Jarden Corporation, the parent company to Coleman, reported strong sales and earnings growth for the second quarter of 2006. Sales increased 28% to $962 million compared to $754 million in the previous year. Martin Franklin, president and CEO of Jarden, attributed the top-line growth to strong organic sales increases and capturing more market share through many of the company’s brands. Jarden believes comparable sales growth, excluding product extensions and tuck-in acquisitions, was roughly 10%. Net income was $13.3 million, or 20 cents per diluted share, compared to $5.7 million, or 12 cents per diluted share last year.

Coleman contributed $331.9 million to net sales for the quarter, or 34.5% of total sales, compared to $298.6 million, or 39.6% of total sales last year, a top-line increase of 11.2%. The brand reported $44.1 in operating earnings, an increase of 8.4% compared to operating earnings of $40.7 million last year. Management said that the strong top-line performance was due to incremental sales to two large customers in coordination with the company’s focus on hurricane preparedness as well as steady performance in Coleman’s domestic business. The profitability of the Outdoor Solutions segment continued to be negatively impacted by foreign exchange fluctuations and raw material cost increases.

With the busiest season over, Coleman management is looking to next year. During 2005, the company worked with a “major national retail chain” and tested an in-store merchandising strategy. On a year-over-year comp basis, camping sales at these retail locations grew by over 100% while increasing retailer and Coleman margins. The chain plans to expand the test to 40 stores later this year.

In addition, Coleman launched a new Marine initiative at the Marine Aftermarket Accessories Trade Show. This is a market where management feels that the Coleman brand “plays extremely well,” but has little historical presence.

Jarden is investing heavily in Coleman’s infrastructure, brand, and new product developments in order to get the company to sustainable double-digit EBITDA margins. As part of this investment, Coleman is hosting a dealer and media event to be held in Park City, Utah, where representatives from every element of Coleman’s customer base will attend during a multi-day official launch of the brand’s 2007 program.

The company is anticipating that Outdoor Solutions full-year revenue will be up over 5% and adjusted EBITDA will be marginally higher compared to 2005.

Finally, Jarden is looking for acquisitions once again. Having not completed a deal in over a year, the company is focusing on finding an acquisition target with over 15% EBITDA margins, strong cash flows, and a niche market. The company is looking particularly for a company that would fit in with its Outdoor Solutions Segment or its Branded Consumables segment.

“As you know, we dont really talk specifics until they are completed, but we have been pretty active. I wouldnt say anything dramatically large,” said Mr Franklin. “Even a couple of hundred million dollar deal does not move the needle that much. What were looking to do is bolster our business’ base that strengthens the businesses we currently have in the portfolio — that is the focus. Were not looking to create a new platform, were looking to make the businesses that we have stronger and more profitable.”