Financial digest, 22 Feb 2012: Campbell's, Carlsberg, Heinz

Shaun Weston22 Feb 2012

The latest financial news for 22 February 2012 includes Campbell Soup Company, Carlsberg Group, Heinz, Kerry Group and Orangina Schweppes.

Campbell’s

Campbell Soup Company has reported its results for the second quarter of fiscal 2012. Net earnings for the quarter ended 29 January 2012 were $205m, or $0.64 per share, compared with $239m, or $0.71 per share, in the prior year.

The current quarter’s reported net earnings included charges associated with the previously announced June 2011 restructuring programme. Excluding items impacting comparability in the current year, adjusted net earnings decreased 13% to $207m, and adjusted net earnings per share decreased 10% to $0.64 in the current quarter.

Carlsberg Group

Carlsberg Group beer volumes grew by 4% to 118.7m hl with 3% organic growth. All regions reported organic volume growth. In Q4, Group beer volumes grew organically by 8%, positively impacted by stock building by Russian distributors.

Net revenue increased by 6% to DKK 63.6bn with 6% organic growth. Q4 net revenue grew by 11% to DKK 14.9bn with 11% organic growth.

In 2011, higher input costs, higher logistics costs and a higher level of sales and marketing investments, particularly in Eastern Europe and Asia, resulted in an operating profit of DKK 9,816m with a 4% organic decline. Q4 operating profit grew strongly by 67% to DKK 1,834m.

Net profit was DKK 5,149m. Free cash flow was DKK 3.9bn. Trading working capital to net revenue was 1.9% compared to 2.6% in 2010. Net interest-bearing debt was DKK 32.5bn, impacted by acquisitions, share buy-back and currency impact.

During the year, the Group continued to increase ownership in its companies across the regions, including companies in Vietnam, Laos and China.

Heinz

HJ Heinz Company has reported third-quarter sales growth of 7.2%, led by dynamic growth in Emerging Markets and higher Global Ketchup sales.

Earnings per share increased to $0.95 before special items ($0.88 after special charges for productivity initiatives). EPS grew 4.8% on a reported basis and 13.1% excluding special items. Sales in the fiscal quarter ended 25 January 2012 grew 7.2% to $2.92bn.

Kerry Group

Kerry Group sales revenue in 2011 on a reported basis increased by 6.9% to €5.3bn, reflecting like-for-like growth of 6.4% when account is taken of acquisitions and currency translation.

Business volumes grew by 3.3% whilst product pricing/mix increased by 3.2%. Cost recovery proved successful in ingredients & flavours markets with residual increases in some categories secured for 2012. The lag in cost recovery in the Group's consumer foods' businesses will be overcome through continuing business efficiency projects and pricing actions.

Q4 sales volumes in ingredients & flavours reflect good growth against a strong comparative in 2010. Overall growth in the Group's consumer foods categories was weaker in the fourth quarter but the level of trading over the holiday period was 'encouraging'.

Over the full year, ingredients & flavours' business volumes increased by 4% and consumer foods achieved 1.1% business volume growth. Group trading profit reached a milestone level of €501m, an increase of 7.1% LFL. Despite the unprecedented cost inflationary challenges, the Group maintained solid underlying business trading margin momentum.

Ingredients & flavours achieved 10 basis points margin improvement to 11.9%. Consumer foods margin was back 30 basis points to 7.8% despite the successful business efficiency measures undertaken during the year. Allowing for unallocated development costs relating to the global IT ('Kerryconnect') project and the arithmetical effect which cost recovery pricing has on the margin calculation, the Group trading profit margin in 2011 was back 10 basis points to 9.4%

Adjusted profit after tax before brand related intangible asset amortisation increased by 11.2% to €375m (2010: €337m). Adjusted earnings per share increased by 11.1% to 213.4 cent (2010: 192.1 cent).

The board recommends a final dividend of 22.4 cent per share, an increase of 12% on the 2010 final dividend. Together with the interim dividend of 9.8 cent per share, this brings the total dividend for the year to 32.2 cent, an increase of 11.8% on the prior year.

Orangina Schweppes

Orangina Schweppes posts a 10.8% increase in FY 2011 net sales to €1.18bn, boosted by its geographic expansion and the acquisition of French bottler Européenne d`Embouteillage in March 2011.

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