Weston acquisition boosts Bimbo's quarterly results

by Jeff Gelski
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MEXICO CITY — First-quarter sales in the United States nearly tripled for Grupo Bimbo S.A.B. de C.V. as the company completed its purchase of the U.S. fresh bakery business of George Weston Bakeries, Inc. in the quarter. Financial figures for net majority income, EBITDA and operating profit also grew both companywide and in the United States.

U.S. sales reached NP11,995 million ($916 million) in the quarter ended March 31, which compared with NP4,328 million ($330 million) in the previous year’s first quarter. Pricing actions taken over the past 12 months, growth at national retailers and a stronger U.S. dollar also contributed to sales. In dollar terms, U.S. net sales excluding the acquisition would have increased almost 2%. U.S. sales accounted for more than 42% of total Grupo Bimbo S.A.B. de C.V. first-quarter sales this year after accounting for more than 22% in the previous year’s first quarter.

Companywide first-quarter sales of NP28,337 million were up more than 46% from NP19,347 million in the previous year’s first quarter. Excluding the Weston acquisition, net sales would have climbed almost 16%. Organic growth in the U.S. operation and Latin American growth also contributed to first-quarter sales.

U.S. first-quarter operating profit rose to NP940 million from NP17 million, and U.S. first-quarter EBITDA rose to NP1,211 million from NP103 million. Companywide, Grupo Bimbo S.A.B. de C.V. posted first-quarter net income of NP1,027 million, a 26% increase from NP814 million, and first-quarter EBITDA of NP3,037 million, up from NP1,896 million.

Grupo Bimbo closed the U.S. acquisition on Jan. 21. The operation formerly known as Weston Foods, Inc. now is named BBU East while the former Bimbo Bakeries USA now is named BBU West.

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