The Toro Co. posted net earnings of $50 million on a net sales increase of 11.3 percent to $567.5 million for its fiscal third quarter of 2014. In the same period in 2013, the company’s net earnings were $40.1 million on net sales of $509.9 million. For the first nine months of fiscal 2014, net earnings were $163 million on a 6-percent net sales increase to $1.759 billion.

“Our team is especially proud to deliver record results and double-digit sales and earnings growth for the third quarter in which we also celebrated our centennial milestone,” said Michael Hoffman, Toro chairman and CEO. “After successfully managing through the challenges of a late spring, our quarterly results benefited from favorable summer growing conditions in key markets that, similar to last year, helped drive retail sales across most of our businesses. Shipments of golf equipment and irrigation products increased on strong retail demand for our innovative product offerings. In addition, we returned to a more normal quarterly flow for channel purchases of professional equipment subject to Tier 4 emission standards. Landscape contractor customers continued to invest in turf maintenance equipment, which also helped drive sales. On the residential side of our business, early demand for snow products increased as channel partners began to prepare for the anticipated strong retail pre-season.”

Hoffman expressed optimism as the company entered the final quarter of its fiscal year. “We will continue to focus on the key things that have driven our past performance: developing innovative products, serving our customers and executing in the marketplace,” he said. “We will keep a close eye on both retail demand and field inventory levels and make adjustments as necessary."

The company now expects revenue growth for fiscal 2014 to be about 6 percent.

Toro is headquartered in Bloomington, Minn.