Campbell earnings down 5% in quarter

by Staff
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CAMDEN, N.J. — Higher costs, disappointing soup sales and charges associated with a restructuring program led to a 5% decrease in earnings at Campbell Soup Co. during the third quarter.

For the quarter ended April 19, the company had earnings of $177 million, equal to 56c per share on the common stock, which compared with earnings of $187 million, equal to 58c per share, during the same quarter of the previous year. Sales for the quarter were $1,821 million, up slightly from $1,813 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

“We continued to advance our strategies to stabilize and then profitably grow North America soup and simple meals, expand our international presence and continue to drive growth in healthy beverages and baked snacks,” said Denise Morrison, president and chief executive officer. “Although overall sales trends are improving, we are not satisfied with our performance this quarter. As planned, we focused our marketing efforts on increasing advertising and consumer promotion. We executed well in some businesses, delivering solid sales growth in U.S. Beverages, Pepperidge Farm and Canada. We did not execute as well in others.

“We remain committed to our three growth strategies. At Campbell, we are building a business for the long term through innovation, brand-building and expansion into higher growth segments that connect with today’s consumers. We have made solid progress reinvigorating our innovation pipeline, and customers have responded favorably to the new products we have planned for next year. With continued focus on our strategies, we plan to deliver sustainable profitable net sales growth that will create value for shareholders.”

For the U.S. Simple Meals segment, the company had earnings of $120 million, down 14% from $139 million during the same quarter of the previous year. Sales for the segment were $567 million, down 2% from $580 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

The Global Baking and Snacking segment had an income of $73 million, down 11% from $82 million during the same quarter of the previous year. The segment had sales of $543 million, up 3% from $537 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

For the nine months the company as a whole had earnings of $647 million, equal to $2.03 per share, down 8% from $705 million, equal to $2.13 per share, during the same period of the previous year. Sales for the nine months were $6,094 million, down slightly from $6,112 million during the same time period of the previous year.

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