Coca-Cola profits plummeted on lower outdoor activities

Coca-Cola recorded lower profits in the first quarter, while volumes remained stable and sales increased. That’s what the soda company reported on Monday. Coca-Cola made a profit of $ 2.25 billion, compared to $ 2.78 billion a year earlier. Earnings per share fell from $ 0.64 to $ 0.52. Analysts counted on an average of $ 0.50.

There were as many steps of soda cans sold as a year ago, while net sales increased by 5 percent to $ 9.0 billion. This was mainly due to the fact that the quarter lasted five days longer than in the previous year. Analysts consulted by FactSet predicted revenue of $ 8.68 billion.

In the first three months of this year, the volume trend improved month by month, but globally, the path to recovery after the coronavirus crisis continues to be “asynchronous”, Coca-Cola said.

The volume in March was back to the 2019 level, although more soft drinks were sold for home consumption, which is less profitable than outdoor consumption. In the Asia-Pacific region, the volume grew by 9 percent, especially in China and India, while in North America sales fell by 6 percent. In the European region, too, volumes were lower than a year earlier.

Coca-Cola did not significantly change the outlook, except for an expected positive impact of exchange rate movements on earnings per share of 2-3 percent in 2021 and 5-6 percent in the second quarter. For the year as a whole, the expectation remained for earnings growth per share in a bandwidth around 10 percent.

On Monday, Coca-Cola was 1.2 percent higher in the front-door market on Wall Street.

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