Columbia Sportswear Company announced record first quarter net sales of $206.7 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2004, an increase of 22.4% over net sales of $168.9 million for the same period of 2003. The Company reported record net income for the first quarter of $20.0 million, a 34.2% increase over net income of $14.9 million for the same period of 2003. Earnings per share for the first quarter of 2004 were 49 cents (diluted) on 41.0 million weighted average shares, compared to earnings per share of 37 cents(diluted) for the first quarter of 2003 on 40.4 million weighted average shares.

Compared to the first quarter of 2003, U.S. sales increased 15.8 percent to $115.3 million, European sales increased 33.2 percent to $42.9 million, Other International sales increased 37.4 percent to $26.1 million, and Canadian sales increased 23.8 percent to $22.4 million for the first quarter of 2004.

Excluding changes in currency exchange rates, Other International sales increased 31.9 percent, European sales increased 14.5 percent, and Canadian sales increased 8.2 percent for the first quarter of 2004. Consolidated net sales for the first quarter of 2004 increased 16.5 percent, excluding changes in currency exchange rates, compared to the same period of last year.

Sportswear sales increased 19.6 percent to $117.0 million, outerwear sales increased 12.2 percent to $40.4 million, footwear sales increased 29.3 percent to $38.4 million, and accessories sales increased 51.9 percent to $8.2 million, compared to the first quarter of 2003. Mountain Hardwear, acquired on March 31, 2003, contributed $9.7 million in sales for the first quarter, including $2.7 million of equipment sales, a new category for Columbia Sportswear.

Tim Boyle, Columbia's president and chief executive officer, commented, “Columbia again delivered strong sales and operational performance in the first quarter, driven by accelerating demand for our spring related sportswear and footwear products. Our strategies for developing our sportswear and footwear product categories are working well as the spring business at Columbia is now providing a material contribution to the overall profitability of the Company. During the quarter, operating margins expanded to record first quarter levels, demonstrating the strong financial leverage in the organization. Sourcing and operational strengths, combined with foreign currency benefits, contributed to operating leverage and record first quarter earnings.”


The Company reported that as of March 31, 2004, consolidated backlog increased 14.3 percent to $777.3 million compared to consolidated backlog of $680.1 million at March 31, 2003. Of this total, fall product backlog at March 31, 2004 was $664.0 million, an increase of 12.7 percent when compared to fall product backlog of $589.4 million at March 31, 2003. Excluding changes in currency exchange rates, consolidated backlog increased 10.4 percent, and fall product backlog increased 8.9 percent, when compared to the prior year. Due to the timing of the acquisition last year, Mountain Hardwear's backlog was not included in prior year reported backlog results. To provide comparability on current year backlog and future revenue growth, fall backlog at March 31, 2003 has been increased to include $17.7 million in Mountain Hardwear orders that existed in the prior year comparative period.

Boyle continued, “We are pleased with our exceptional fall future orders backlog growth, particularly with fall backlog growth in the United States. Growth in fall backlog was led by continued momentum in our sportswear and footwear categories, particularly in the U.S. Global outerwear backlog was also healthy, driven by strong outerwear demand in Europe and Other International markets. We believe that the consistent execution of our strategies, combined with our balance sheet strength, position us well for continued strong growth.”


Mr. Boyle continued, “Based on our current outlook and the backlog we released today, we currently believe that our strategies will enable us to generate second quarter 2004 revenue growth of 8 to 10 percent with net income flat when compared to the second quarter of 2003. For the full year 2004, we anticipate net sales growth of 11 to 12 percent, and net income growth of approximately 10 percent, compared to 2003. These projections are forward-looking in nature, and are based on backlog and forecasts, which may change, perhaps significantly.”

Stock Repurchase

The board of directors of Columbia Sportswear has authorized the repurchase of up to $100 million of Columbia common stock. The repurchase program does not obligate the Company to acquire any specific number of shares or acquire shares over any specified period of time.

                            (In thousands)

                                                        March 31,
                                                     2004      2003
                                                    --------  --------
 Current Assets:
   Cash and cash equivalents                       $288,059  $179,197
   Accounts receivable, net                         169,972   130,156
   Inventories                                      128,077   115,759
   Deferred tax asset                                17,183    10,884
   Prepaid expenses and other current assets          6,889     4,456
                                                    --------  --------
       Total current assets                         610,180   440,452

 Property, plant and equipment, net                 131,238   122,557
 Intangibles and other assets                        37,656    36,369
                                                    --------  --------
       Total assets                                $779,074  $599,378
                                                    ========  ========

 Current Liabilities:
   Notes payable                                   $      -  $  9,928
   Accounts payable                                  40,082    37,781
   Accrued liabilities                               43,322    25,590
   Current portion of long-term debt                  4,625     4,502
                                                    --------  --------
       Total current liabilities                     88,029    77,801

 Long-term debt                                      15,867    20,183
 Deferred tax liability                               8,503     7,104
 Shareholders' equity                               666,675   494,290
                                                    --------  --------
       Total liabilities and shareholders' equity  $779,074  $599,378
                                                    ========  ========

               (In thousands, except per share amounts)

                                                   Three Months Ended
                                                        March 31,
                                                     2004      2003
                                                    --------  --------

Net sales                                          $206,670  $168,871
Cost of sales                                       112,787    92,127
                                                    --------  --------
  Gross profit                                       93,883    76,744
                                                       45.4%     45.4%

Selling, general, and administrative                 64,529    53,161
Net licensing income                                   (697)     (105)
                                                    --------  --------
Income from operations                               30,051    23,688

Interest (income) expense, net                         (898)     (183)
                                                    --------  --------
Income before income tax                             30,949    23,871

Income tax provision                                 10,987     8,952
                                                    --------  --------
Net income                                         $ 19,962  $ 14,919
                                                    ========  ========

Net income per share:
  Basic                                            $   0.50  $   0.38
  Diluted                                              0.49      0.37
Weighted average shares outstanding:
  Basic                                              40,318    39,768
  Diluted                                            40,996    40,399