Motorcar Parts of America Inc. on Monday said it moved to a profit in its fiscal third quarter. The company attributed its turnaround to new customers, higher gross profit and a stronger balance sheet.

The Torrance remanufacturer of alternators and starters for cars and trucks reported net income of $2.1 million (18 cents per share) for the quarter ended Dec. 31, compared with a net loss of $314,000 (3 cents) a year earlier. Revenue rose 2 percent to $36.5 million, boosted by new customers from the company’s recent acquisition of Reliance Automotive.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters on average expected the company to earn 17 cents per share on revenue of $38.9 million.

Cash generated from operations jumped 122 percent to $13.1 million. Gross profit as a percentage of net sales was 29.8 percent, compared with 28.3 percent a year ago and 27.4 percent in the company’s second quarter.

The company last month also announced an initiative to expand its presence for remanufactured alternators and starters for heavy equipment. Chief Executive Selwyn Joffe also pointed to the recent 10-year renewal of a contract with a major automotive retailer as a factor in the turnaround.

“We look forward to continued strong growth supported by favorable trends within our sector of the automotive aftermarket industry," Joffe said in a press release.

Shares closed down 6 cents, or 1 percent, to $5.78 on the Nasdaq.

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