Acquisitions lead to a modest earnings gain at General Mills

by Staff
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MINNEAPOLIS — Strength from recent acquisitions, including Yoki Alimentos in Brazil and Yoplait Canada, helped contribute to a 2% increase in third-quarter income at General Mills, Inc.

For the quarter ended Feb. 24, the company had earnings of $398.4 million, equal to 61c per share on the common stock, which compared with earnings of $391.5 million, equal to 61c per share, during the same quarter of the previous year. Sales for the quarter were $4,430.6 million, up 8% from $4,120.1 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

“Our sales and volume growth reflects contributions from new businesses and from established products,” said Ken Powell, chairman and chief executive officer. “Operating profit results for the quarter were particularly good with double-digit increases for both our U.S. Retail and Bakeries and Foodservice segments.”

Operating profit for the U.S. Retail segment was $577.3 million, up 13% from $512.5 million during the same quarter of the previous year. Sales for the segment were $2,664.6 million, up 2% from $2,609.4 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

The International segment had an operating profit of $96.1 million, up slightly from $96 million during the same quarter of the previous year. The segment had sales of $1,296.1 million, up 25% from $1,041.3 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

The Bakeries and Foodservice segment had an operating profit of $75.4 million, up 13% from $66.5 million during the same quarter of the previous year. The segment had sales of $469.9 million, up slightly from $469.4 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

For the nine months ended Feb. 24, the company as a whole saw earnings rise 20% to $1,488.9 million, equal to $2.29 per share, which compares with $1,241.9 million, equal to $1.92 per share, during the same period of the previous year. Sales for the nine months were $13,363.4 million, up 6% from $12,591.5 million during the same period of the previous year.

The company said its adjusted diluted earnings-per-share guidance for fiscal 2013 is in the range of $2.66 to $2.68.

“We are continuing to see slow but steady improvement in the operating environment,” Mr. Powell said. “Trends in our established businesses are improving, and integration of our new businesses is going smoothly. We’re preparing to launch a promising slate of new products as our new fiscal year begins this summer, and our plans for fiscal 2014 call for high single-digit e.p.s. growth, consistent with our long-term model.”

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