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US: PepsiCo FY profit down on charges

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PepsiCo has reported a 9% drop in full-year net earnings, due to write-down charges in the fourth quarter.

PepsiCo said today (13 February) that reported net profit for the 12 months to 27 December fell by 9% to US$5.1bn. Profit in the fourth quarter tumbled 43% to $1.2bn.

The soft drinks giant blamed the fall on one-off charges related to its restructuring programme, as well as charges incurred by The Pepsi Bottling Group and commodity costs.

Underlying net income, the group said, rose by 5% for the year, in-line with the company's guidance.

PepsiCo's full-year sales rose by 10% to $43.25bn, although the rate of growth slowed to 3% in the fourth quarter.

Indra Nooyi, PepsiCo chairwoman and CEO, said the firm had delivered "solid" results in an "extremely difficult year". She said that 2009 would remain challenging. 

PepsiCo announced in October that it planned to cut 3,300 jobs worldwide, as part of a "productivity programme" designed to yield pre-tax savings of $1.2bn over the next three years.

The group reiterated today that it expects to realise of $350m-$400m of the savings in 2009.

In its outlook, the firm said that it expects mid to high single-digit rises in net revenue and core earnings per share in 2009. The group added that it intends to spend up to $2.5bn repurchasing shares during the year, and will also take a $640m after-tax charge related to investment in its pension fund.


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