Kraft's Revenue Forecast Disappoints

Friday, 15 Feb 2013 10:31 AM


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Kraft Foods Group Inc. forecast weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter revenue on Friday, saying it failed to adequately tailor its products to meet consumer demand for lower-priced foods.

Shares of Kraft, which was spun off late last year from Mondelez International, fell 1 percent in premarket trade.

"We definitely stubbed our toe this quarter," Chief Executive Tony Vernon told analysts on a conference call. He said sales were hurt after rivals launched lower-priced items that Kraft did not match.

Kraft, whose brands include Oscar Mayer lunch meat and Maxwell House coffee, said it now expects full-year 2013 earnings of about $2.75 per share, up from a previous forecast of $2.60.

The company expects fourth-quarter earnings of about 15 cents per share, including a one-time, non-cash charge of about 24 cents for post-employment benefits, 14 cents of restructuring charges, and a charge of 4 cents related to hedging activities.

Analysts on average expect fourth-quarter earnings of 22 cents per share on revenue of $4.74 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The company said it will issue final 2012 results by March 29.

Kraft shares closed at $47.16 on the Nasdaq on Thursday and fell to $46.65 in premarket trading Friday.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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