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MEDIA: Mike Cummins
INVESTORS: Brian Kearney
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONAGRA BRANDS REPORTS NET SALES AND EPS GROWTH IN THIRD QUARTER
Raises Adjusted EPS Guidance Range
CHICAGO, March 22, 2018 Today Conagra Brands, Inc. (NYSE: CAG) reported results for the third quarter fiscal year 2018, which ended on February 25, 2018.
(all comparisons are against the prior year fiscal period, unless otherwise noted)
|||Net sales grew 0.7% and organic net sales1 declined 2.2% in the quarter. Consumption trends continued to improve but exceeded shipments to customers in the third quarter. This follows shipments in excess of consumption in the second quarter.|
|||The Refrigerated & Frozen segment continued its growth momentum in the third quarter with 3.2% net sales growth.|
|||Elevated input cost inflation, including transportation costs, and increased investments to drive brand saliency, enhanced distribution, and consumer trial of new innovation negatively impacted gross margin.|
|||Aided by a lower effective tax rate, diluted earnings per share (EPS) from continuing operations grew 112.2% from $0.41 to $0.87 in the quarter, and adjusted2 diluted EPS from continuing operations grew 27.1% from $0.48 to $0.61.|
|||For fiscal 2018, the Company now expects adjusted EPS3 to be in the range of $2.03 to $2.05, above the previously estimated range of $1.95 to $2.02.|
Sean Connolly, president and chief executive officer of Conagra Brands, commented, I continue to be pleased with the progress we are making on improving our fundamentals, particularly on the top line. Our efforts are paying off, and our businesses are gaining momentum. Our frozen portfolio, where we put most of our innovation focus this year, continues to show strong growth and share gains. Consumption in our Grocery & Snacks segment also continues to strengthen, and non-promoted consumption exceeded expectations in the quarter.
He added, Overall, our transformation plan remains squarely on track. We continue to invest to drive brand saliency, enhanced distribution, and consumer trial in the face of higher inflation on input and transportation costs, which is pressuring near-term margins. Strong underlying trends are enabling us to increase our fiscal 2018 adjusted EPS guidance above the range provided at the CAGNY conference in February, which already accounted for the impact of tax reform.
|1||Organic net sales excludes the impact of foreign exchange and divested businesses, as well as acquisitions (until the anniversary date of the acquisitions). All references to changes in volume and price/mix are based on organic net sales.|
|2||Adjusted financial measures, including organic net sales, are non-GAAP financial measures. Please see the end of this release for reconciliations to the most directly comparable GAAP financial measures.|
|3||The inability to predict the amount and timing of the impacts of certain items impacting comparability makes a detailed reconciliation of this forward-looking non-GAAP financial measure impracticable. Please see the end of this release for more information.|
The following information was filed by Conagra Brands Inc. (CAG) on Thursday, March 22, 2018 as an 8K 2.02 statement, which is an earnings press release pertaining to results of operations and financial condition. It may be helpful to assess the quality of management by comparing the information in the press release to the information in the accompanying 10-Q Quarterly Report statement of earnings and operation as management may choose to highlight particular information in the press release.
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