ORRVILLE, Ohio, Aug. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- The J.M. Smucker Company, (NYSE: SJM.A and SJM.B), announced today that earnings for the first quarter ending July 31, 1998, were $10,416,000 up 4% percent over earnings of $9,973,000 for the same period last year. Sales for the three-month period were up approximately 2 percent, to $150,500,000 from $147,389,000 in the prior year first quarter. On a diluted basis, earnings per share were $.36 compared to $.34 per share last year.
The Company reported sales increases in its consumer, industrial, foodservice, and beverages business areas, with the majority of the increase occurring in consumer and industrial. The Company attributed the growth in the consumer area to an increase in fruit spread sales in the grocery market and to the launch of Smucker's Snackers, the Company's convenient new shelf- stable peanut butter and jelly offering for lunches and snacks. In the industrial area, the sales growth came in the bakery, yogurt filling, and frozen dairy categories from a combination of both new and existing products.
In international, the Company reported that sales continued to be adversely impacted by the strength of the American dollar versus the Australian and Canadian currencies. As a result, the international area reported sales for the quarter that were slightly behind those of the prior year, despite strong gains for the Australian business when measured in its domestic currency.
The Company reported that the increase in earnings resulted primarily from a combination of sales growth and a decrease in administrative expenses, offset by an increase in marketing expenditures. According to the Company, the increase in marketing represented investment spending for several new product initiatives, including Smucker's Snackers, along with additional support for the fruit spreads business. The Company also noted that it expects marketing support to continue at a higher level through the remainder of the fiscal year.
The J.M. Smucker Company is the nation's leading producer of branded preserves, jams, jellies, and other fruit spread products, health and natural foods beverages, ice cream toppings, and natural peanut butter.
THE J. M. SMUCKER COMPANY STATEMENTS OF CONSOLIDATED INCOME (Unaudited) Three Months Ended July 31, 1998 1997 (Dollars in thousands, except per share data) Net sales $150,500 $147,389 Cost of products sold 96,638 95,993 Gross profit 53,862 51,396 Selling, distribution, and administrative expenses 37,342 35,390 Operating income 16,520 16,006 Interest income 625 698 Interest expense (4) (5) Other income (expense) - net 295 126 Income before income taxes 17,436 16,825 Income taxes 7,020 6,852 Net income $10,416 $9,973 Net income per Common Share $0.36 $0.34 Net income per Common Share - Assuming Dilution $0.36 $0.34 Dividends declared per share: Class A $0.14 $0.13 Class B $0.14 $0.13 Common Shares outstanding 29,026,846 29,074,445 Common Shares outstanding - assuming dilution 29,332,437 29,195,258 The J. M. Smucker Company CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS (Unaudited) July 31, 1998 1997 (Dollars in thousands) ASSETS Current Assets: Cash and cash equivalents $7,052 $14,954 Trade receivables 46,276 51,417 Inventories 137,642 115,347 Other current assets 12,632 10,660 Total Current Assets 203,602 192,378 Property, Plant & Equipment, Net 153,414 144,822 Noncurrent Assets 64,554 66,733 Total $421,570 $403,933 LIABILITIES & SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY Current Liabilities: Accounts payable $46,379 $46,899 Other current liabilities 48,222 41,605 Total Current Liabilities 94,601 88,504 Other Noncurrent Liabilities 21,024 21,260 Shareholders' Equity, Net 305,945 294,169 Total $421,570 $403,933
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