Canadian frozen dessert maker CoolBrands International has posted a 63% increase in quarterly net earnings on a 78% rise in revenues.

The company reported net earnings of C$14.8m (US$11.3m) for the fourth quarter to 31 August, compared to $9.1m a year earlier.

Revenues were $154.0m, compared to $86.4m a year earlier.

For the full fiscal year 2003, revenues rose 47% to $357.3m, while net earnings increased 51% to $31.7m.

"During fiscal 2003, CoolBrands achieved four major strategic growth objectives. First, we continued to grow our branded consumers products business, focusing particularly on the fast growing, higher margin "better for you" frozen novelty segment, in which CoolBrands now commands the leading share," said president and co-chief executive David J Stein.

"Second, in Americana Foods, we acquired manufacturing capacity for unique, value added frozen dessert products that enhances our ability to market and grow our brands. Third, in Dreamery Ice Cream, Whole Fruit Sorbet and Godiva Ice Cream, we added new brands to our portfolio that give CoolBrands significant share in the super premium and packaged ice cream segments.

"And fourth, CoolBrands became one of only two nationwide ice cream distribution systems providing "direct store delivery" (DSD) service to grocery stores, convenience stores and other retail outlets across the US by acquiring the Haagen-Dazs ice cream distribution system from Nestlé. We expect this enhanced control over the downstream distribution of our brands and partner brands will be a key factor in our future growth," he added.