Coca-Cola Co (NYSE:KO) reported that its net income surged 60.3% in the fourth quarter despite the top line witnessing an 8% downtick. That was because of the lack of significant losses suffered this quarter compared to last year’s. Its comparable earnings and top line came in above Wall Street analysts’ expectations. The company sees its organic revenue growing in line with its long-term objectives.
Coca-Cola reported net income of $1.24 billion for the fourth quarter, which was up 60.3% from $770 million. Its earnings per share also jumped 64.7% to 28 cents a share from 17 cents a share last year. On a constant currency basis, the company’s earnings were 38 cents a share, which was one cent a share higher than the Street analysts’ expectations of 37 cents a share.
The company’s operating revenues dipped 8% to $10.0 billion from $10.87 billion last year. Analysts predicted $9.91 billion revenue. Organic revenue fell 1% in the quarter due to six fewer days. Excluding that, sales were in line with unit case sales. The beverage firm said that there was a favorable price/mix of 2%. Similarly, the company gained international volume share in the non-alcoholic ready-to-drink beverage.
Going ahead, Coca-Cola expects earnings on a comparable currency basis to witness 4 – 6% growth. That included the structural headwind impact of 3 to 4 points due to comparable currency neutral income and re-franchising. Also, Coca-Cola sees organic revenue growth at 4–5% in the current year, which would be in line with its long-term objectives. The company also plans to buy back shares worth $2.0 – $2.5 billion this year.
Coca-Cola indicated that it would accelerate its re-franchising plans in North America. The company also expressed its commitment to re-franchise all its bottling territories in North America before the end of next year.