Shares in US-based baby food group Mead Johnson closed up yesterday (27 January) after the company booked “record” sales and profits in 2010.
Double-digit sales growth in Latin America and Asia and favourable foreign exchange drove an 11% rise in annual revenues to $3.14bn.
Net earnings were up 13% at $452.7m thanks to “strong” sales growth, lower interest costs and a reduced tax rate, although the company pointed to continued investment in “demand-generation activities” and higher commodity costs. EBIT increased from $679.6m in 2009 to $682.9m in 2010.
Fourth-quarter net sales rose 13% to $803.7m. Net earnings were up from $64m in the fourth quarter of 2009 to $99.6m and 2010; EBIT rose from $113m to $146.6m.
“We concluded the year on a strong note reporting record sales and earnings for 2010,” said CEO Stephen Golsby. “The year unfolded as expected with Asia and Latin America continuing to deliver double-digit sales growth and the North America/Europe segment growing in the low single-digits. Our strong performance is evidence of the effectiveness of our growth strategy, and we expect that 2011 will be another successful year for Mead Johnson.”
Golsby added: “We expect to report another year of solid sales and earnings growth. We are initiating 2011 non-GAAP EPS guidance in the range of $2.55 to $2.65, up from $2.42 per share in 2010.”
Shares in Mead Johnson closed up 1.2% at US$59.61.
Click here for the full earnings release.