Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

Significant Accounting Policies Significant Accounting Policies (Policies)

Significant Accounting Policies Significant Accounting Policies (Policies)
3 Months Ended 6 Months Ended
Jun. 29, 2013
Jun. 29, 2013
Accounting Policies [Abstract]    
Nature of business and basis of presentation  
Nature of Business and Basis of Presentation
Appliance Recycling Centers of America, Inc. and subsidiaries (“we,” the “Company” or “ARCA”) are in the business of providing turnkey appliance recycling and replacement services for electric utilities and other sponsors of energy efficiency programs.  We also sell new major household appliances through a chain of Company-owned stores under the name ApplianceSmart®.  In addition, we have a 50% interest in a joint venture operating under the name ARCA Advanced Processing, LLC (“AAP”), which recycles appliances from twelve states in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States for General Electric Company (“GE”) acting through its GE Appliances business component.  These appliances include units manufactured by GE as well as by other manufacturers.
The accompanying consolidated financial statements of the Company are unaudited and have been prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”) in the United States of America for interim financial information and Article 8 of Regulation S-X promulgated by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”).  Accordingly, they do not include all of the information and notes required by GAAP for complete financial statements.  In the opinion of management, normal and recurring adjustments and accruals considered necessary for a fair presentation for the periods indicated have been included.  Operating results for the three-month and six-month periods ended June 29, 2013, and June 30, 2012, are presented using 13-week and 26-week periods, respectively.  The results of operations for any interim period are not necessarily indicative of the results for the year.
These financial statements should be read in conjunction with the Company’s audited consolidated financial statements and related notes thereto for the year ended December 29, 2012, included in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC on March 22, 2013.
Principles of consolidation  
Principles of consolidation:  The consolidated financial statements include the accounts of Appliance Recycling Centers of America, Inc. and our subsidiaries.  All significant intercompany accounts and transactions have been eliminated in consolidation.
ApplianceSmart, Inc., a Minnesota corporation, is a wholly owned subsidiary that was formed through a corporate reorganization in July 2011 to hold our business of selling new major household appliances through a chain of Company-owned retail stores.  ARCA Canada Inc., a Canadian corporation, is a wholly owned subsidiary that was formed in September 2006 to provide turnkey recycling services for electric utility energy efficiency programs.  ARCA Recycling, Inc., a California corporation, is a wholly owned subsidiary that was formed in November 1991 to provide turnkey recycling services for electric utility efficiency programs.  The operating results of our wholly owned subsidiaries are consolidated in our financial statements.
AAP is a joint venture that was formed in October 2009 between ARCA and 4301 Operations, LLC (“4301”) to support ARCA’s agreement, as amended, with GE acting through its GE Appliances business component.  Both ARCA and 4301 have a 50% interest in AAP.  GE sells its recyclable appliances generated from twelve states in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States to ARCA, which collects, processes and recycles the appliances.  The agreement requires that ARCA will only recycle, and will not sell for re-use or resale, the recyclable appliances purchased from GE.  AAP established a regional processing center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at which the recyclable appliances are processed.  The term of the agreement is for six years from the first date of appliance collection, which was March 31, 2010.  AAP commenced operations in February 2010 and has the exclusive rights to service the GE agreement as a subcontractor for ARCA.  The financial position and results of operations of AAP are consolidated in our financial statements based on our conclusion that AAP is a variable interest entity and because we have the ability to significantly influence the economic performance of the entity through our contractual agreement with GE.
Reclassifications:  The consolidated statements of comprehensive income (loss) include the reclassification of prior year revenues, cost of revenues and sales, general and administrative expenses related to AAP to conform with the current year presentation. The reclassification is related primarily to facilities costs and certain other costs not directly related to the production of recycled materials from cost of revenues to sales, general and administrative expenses.
Fair value of financial instruments  
Fair value of financial instruments:  The following methods and assumptions are used to estimate the fair value of each class of financial instrument:
Cash and cash equivalents, accounts receivable and accounts payable:  Due to their nature and short-term maturities, the carrying amounts approximate fair value.

Short- and long-term debt:  The fair value of short- and long-term debt approximates carrying value and has been estimated based on discounted cash flows using interest rates being offered for similar debt having the same or similar remaining maturities and collateral requirements.
No separate comparison of fair values versus carrying values is presented for the aforementioned financial instruments since their fair values are not significantly different than their balance sheet carrying amounts.  In addition, the aggregate fair values of the financial instruments would not represent the underlying value of our Company.
Trade receivables  
Trade receivables:  We carry unsecured trade receivables at the original invoice amount less an estimate made for doubtful accounts based on a monthly review of all outstanding amounts.  Management determines the allowance for doubtful accounts by regularly evaluating individual customer receivables and considering a customer’s financial condition, credit history and current economic conditions.  We write off trade receivables when we deem them uncollectible.  We record recoveries of trade receivables previously written off when we receive them.  We consider a trade receivable to be past due if any portion of the receivable balance is outstanding for more than ninety days.  We do not charge interest on past due receivables.
Inventories:  Inventories, consisting principally of appliances, are stated at the lower of cost, determined on a specific identification basis, or market and consist of:
June 29,
December 29,
Appliances held for resale


Processed metals from recycled appliances held for resale


Less provision for inventory obsolescence


We provide estimated provisions for the obsolescence of our appliance inventories, including adjustments to market, based on various factors, including the age of such inventory and our management’s assessment of the need for such provisions.  We look at historical inventory agings and margin analysis in determining our provision estimate.  A revised cost basis is used once a provision for obsolescence is recorded.
Software development costs  
Software development costs:  We capitalize software developed for internal use and are amortizing such costs over their estimated useful lives of three years.
Product warranty  
Product warranty:  We provide a warranty for the replacement or repair of certain defective units, which varies based on the product sold.  Our standard warranty policy requires us to repair or replace certain defective units at no cost to our customers.  We estimate the costs that may be incurred under our warranty and record an accrual in the amount of such costs at the time we recognize product revenue.  Factors that affect our warranty accrual for covered units include the number of units sold, historical and anticipated rates of warranty claims on these units, and the cost of such claims.  We periodically assess the adequacy of our recorded warranty accrual and adjust the amounts as necessary.
Share-based compensation  
Share-based compensation:  We recognize share-based compensation expense on a straight-line basis over the expected vesting period for share-based awards granted.  We use the Black-Scholes option pricing model to determine the fair value of awards at the grant date.  We calculate the expected volatility for stock awards using historical volatility.  We estimate a 0%-5% forfeiture rate for stock awards issued to all employees and members of the Board of Directors, but will continue to review these estimates in future periods.  The risk-free rates for the expected terms of the stock awards are based on the U.S. Treasury yield curve in effect at the time of the grant.  The expected life represents the period that the stock awards are expected to be outstanding.
Comprehensive income (loss)  
Comprehensive income (loss):  Other comprehensive income (loss) refers to revenues, expenses, gains and losses that under generally accepted accounting principles are included in comprehensive income (loss) but are excluded from net income (loss) as these amounts are recorded directly as an adjustment to shareholders’ equity.  Our other comprehensive income (loss) is comprised of foreign currency translation adjustments.
Basic and diluted income per share  
Basic and diluted income (loss) per share:  Basic income (loss) per common share is computed based on the weighted average number of common shares outstanding.  Diluted income (loss) per common share is computed based on the weighted average number of common shares outstanding adjusted by the number of additional shares that would have been outstanding had the potentially dilutive common shares been issued.  Potentially dilutive shares of Common Stock include unexercised stock options and warrants.  Basic per share amounts are computed, generally, by dividing net income (loss) attributable to controlling interest by the weighted average number of common shares outstanding.  Diluted per share amounts assume the conversion, exercise or issuance of all potential Common Stock instruments unless their effect is anti-dilutive, thereby reducing the loss or increasing the income per common share.  In calculating diluted weighted average shares and per share amounts, we included stock options and warrants with exercise prices below average market prices, for the respective reporting periods in which they were dilutive, using the treasury stock method.