Saratoga’s Espey Manufacturing names new CEO

A local defense contractor has a new chief executive officer at the helm.

A local defense contractor has a new chief executive officer at the helm.

Mark St. Pierre, 51, was announced as the CEO of Saratoga Springs-based Espey Manufacturing & Electronics on Tuesday, replacing Howard Pinsley, who retired at the end of February. Pinsley will continue as the company’s chairman but will have a non-executive officer role, Espey said.

The Espey board of directors also elected St. Pierre to be a director of the company.

St. Pierre became president of Espey in July.

He was vice president and director of the merchant market segment at ITT Power Solutions in West Springfield, Mass., prior to joining the company. At ITT, St. Pierre managed and developed a business unit that grew its sales to major defense contractors and makers of analytical instruments. Before working at ITT, he held other positions in the power supply and electronics industry over a 20-year period.

Espey is a supplier to the defense industry, developing, designing and producing specialized military and industrial equipment.

Seventy-five percent of its business comes from military defense contracts.

“The company has done very well in the past by staying in markets that are largely immune to typical recession forces,” St. Pierre said. “A combination of that and deliberate strategy to stay out of cyclical businesses has proven to be a good stabilizer as is evident by the financial performance of the company. We have no plans to make any significant changes to that.”

During the second quarter, net sales decreased about 5 percent to $5.9 million compared with the second quarter of fiscal year 2009 due to a timing dip between expected and renewals of orders for defense contracts that usually come in lumps, St. Pierre told The Gazette.

“We expect it to recover to normal levels,” he said.

Espey’s net income was $514,171 in the second quarter of fiscal year 2010, recovering from a net loss of $42,412 a year earlier during the same period.

The company said from July 1 to Dec. 31 of last year, the first six months of its fiscal year 2010, net sales increased to $12.7 million, $500,000 more than a year prior.

Net income increased to $1.5 million during the six-month period, up from $355,884 the previous fiscal year.

At the end of 2009, the sales order backlog was $33.9 million, down from the previous year’s $44 million.

New sales orders during the first half of fiscal 2010, from July to December of last year, were $7.6 million, down from the previous period’s $11.5 million.

“Based upon recent discussions and negotiations with customers, we are optimistic that the company will receive new orders in the near future that will enable us to continue our profitability,” Pinsley said in February as earnings were released.

Espey’s board also declared a regular quarterly dividend of $0.225 per share on Tuesday, payable March 19 to all shareholders of record March 5.

Categories: Business

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