Texas-based international leather distributor, The Leather Factory Inc, today reported a 25 per cent leap in sales for the third quarter and forecast positive figures for the fourth quarter.

Net income for the quarter ended September 30, 2001 was $396,528 or $0.04 per share, compared to net income of $315,099 or $0.03 per share for the third quarter of 2000.

Meanwhile, net sales during the third quarter were $9.1 million, up from $7.3m for the same quarter last year. Tandy Leather Company, a subsidiary of The Leather Factory acquired in November 2000, accounted for 80 per cent of the sales increase.

For the nine months ended September 30, sales increased 25 per cent to $27.9m from $22.3m in sales for the first nine months of 2000. Tandy's sales contributed approximately 90 per cent of the increase.

Net income for the nine months ended September 30, 2001 was $1.5m or $0.15 per share, compared to net income of $1.1m, or $0.12 per share, for the same period in 2000.

Ron Morgan, president and chief operating officer, commented, "We are pleased with our results again this quarter. Sales dropped off slightly during the last several weeks of the quarter, as was expected given the state of the nation.

"However, it didn't have a significant impact on our results, and the beginning of our fourth quarter is rebounding nicely and looks promising."

The Based in Fort Worth, Texas, The Leather Factory distributes products including leather, leatherworking tools, buckles and adornments for belts, leather dyes and finishes, shoe repair supplies, saddle and tack hardware, and do-it-yourself kits.