A. O. Smith Corporation announces 27 percent dividend increase

Milwaukee, Wis.— Directors of A. O. Smith Corporation (NYSE:AOS) today approved a 27 percent increase in the company’s quarterly cash dividend to $.19 per share.  

The dividend increase will affect the company’s Common Stock and Class A Common Stock and is payable on Feb. 17 to shareholders of record Feb. 6.   

This represents the 4th consecutive year the Milwaukee-based water technology company has increased its quarterly cash dividend 20 percent or more.

“A. O. Smith experienced solid, profitable growth in North America and China in 2014,” Ajita G. Rajendra, chairman and chief executive officer, said. “As demonstrated again, in 2014, we believe our operations have the ability to generate the cash needed to support our global growth initiatives. Our balance sheet remains in excellent condition as well, giving us the ability to support this latest dividend increase.”

“With the cash we have on hand and the borrowing capacity in place, we can continue to pursue our strategic growth plan and respond to any acquisition opportunities that present themselves.”

Forward-looking statements
This release contains statements that the company believes are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Forward-looking statements generally can be identified by the use of words such as “may,” “will,” “expect,” “intend,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “forecast,” “guidance,” or words of similar meaning.  These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated as of the date of this release.  Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from these expectations include, among other things, the following: uncertain operating inefficiencies, costs and effects of pricing actions associated with the implementation of the update to the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act (NAECA III) energy efficiency standard; uncertain costs, savings and timeframes associated with the implementation of the new Enterprise Resource Planning system; potential weakening in the high efficiency boiler segment in the U. S.; the ability to execute our acquisition strategy; significant volatility in raw material prices; competitive pressures on the company’s businesses; inability to implement pricing actions; instability in the company’s replacement markets; strength or duration of any recoveries in U. S. residential or commercial construction; a slowdown in the Chinese economy; foreign currency fluctuations;  and adverse general economic conditions and capital market deterioration. Forward-looking statements included in this press release are made only as of the date of this release, and the company is under no obligation to update these statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.  All subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements attributed to the company, or persons acting on its behalf, are qualified entirely by these cautionary statements.