Beazer Homes USA, Inc. (NYSE:BZH) Q4 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Nov 13, 2019 • 05:00 pm ET


Beazer Homes USA, Inc. (NYSE:BZH) Q4 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Good afternoon, and welcome to the Beazer Homes Earnings Conference Call for the Quarter and Fiscal Year ended September 30, 2019. Today's call is being recorded and a replay will be available on the Company's website later today. In addition, PowerPoint Slides intended to accompany this call are available in the Investor Relations section of the Company's website at

At this point, I will turn the call over to David Goldberg, Vice President and Treasurer.

David Goldberg

Thank you. Good afternoon and welcome to the Beazer Homes conference call discussing our results for the fourth quarter and full year of fiscal 2019. Before we begin, you should be aware that during this call, we will be making forward-looking statements. Such statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which are described in our SEC filings, including our Form 10-K, which may cause actual results to differ materially from our projections.

Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date the statement is made, and we do not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. New factors emerge from time-to-time and it is simply not possible to predict all such factors.

Joining me today are Allan Merrill, our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer; and Bob Salomon, our Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

On our call today, Allan will review highlights from fiscal 2019 and then discuss our strategy and goals for fiscal 2020. Bob will cover our fourth quarter results in greater depth as well as our expectations for our first quarter, and then I will come back to provide more detail about our land spend and update on our balance sheet and profitability, followed by a wrap up by Allan. After our prepared remarks, we will take questions in the time remaining.

[Technical Issues] turn the call over to Allan.

Allan P. Merrill

Thanks, David, and thank you for joining us on our call this afternoon. A strong fourth quarter allowed us to finish fiscal 2019 with substantial momentum, setting us up for growth in both profitability and returns in 2020. This outcome is a testament to our team's resilience and agility. Last year at this time, we were grappling with a very challenging new home sales market, driven by rapidly-rising mortgage rates, which contributed to affordability challenges.

In that environment, we increased incentives to spur home sales and allocated capital to debt reduction and share repurchases. This decisive response together with improvements in the sales environment and a successful capital markets transaction, improved results in ways that will be even more meaningful in 2020.

For the full year, we achieved the following. Improved new home orders, backlog and community count, which provides a solid foundation for growth as we move into 2020. Improved operations from streamlining our product offering, which led to higher customer satisfaction scores, quicker construction cycle times and lower build cost. And improved allocation of capital, which enable both investment in our business