Saputo fiscal year earnings rise 18%

by Keith Nunes
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MONTREAL — The dairy processing company Saputo, Inc. saw its earnings rise 18% during fiscal 2011. Net income in the year ended March 31 totaled C$451,119,000 ($463,274,391), equal to C$2.19 per share on the common stock, up from C$382,714,000, or C$1.85 per share, in fiscal 2010.

Sales for the year were C$6,025,470,000 ($6,187,692,304), up 4% from C$5,810,582,000 during fiscal 2010.

Earnings before interest, taxes, deductions and amortization (EBITDA) in the company’s Canadian, European and Argentinean dairy products sector increased 7% to $C490.1 million compared with fiscal year 2010. The EBITDA for the U.S. dairy products sector increased 32% to C$287.4 million.

Looking ahead to fiscal 2012, Saputo said it was looking to bolster its position in the Canadian specialty cheese market as well as the U.S. specialty cheese category. On March 25, the company completed the acquisition of DCI, a cheese manufacturer based in the United States. The company said the acquisition will allow its U.S. dairy products business to enhance its presence in the retail segment by expanding its product offering and fulfilling its customers’ increasing demand for specialty cheeses.

During the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011, Saputo recorded net income of C$102.5 million, or C50c per share, up from net income of C$99.1 million, or C48c per share, in the same period a year ago. Sales for the quarter were C$1,486.7 compared with C$1,384.2 during fiscal 2010.

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