Kerry reaffirms full-year earnings guidance after ‘solid’ start

Company reports a 3.8% rise in business volumes with pricing increasing 1.3%

The group said it expects to achieve “good revenue growth and 5 per cent to 9 per cent growth in adjusted earnings”

The group said it expects to achieve “good revenue growth and 5 per cent to 9 per cent growth in adjusted earnings”

 

Food group Kerry has said it made a solid start to the year with sustained volume growth recorded during its first quarter despite taking a hit to its trading margin due to Brexit.

In an interim management statement, the company which makes Dairygold, Dennys and Cheesestrings, reaffirmed its earning guidance for the full-year as it reported a 3.8 per cent rise in business volumes in the quarter with pricing increasing 1.3 per cent.

Reported revenues increased by 4.5 per cent, Kerry said.

The group said it expects to achieve “good revenue growth and 5 per cent to 9 per cent growth in adjusted earnings to a range of 339.6 to 352.5 cent per share in 2017,” . This is fuelled in part from its strong performance in the Asia-Pacific region where it maintained double-digit growth in the first quarter.

“Our first quarter highlights a good volume driven performance across Group businesses, maintaining the momentum reported in 2016,” said chief executive Stan McCarthy.

The company said its taste and nutrition division recorded a 4.1 per cent growth in business volumes, boosted by a 3.8 per cent rise in the Americas region. Market conditions in the EMEA region were broadly unchanged but the group said it achieved an improved performance with volumes increasing 1.9 per cent compared to the same period of 2016.

Kerry’s consumer foods division delivered 2.3 per cent volume growth as pricing rose 1 per cent.

At the end of March, net debt stood at €1.2 billion, as against €1.3 billion at year-end reflecting strong cash generation in the period.

The group, which is welcoming Edmond Scanlon on board as its new chief executive in September, repaid $192 million of senior notes in January.