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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Conagra Brands’ net sales surge 15% in the fiscal first quarter.

  • Conagra Brands’ net sales surge 15% in the fiscal first quarter.
  • Its adjusted EBITDA jumped 34.5% in the recent quarter.
  • Conagra forecasts up to 57 pence of adjusted diluted EPS in Q2.

Conagra Brands Inc. (NYSE: CAG) said on Thursday that its organic net sales in the fiscal first quarter came in 15% higher on a year over year basis. The company attributed the increase to a 10.9% annualised growth in volume. Experts had forecast the company to report a much lower 10.9% growth in organic net sales in the recent quarter.

Conagra’s sales from foodservice plummeted 21.8%

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Conagra generated £880 million of net sales from its Grocery & Snacks business that represents a 16% growth as compared the same quarter last year. Its sales from Refrigerated & Frozen segment also printed at £880 million or 17.9% higher than last year. In an announcement earlier this week, Utz Brands expressed plans of buying HK Anderson (peanut butter filled pretzel) brand from Conagra for less than £7.75 million.

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International sales also surged 7.2% in Q1 to £169.94 million, offset by a massive 21.8% decline to £151.40 million of sales from Foodservice. In the prior quarter (Q4), the U.S. company had registered £163.86 million of net income, as per the report published in late June.

The American packaged foods company also revealed a 244 basis points increase in adjusted gross margin on Thursday to 20.7%. At £502.07, it said that its adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interests, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation) jumped 34.5% in the recent quarter.

Conagra’s forecast for the fiscal second quarter

For the fiscal second quarter, the Chicago-based company now forecasts an up to 8% growth in organic net sales. It expects its adjusted diluted per-share earnings to fall in the range of 54 pence to 57 pence. Analysts, on the other hand, predict 55 pence of adjusted diluted EPS for Conagra in Q2. Its board also announced a 29% increase in quarterly cash dividend on Thursday.

Conagra Brands was reported trading 1.5% up in premarket trading on Thursday. But shares of the company slid about 5% on market open to hit an intraday low of £26.93 per share. Conagra is now exchanging hands close to the same level at which it started the year 2020. In March, the COVID-19 restrictions weighed on its performance and pushed the stock down to £18.73 per share.

In comparison, Conagra performed fairly upbeat in the stock market last year with an annual gain of about 50%. At the time of writing, it is valued at £13.18 billion and has a price to earnings ratio of 20.22.

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