Teledyne Technologies Inc. (NYSE:TDY) Q1 2019 Earnings Conference Call Transcript
Apr 24, 2019 • 11:00 am ET
Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by, and welcome to the Teledyne Technologies First Quarter Earnings Conference Call. At this time all participants are in listen-only mode. Later we will conduct a question-and-answer session and instructions will be given at that time. (Operator Instructions) As a reminder, today's conference is being recorded.
I would now like to turn the conference over to your host Mr. Jason VanWees. Please go ahead, sir.
Great, thank you. Good morning, everyone. This is Jason VanWees, Executive Vice President, and I'd like to welcome everyone to Teledyne's first quarter 2019 earnings release conference call. We released our earnings earlier this morning before the market opened. Joining me today are Teledyne's Executive Chairman, Robert Mehrabian; President and CEO, Al Pichelli; Senior Vice President and CFO, Sue Main; and SVP, General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer and Secretary, Melanie Cibik. After remarks by Robert, Al and Sue, we will ask for your questions.
Of course, before we get started our attorneys have reminded me to tell you that all forward-looking statements made this morning are subject to various assumptions, risks and caveats as noted in the earnings release and our periodic SEC filings. And yes, actual results may differ materially. In order to avoid potential selective disclosures, this call is simultaneously being webcast and a replay both via webcast and dial-in will be available for approximately one month. Here is Robert.
Thank you, Jason, and good morning everyone and thank you for joining our earnings call. We began 2019 with a strongest first quarter in the Company's history. Sales, earnings, operating margin and cash flow were all records for any first quarter. I'm very pleased with the breadth of our performance across both our short cycle and long cycle businesses with increased sales in every business segment and major product line.
Specifically, in the first quarter sales increased 7.1% of which 5.1% was organic, including 1.3% of currency headwind. Earnings per share of $2.02 increased 11.6% compared to last year. In what is a seasonally weaker period, record first quarter free cash flow of $59 million allowed us to complete the scientific camera acquisition from Roper with only a modest increase in our leverage ratio, that's our debt-to-EBITDA ratio from 1.5 at the end of 2018 to 1.6 as of March 31, 2019.
We also continued to execute our proven strategy, first, to process a well balanced and focused business portfolio. Teledyne is not a complex company, but rather a portfolio of related companies and products with common underlying technologies that serve different customers and markets. Second, we want to continue to improve our operations and, third, to compound growth in earnings and free cash flow, driven by both organic growth and complementary acquisitions.
On that final point, our balance sheet remains exceptionally strong and our acquisition pipeline is healthy. Nevertheless, we always remain a very disciplined acquirer, allocating capital prudently as we successfully integrate acquired businesses.
I will now pass the call to Al and he will