PepsiCo Inc. (NYSE: PEP) reported first-quarter 2014 results before markets opened Thursday. The food and beverage company posted adjusted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.83 on revenues of $12.62 billion. In the same period a year ago, the company reported EPS of $0.77 on revenues of $12.58 billion. First-quarter results also compare to the Thomson Reuters consensus estimates for EPS of $0.75 and $12.4 billion in revenues.
On a constant currency basis, EPS rose 10% on revenue growth of 4%. On a GAAP basis, revenues were flat and EPS was up 15%.
The better-than-expected results are due largely to cost-cutting and higher snack-food sales. Soft drink sales were down 1% in North America and the same amount in Latin America.
At the end of the 2013, Pepsi raised its annual dividend from $2.27 a share to $2.62, effective in June. The company reaffirmed its plans to repurchase approximately $5 billion in stock during 2014. The company also reiterated its earlier statement that the combined effect of these programs will return about $8.7 billion to stockholders in 2014.
In its outlook, Pepsi continues to expect to grow adjusted EPS by 7% in 2014 compared with 2013. That translates to EPS of around $4.68. Currency translation effects are expected to have a negative impact of around 3% on 2014 EPS growth.
The company also expects to organic revenue growth in the mid-single digits and productivity savings of $1 billion. Pepsi expects commodity price inflation in the low single-digit range for 2014.
The company’s CEO said:
PepsiCo delivered mid-single-digit organic revenue growth and double-digit core constant currency earnings per share growth, despite ongoing macroeconomic volatility, political instability and other challenging marketplace conditions in a number of our key market. … We remain confident in achieving our financial goals for the full year and believe that we have the right strategies in place to create long-term value for our shareholders.
No word on whether Pepsi is the rumored potential buyer of a stake in SodaStream, but maybe that will be addressed during the conference call.
PepsiCo shares were down about 0.6% in premarket trading, at $81.00 in a 52-week range of $71.50 to $87.06. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $91.00 before this report.