PURCHASE, N.Y. — Plans for PepsiCo, Inc. going forward include expanding the Bolt24 brand’s portfolio, which possibly could involve introducing a zero-calorie drink, and improving the performance of Mountain Dew.
Expect a larger roll-out of the Bolt24 brand next year, said Ramon L. Laguarta, chief executive officer of PepsiCo, in an Oct. 3 earnings call. This summer PepsiCo launched Bolt24 under its Gatorade brand and positioned it as geared toward the athlete “off the field.”
“Obviously, we reserve the right to have a Zero Bolt24 going forward,” he said.
Work on the Mountain Dew brand has begun.
“Mountain Dew is improving, but it’s not to the levels that we would like to see,” Mr. Laguarta said. “So that’s the focus of the team for the next few quarters: make sure that we get Dew back to what we think is a more sustainable performance.”
The brand already is well-resourced, Mr. Laguarta said, adding execution will be key. PepsiCo launched Mtn Dew Amp Game Fuel, an energy beverage aimed at gamers, in December 2018.
“It is a brand (Mountain Dew) that is in the intersection of C.S.D.s (carbonated soft drinks) and energy, and it’s not an easier problem to solve in terms of maintaining the relevance and the consumer high awareness for this brand compared to some of the other new trends that are happening in energy,” Mr. Laguarta said. “So that’s work for us to do, but I would say the brand is flat at this point, and we’ll continue to invest to make it a positive brand for us in the coming quarters.”
The Gatorade brand has flourished as sales of Gatorade Zero have surpassed $500 million since the zero-calorie beverage was launched in May 2018, he said.
“We’re especially pleased with the performance of Gatorade, which generated mid-single-digit net revenue growth and improved sequential market share performance,” Mr. Laguarta said.
Purchase-based PepsiCo posted net income of $2,100 million, or $1.50 per share on the common stock, in the third quarter ended Sept. 7, which was down 16% from $2,498 million, or $1.77 per share, in the third quarter of the previous year. Third-quarter net revenue rose 4.3% to $17,188 million from $16,485 million. PepsiCo executives expect to meet or exceed the full-year organic revenue growth target of 4%.
PepsiCo’s stock on the Nasdaq closed at $137.93 per share on Oct. 3, the day third-quarter results were announced, after closing at $133.94 per share on Oct. 2.
The Pepsi brand posted net revenue growth for the fifth consecutive quarter, Mr. Laguarta said, and Lifewtr and Propel both achieved double-digit net revenue growth.
PepsiCo Beverages North America had operating profit of $640 million in the quarter, which was down 9% from $703 million in the previous year’s third quarter. Net revenues rose 3.4% to $5,643 million from $5,456 million.
Within Frito-Lay North America, operating profit rose 3.6% to $1,286 million from $1,241 million in the third quarter of the previous fiscal year. Net revenue increased 5.5% to $4,105 million from $3,891 million.
Within Quaker Foods North America, operating profit of $126 million in the third quarter was down 12% from $143 million. Net revenue rose 1.6% to $576 million from $567 million.
Over the first three quarters of the fiscal year, PepsiCo companywide posted net income of $5,548 million, or $3.96 per share on the common stock, which was down 2% from $5,661 million, or $3.99 per share, in the same time of the previous year. Net revenue over the first three quarters was $46,521 million, up 3.1% from $45,137 million.