Coca-Cola Earnings Lackluster Despite Q3 Beat

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Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO) reported its most recent quarterly results before the markets opened on Wednesday. Although revenues were hampered by the continued headwind of refranchising, investors took this earnings beat in stride, but still sent shares lower, adding a little more to the Dow’s loss.

The company said that it had $0.50 in earnings per share (EPS) and $9.08 in revenue. That compares with consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters of $0.49 in EPS and revenue of $8.72 billion. The same period of last year reportedly had EPS of $0.49 and $10.63 billion in revenue.

Total unit case volume was even. Despite continued macroeconomic challenges in certain Latin American markets, emerging and developing markets saw improving trends, achieving slightly positive unit case volume growth. This was offset by the performance in developed markets, which was negatively affected by weather and the cycling of strong results from the prior year.

In terms of its segments, Coke reported as follows:

  • Europe, Middle East & Africa saw price/mix growth of 1% that was driven by positive price/mix across the European business units. Unit case volume grew 1%.
  • Latin America had price/mix growth of 10%, which was primarily driven by price/mix growth in Mexico. The 3% unit case volume decline was driven by a high single-digit decline in both Brazil and the Latin Center business unit.
  • North America had price/mix growth of 2% that reflects the continued execution of the company’s disciplined occasion, brand, price, and package strategy. Unit case volume was even, which included low single-digit growth in tea and coffee, offset by a low single-digit decline in water, enhanced water and sports drinks.
  • Asia Pacific price/mix growth of 1% included a negative impact from geographic mix, which was driven by growth in India and China outpacing performance in Japan. Unit case volume increased 3%.
  • Bottling Investments price/mix noted growth of 4%, driven by positive price/mix in North America and India bottling operations.

Looking ahead to the full year, the company expects to see 3% growth in organic revenues, with EPS flat to up 2%. The consensus estimates call for $1.90 in EPS and $35.05 billion in revenue for the 2017 full year.

James Quincey, president and CEO, commented:

I am encouraged with our progress and results in the quarter. Our performance reflects the strength of an organization that is focused on delivering against its financial commitments while also making substantial structural and cultural changes.

Shares of Coke were last seen down about 0.4% at $46.00, with a consensus analyst price target of $47.76 and a 52-week range of $39.88 to $46.98.