Our currency exchange rate management strategy primarily involves the use of natural techniques, where possible, such as the offsetting or netting of like-currency cash flows. However, we re-evaluate our strategy as the foreign currency environment changes, and it is possible that we could utilize derivative financial instruments to manage this risk in the future. We did not have any foreign currency derivatives outstanding as of December 31, 2020.
Our exposure to currency rate fluctuations primarily relates to exchange rate movements between the U.S. dollar and the euro, Canadian dollar, Hong Kong dollar, Chinese yuan, Mexican peso, Australian dollar, British pound, Indian rupee, and Brazilian real.
Commodity Price Risk
Certain raw materials used by us are subject to price volatility caused by supply conditions, political and economic variables, and other unpredictable factors. The primary purpose of our commodity price management activities is to manage the volatility associated with purchases of commodities in the normal course of business. We do not speculate on commodity prices.
We are exposed to price risk related to our purchase of copper used in our products, although we are generally able to raise selling prices to customers to cover the increase in copper costs. Our copper price management strategy involves the use of natural techniques, where possible, such as purchasing copper for future delivery at fixed prices. We do not generally use commodity price derivatives and did not have any outstanding at December 31, 2020 or 2019.
The following table presents unconditional commodity purchase obligations outstanding as of December 31, 2020. The unconditional purchase obligations will settle during 2021.
| ||(In thousands, except average price)|
|Unconditional copper purchase obligations:|
|Commitment volume in pounds||1,910 |
|Weighted average price per pound||$||3.16 |
|Commitment amounts||$||6,036 ||$||6,711 |
We are also exposed to price risk related to our purchase of selected commodities derived from petrochemical feedstocks used in our products. We generally purchase these commodities based upon market prices established with the vendors as part of the purchase process. Pricing of these commodities is volatile as they tend to fluctuate with the price of oil. Historically, we have not used commodity financial instruments to hedge prices for commodities derived from petrochemical feedstocks.
Interest Rate Risk
We have occasionally managed our debt portfolio by using interest rate derivative instruments, such as swap agreements, to achieve an overall desired position of fixed and floating rates. We were not a party to any interest rate derivative instruments as of or for the years ended December 31, 2020 or 2019.
The following table provides information about our financial instruments that are sensitive to changes in interest rates. The table presents principal amounts by expected maturity dates and fair values as of December 31, 2020.
| ||Principal Amount by Expected Maturity||Fair|
| ||(In thousands, except interest rates)|
|€350.0 million fixed-rate senior subordinated notes due 2028||$||— ||$||428,295 ||$||428,295 ||$||446,720 |
|Average interest rate||3.875 ||%|
|€450.0 million fixed-rate senior subordinated notes due 2027||$||— ||$||550,665 ||$||550,665 ||$||564,426 |
|Average interest rate||3.375 ||%|
|€200.0 million fixed-rate senior subordinated notes due 2026||$||— ||$||244,740 ||$||244,740 ||$||252,672 |
|Average interest rate||4.125 ||%|
|€300.0 million fixed-rate senior subordinated notes due 2025||$||— ||$||367,110 ||$||367,110 ||$||369,926 |
|Average interest rate||2.875 ||%|
|Total||$||1,590,810 ||$||1,633,744 |
Concentrations of Credit Risk
Financial instruments that potentially subject us to significant concentrations of credit risk consist of cash and cash equivalents and accounts receivable. We are exposed to credit losses in the event of nonperformance by counterparties to these financial instruments. We place cash and cash equivalents with various high-quality financial institutions throughout the world, and exposure is limited at any one financial institution. Although we do not obtain collateral or other security to support these financial instruments, we evaluate the credit standing of the counterparty financial institutions. As of December 31, 2020, we had $17.5 million in accounts receivable outstanding from WESCO. This represented approximately 6% of our total accounts receivable outstanding at December 31, 2020. WESCO generally pays all outstanding receivables within thirty to sixty days of invoice receipt.
Item 8. Financial Statements and Supplementary Data
Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm
To the Stockholders and the Board of Directors of Belden Inc.
Opinion on the Financial Statements
We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheets of Belden Inc. (the Company) as of December 31, 2020 and 2019, and the related consolidated statements of operations, comprehensive income, stockholders' equity and cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended December 31, 2020, and the related notes and the financial statement schedule listed in the Index at Item 15(a) (collectively referred to as the “consolidated financial statements”). In our opinion, the consolidated financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Company at December 31, 2020 and 2019, and the results of its operations and its cash flows for each of the three years in the period ended December 31, 2020, in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.
We also have audited, in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (PCAOB), the Company's internal control over financial reporting as of December 31, 2020, based on criteria established in Internal Control-Integrated Framework issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission 2013 framework and our report dated February 16, 2021 expressed an unqualified opinion thereon.
Basis for Opinion
These financial statements are the responsibility of the Company's management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company’s financial statements based on our audits. We are a public accounting firm registered with the PCAOB and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.
We conducted our audits in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements are free of material misstatement, whether due to error or fraud. Our audits included performing procedures to assess the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements, whether due to error or fraud, and performing procedures that respond to those risks. Such procedures included examining, on a test basis, evidence regarding the amounts and disclosures in the financial statements. Our audits also included evaluating the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the financial statements. We believe that our audits provide a reasonable basis for our opinion.
Critical Audit Matters
The critical audit matters communicated below are matters arising from the current period audit of the financial statements that were communicated or required to be communicated to the audit committee and that: (1) relate to accounts or disclosures that are material to the financial statements and (2) involved our especially challenging, subjective or complex judgments. The communication of critical audit matters does not alter in any way our opinion on the consolidated financial statements, taken as a whole, and we are not, by communicating the critical audit matters below, providing separate opinions on the critical audit matters or on the accounts or disclosures to which they relate.
|Valuation of Goodwill for Certain Reporting Units|
|Description of the Matter|
At December 31, 2020, the Company had goodwill on its balance sheet aggregating $1.3 billion. As more fully described in Notes 2 and 12 to the Company’s consolidated financial statements, goodwill is tested for impairment at least annually at the reporting unit level. The Company’s goodwill is initially assigned to reporting units as of the respective acquisition dates. The Company performed a quantitative assessment for all of its reporting units and determined that the fair values of these reporting units were in excess of the carrying values. Therefore, the Company did not record any goodwill impairment for any of its reporting units.
Auditing the Company’s annual goodwill impairment test for certain reporting units under the quantitative assessment was complex due to the judgments and estimation required in determining the fair values of the reporting units. In particular, the fair value estimates are sensitive to significant assumptions such as discount rates, revenue growth rates, projected operating margins, and terminal growth rates, which are sensitive to and affected by expectations about future market or economic conditions and company-specific qualitative factors.
|How We Addressed the Matter in Our Audit|
We obtained an understanding, evaluated the design and tested the operating effectiveness of controls over the Company’s preparation and review of the goodwill impairment tests, significant assumptions discussed above, as used in each of the models, and the completeness and accuracy of the data used in the models.
Our audit procedures included, among others, involving our specialists to assist us in assessing methodologies, and testing the significant assumptions discussed above and the underlying data used by the Company in its analyses, and reviewing the methodology and market support used to determine the discount rate. We compared the significant assumptions used by the Company to current industry and future economic trends, changes to the Company’s business model, customer base or product mix and other relevant factors. We assessed the historical accuracy of the Company’s estimates and performed sensitivity analyses of significant assumptions to evaluate the changes in the fair values of the reporting units that would result from changes in the assumptions. We tested the Company’s reconciliation of the aggregate fair value of the reporting units to the market capitalization of the Company. We also evaluated whether any changes in the composition of the reporting units reflected significant changes in the organizational structure or segments.
|Revenue recognition - allocating consideration to performance obligations and estimating variable consideration|
|Description of the Matter|
As described in Notes 2 and 3 to the consolidated financial statements, the Company has contractual arrangements that include software, support, and service revenues. The Company estimated the selling prices of those contractual arrangements to determine the allocation of consideration to each of the performance obligations. The objective was to determine the price at which the Company would transact a sale if the product, support or service was sold on a standalone basis. Generally, the Company determines standalone selling price using the adjusted market assessment approach. For software licenses with highly variable standalone selling prices sold with either support or professional services, the Company generally determines the standalone selling price of the software license using the residual approach. The Company estimated the standalone selling prices of each of the performance obligations and projected cash flows over the term of each contractual arrangement to determine the amount of total consideration allocated to each of the performance obligations. The Company also enters into sales contracts that provide certain distributors with price concessions, product return rights, refunds, and stock rotations, which all result in variable consideration. At the time of sale, the Company establishes an estimated reserve for the variable consideration and recognizes it by reducing revenues. Estimates are based on a percentage of revenues and the average time period between the original sale and the issuance of the adjustments. As of December 31, 2020, the Company recorded $25.5 million in unprocessed changes that were recognized as a reduction of revenues and accounts receivable and $13.0 million in unprocessed changes recognized as accrued liabilities.
|Auditing the Company’s allocation of consideration expected to be received under its contractual arrangements was complex and involved a high degree of subjective auditor judgment because of the management judgment required to develop the estimates of standalone selling prices for the highly variable pricing of software licenses. Auditing the Company's measurement of variable consideration under the distributor contracts involved especially challenging judgment because the calculation involves subjective management assumptions, including historical adjustments as a percentage of revenues and the estimated period of time between the original sale and the issuance of the adjustment, all used in the estimates of unprocessed changes and pricing concessions. The estimates developed by the Company are also dependent on anticipated sales demand, trends in product pricing, and historical and anticipated adjustment patterns. |
|How We Addressed the Matter in Our Audit|
We obtained an understanding, evaluated the design and tested the operating effectiveness of controls over the Company's processes to determine the estimated standalone selling price of each of the performance obligations, the allocation of total consideration to be received over the contractual term to all performance obligations based on their relative standalone selling price and to calculate the variable consideration, including the process to determine and evaluate the underlying assumptions about estimates of expected unprocessed changes and pricing concessions.
We performed audit procedures related to the estimated standalone selling prices and allocation to the performance obligations over the term of the contractual arrangement, including the following, among others. To test the calculation of the amount of consideration allocated to each performance obligation, we evaluated the accuracy and completeness of the underlying data used in the Company’s calculation of the ranges of each standalone selling price and recalculated the established range for the standalone selling price used. We analyzed transaction level detail, such as invoices and price lists, to test that, if necessary, the transaction price was reallocated to bring the amount allocated to the performance obligation within the established range. We evaluated the appropriateness of the methodology used to determine the standalone selling price by comparing such prices to historical analysis and practices observed in the industry. In addition, we performed detailed testing of the underlying transactions in the calculation by agreeing the amounts recognized to source documents and performed an analysis to recalculate the allocation of revenue between performance obligations as part of our overall testing of revenue transactions. Our audit procedures related to the Company’s estimates of variable consideration included, among others, evaluating the significant assumptions and the accuracy and completeness of the underlying data used in the Company's calculation. This included testing the Company's estimate of historical adjustments as a percentage of revenues and the average time period between the original sale and the issuance of the adjustment memo. In addition, we inspected the results of the Company's retrospective review of adjustments reserved compared to actual adjustments issued, evaluated the estimates made based on historical experience and performed sensitivity analyses to evaluate the changes in variable consideration that would result from changes in the Company's significant assumptions.
/s/ Ernst & Young LLP
We have served as the Company’s auditor since 1993.
St. Louis, Missouri
February 16, 2021
Consolidated Balance Sheets
| ||December 31,|
| ||(In thousands, except par value)|
|Cash and cash equivalents||$||501,994 ||$||407,480 |
|Receivables, net||296,817 ||334,634 |
|Inventories, net||247,298 ||231,333 |
|Other current assets||52,289 ||29,172 |
|Current assets of discontinued operations||— ||375,135 |
|Total current assets||1,098,398 ||1,377,754 |
|Property, plant and equipment, less accumulated depreciation||368,620 ||345,918 |
|Operating lease right-of-use assets||54,787 ||62,251 |
|Goodwill||1,251,938 ||1,243,669 |
|Intangible assets, less accumulated amortization||287,071 ||339,505 |
|Deferred income taxes||29,536 ||25,216 |
|Other long-lived assets||49,384 ||12,446 |
|$||3,139,734 ||$||3,406,759 |
|LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS’ EQUITY|
|Accounts payable||$||244,120 ||$||268,466 |
|Accrued liabilities||276,641 ||283,799 |
|Current liabilities of discontinued operations||— ||170,279 |
|Total current liabilities||520,761 ||722,544 |
|Long-term debt||1,573,726 ||1,439,484 |
|Postretirement benefits||160,400 ||136,227 |
|Deferred income taxes||38,400 ||48,725 |
|Long-term operating lease liabilities||46,398 ||55,652 |
|Other long-term liabilities||42,998 ||38,308 |
Common stock, par value $0.01 per share— 200,000 shares authorized; 50,335 shares issued; 44,643 and 45,458 shares outstanding at 2020 and 2019, respectively
|503 ||503 |
|Additional paid-in capital||823,605 ||811,955 |
|Retained earnings||450,876 ||518,004 |
|Accumulated other comprehensive loss||(191,851)||(63,418)|
Treasury stock, at cost— 5,692 and 4,877 shares at 2020 and 2019, respectively
|Total Belden stockholders’ equity||750,581 ||959,847 |
|Noncontrolling interest||6,470 ||5,972 |
|Total stockholders’ equity||757,051 ||965,819 |
|$||3,139,734 ||$||3,406,759 |
The accompanying notes are an integral part of these Consolidated Financial Statements.
Consolidated Statements of Operations
| ||Years Ended December 31,|
| ||(In thousands, except per share amounts)|
|Revenues||$||1,862,716 ||$||2,131,278 ||$||2,165,702 |
|Cost of sales||(1,199,427)||(1,337,773)||(1,335,791)|
|Gross profit||663,289 ||793,505 ||829,911 |
|Selling, general and administrative expenses||(366,188)||(417,329)||(411,352)|
|Research and development expenses||(107,296)||(94,360)||(91,552)|
|Amortization of intangibles||(64,395)||(74,609)||(75,140)|
|Gain from patent litigation||— ||— ||62,141 |
|Operating income||125,410 ||207,207 ||314,008 |
|Interest expense, net||(58,888)||(55,814)||(60,839)|
|Non-operating pension benefit (cost)||(395)||1,017 ||(99)|
|Loss on debt extinguishment||— ||— ||(22,990)|
|Income from continuing operations before taxes||66,127 ||152,410 ||230,080 |
|Income tax expense||(11,724)||(42,519)||(62,936)|
|Income from continuing operations||54,403 ||109,891 ||167,144 |
|Loss from discontinued operations, net of tax||(99,513)||(486,667)||(6,433)|
|Loss from disposal of discontinued operations, net of tax||(9,948)||— ||— |
|Net income (loss)|