Salty snacks and non-carbonated drinks grow income at PepsiCo

by Staff
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PURCHASE, N.Y. — In the first quarter ended Mar. 25, net income at PepsiCo grew 12% to $1,019,000,000, equal to 60c per share on the common stock, compared with $912,000,000, or 53c per share, in the same period last year. Income growth was driven by strong performances in Frito-Lay and the non-carbonated beverage segment of PepsiCo Beverages.

Net revenues for the quarter grew 9% to $7,205,000,000, compared with net revenue of $6,585,000,000 in the first quarter of last year.

Frito Lay North America generated 6% revenue growth, led by double-digit growth in Sun Chips and Quaker Chewy granola bars and rice cakes. Tostitos tortilla chips also saw strong single-digit growth, while Doritos and Lays sustained slight declines.

PepsiCo Beverages North America saw revenue grow 12%, as volume in non-carbonated beverages grew 18%, led by double-digit growth in Gatorade, Aquafina, Lipton ready-to-drink tea and Propel fitness water.

Volume in carbonated soft drinks, both regular and diet, fell 1% as slight increases in Mountain Dew and Sierra Mist were unable to negate a decline in Pepsi volume.

PepsiCo International net revenues increased 12% in the quarter, driven by high volume gains. Snacks volume grew 7%, led by high single-digit growth in the U.K. and double-digit growth in Turkey, Russia and Australia. Acquisitions, such as that of Polish snacks maker Star Foods and Australia’s Smith’s Snackfood Co., contributed to volume growth.

Beverage volume grew 16%, led by gains in China, the Middle East and India. Volume in carbonated soft drinks saw growth in the mid-teens, while non-carbonated soft drinks experienced volume growth of 30%. Acquisitions also contributed to volume growth.

Finally, Quaker Foods North America revenue grew 6%, led by volume growth in Life cereal, Quaker oatmeal and Rice-A-Roni.

The company also reaffirmed its earnings guidance for 2006, saying it expects earnings per share growth of at least $2.93.

"We continue to see solid top-line momentum across our businesses, driven by product innovation and strong marketplace execution," said Steve Reinemund, chairman and chief executive officer. "Importantly, we’re also seeing good profit performance despite continue pressure from inflation in some of our key input costs. Overall, we’re very pleased with the results in the quarter, and remain confident in our outlook for 2006."

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