first quarter net sales increased 27.6% to $165.5 million, compared to $129.7 million in the first quarter of 2016. The Technical Nonwovens ("TNW") segment reported increased net sales of $27.7 million, including $26.3 million from acquisitions. TNW’s 8.5% organic growth was driven by strong advanced materials sales and improving filtration demand in domestic power generation markets. Organic growth of 10.4% in the Performance Materials ("PM") segment was driven by both improved market demand for filtration products and some recovery in the insulation and cryogenics markets. The Thermal/Acoustical Fibers ("T/A Fibers") and Thermal/Acoustical Metals ("T/A Metals") segments were positively impacted by increased parts sales of 14.9% and 13.4%, respectively, due to increased demand and new platform launches.
Dale G. Barnhart, president and CEO, states, “I am pleased to report that Lydall delivered 11.1% organic sales growth and 32.1% adjusted EPS growth in the quarter. Organic growth was broad based with expansion across all segments. Thermal/Acoustical Fibers, Thermal/Acoustical Metals and Performance Materials segments delivered 14.8%, 13.6% and 10.4% growth, respectively, on strong market demand and favorable positioning. Reversing trends in prior quarters, the Technical Nonwovens segment delivered 8.5% organic growth on increased sales of advanced materials and improved demand from domestic power generation customers. Net sales from our recent acquisitions of Texel and Gutsche exceeded expectations, and our synergy programs remain on track.”