Dean Foods Beats on EPS, Raises Guidance

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Dean Foods Inc. (NYSE: DF) reported third-quarter 2012 earnings this morning. For the quarter, the food and beverage company posted adjusted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.33 on revenues of $3.1 billion. In the same period a year ago, the company reported EPS of $0.18 on revenues of $3.4 billion. Third-quarter results also compare to the Thomson Reuters consensus estimates for EPS of $0.28 and $3.23 billion in revenues.

On a GAAP basis, Dean Foods posted EPS of $0.20 for the quarter, totaling $61 million in “other income” as adjustments.

The company’s chairman said:

Today we announced our fifth consecutive quarter of growth, with all of our operating segments continuing to perform well. … Our strong performance this year has created the flexibility to pursue important strategic actions like the recently completed initial public offering of The WhiteWave Foods Company. It has also driven our expectations for further growth to close out the year.

The WhiteWave Foods Co. (NYSE: WWAV) was spun out of Dean and began trading publicly in late October. Dean used most of the proceeds to pay down existing debt. WhiteWave is still 86.7% owned by Dean Foods.

Dean Foods raised its guidance for full-year adjusted EPS to a range of $1.27 to $1.32, well above the current consensus estimate of $1.21. The company now expects fourth-quarter EPS of $0.27 to $0.32, compared with the current consensus estimate of $0.27. In its press release the company goes through a long list of adjustments, all of which add up to the revised guidance.

The company’s shares are up about 3% in premarket trading this morning, at $16.55 in a 52-week range of $9.17 to $19.17. The consensus target price for the shares was around $19.35 before today’s report.

Paul Ausick

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