Income for Del Monte Foods up 30% in year

by FoodBusinessNews.net Staff
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SAN FRANCISCO — Boosted by a strong fourth quarter and pricing actions, income for Del Monte Foods Co. for the year ended May 3 was up 30%.

For the year, Del Monte posted net income of $172.3 million, equal to 87c per share on the common stock, up from $133.1 million, or 66c per share, during the previous year. Sales for the year were $3,626.9 million, up 14% from $3,179.8 million during the previous year.

"The company’s strong fiscal 2009 results are a testament to the action we have taken over the last several years to upgrade our portfolio and increase our competitiveness," said Richard G. Wolford, chairman and chief executive officer. "These efforts culminated in the implementation and execution of the accelerated growth plan in fiscal 2009 and drove our solid financial performance. With our accelerated growth plan in place, further execution in fiscal 2010 is expected to drive ongoing solid performance. Similar to fiscal 2009, we will continue to invest behind our core brands and key growth energies as well as execute against our pricing and productivity strategic initiative. We are strongly committed to driving top-line growth and shareholder value, and our fiscal 2009 performance and outlook for fiscal 2010 give us the confidence we will achieve these goals."

For the fourth quarter ended May 3, the company had income of $71.5 million, or 36c per share, up 42% from $50.4 million during the same quarter of the previous year. Sales for the quarter were $1,057.4 million, up 21% from $875.8 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

"The exceptionally strong top-line results were balanced across both the pet and consumer businesses and reflect the increasing momentum behind our brands following a step change increase in marketing support, the success of our pricing actions taken to recoup margins following several years of aggressive cost pressures, as well as the performance of our products in challenging economic times. Importantly, overall volume increased during the quarter despite the elasticity impact of our pricing actions."

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