MIAMI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Watsco, Inc.’s (NYSE: WSO) Board approved a 19% increase in the annual dividend rate to $5.00 per share and has declared a regular quarterly cash dividend of $1.25 on each outstanding share of its Common and Class B common stock. The cash dividend is payable on July 31, 2017 to shareholders of record at the close of business on July 17, 2017.
Albert H. Nahmad, Watsco’s Chairman & CEO stated: “We are pleased to be able to increase dividends to our shareholders. This latest increase reflects our confidence in the business and is supported by our continued cash flow and strong balance sheet.”
Watsco has paid dividends to shareholders for more than 40 consecutive years. The Company’s philosophy is to share increasing amounts of cash flow through higher dividends while maintaining a conservative balance sheet with continued capacity to build its distribution network. Future changes in dividends are considered in light of investment opportunities, cash flow, general economic conditions and Watsco’s overall financial condition.
Watsco improves indoor living and working environments with air conditioning and heating solutions that provide comfort regardless of the outdoor climate. There are approximately 92 million central air conditioning and heating systems installed in the United States that have been in service for more than 10 years. Older systems often operate below today’s government mandated energy efficiency and environmental standards. Watsco has an opportunity to accelerate the replacement of these systems at a scale greater than our competitors as the movement toward reducing energy consumption and its environmental impact continues. This is especially important since heating and cooling accounts for approximately half of the energy consumed in a typical U.S. home.
Watsco’s traditional sales channel is through one of its 561 locations in the United States, Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico, and on an export basis to Latin America and the Caribbean. This network has been built over the last 25 years and serves 88,000 active customers. Watsco is developing and investing in technologies to enable sales via e-commerce, on-line marketplaces and through the retail sales channel. As the industry leader, we believe that significant growth potential remains given that the marketplace for HVAC/R products at the consumer level is estimated to be $88 billion annually. Additional information about Watsco may be found at http://www.watsco.com.