Sari Mannonen has been appointed Vice President, responsible for UPM Biofuels Strategic Business Unit as of 9 August 2016. Mannonen previously worked as Director, Sales and Marketing within UPM Biofuels and was in that role since 2014, responsible for commercial strategy and product launches in Biofuels business. Mannonen has worked for UPM since 2011 in leadership positions and before joining the company she worked for Lindström and Biohit. She will be based in Helsinki and report to Heikki Vappula, Executive Vice President, UPM Biorefining.
Kimberly-Clark Corporation (NYSE: KMB) today reported first quarter 2019 results.
- First quarter 2019 net sales of $4.6 billion decreased 2 percent compared to the year-ago period. Changes in foreign currency exchange rates reduced sales by 5 percent, while organic sales increased 3 percent including higher net selling prices of 4 percent.
- Diluted net income per share for the first quarter was $1.31 in 2019 and $0.26 in 2018.
- First quarter adjusted earnings per share were $1.66 in 2019 and $1.71 in 2018. Adjusted earnings per share exclude certain items described later in this news release.
- The company continues to target full-year 2019 organic sales growth of 2 percent and adjusted earnings per share of $6.50 to $6.70.
Chief Executive Officer Mike Hsu said, “I’m encouraged with our first quarter results. We made excellent progress driving higher selling prices to help offset commodity and currency headwinds. We also continued to launch innovations, pursue our growth priorities and invest in our brands. In addition, we generated $115 million of cost savings and returned $510 million to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases. We are confirming our previous full-year outlook while we maintain a strong focus on executing K-C Strategy 2022 for long-term success.”
First Quarter 2019 Operating Results
Sales of $4.6 billion in the first quarter of 2019 were down 2 percent compared to the year-ago period. Changes in foreign currency exchange rates reduced sales by 5 percent. Organic sales increased 3 percent. Net selling prices rose approximately 4 percent and product mix improved 1 percent, while volumes fell about 2 percent. In North America, organic sales increased 1 percent in both consumer products and K-C Professional. Outside North America, organic sales rose 7 percent in developing and emerging markets and 1 percent in developed markets.
First quarter operating profit was $655 million in 2019 and $247 million in 2018. Results in both periods include charges related to the 2018 Global Restructuring Program. First quarter adjusted operating profit was $807 million in 2019 and $824 million in 2018. Results were impacted by $135 million of higher input costs, driven by $60 million in pulp and $45 million in other raw materials. In addition, foreign currency translation effects reduced operating profit by $25 million and transaction effects also negatively impacted the comparison. Advertising spending also increased year-on-year. On the other hand, results benefited from higher net selling prices, $60 million of cost savings from the 2018 Global Restructuring Program and $55 million of cost savings from the company’s FORCE (Focused On Reducing Costs Everywhere) program.
The first quarter effective tax rate was 24.6 percent in 2019 and 59.8 percent in 2018, which included an $82 million net charge associated with U.S. tax reform related matters. The first quarter adjusted effective tax rate was 23.7 percent in 2019 and 22.0 percent in 2018. The rate in 2018 benefited from the resolution of certain tax matters.
Kimberly-Clark’s share of net income of equity companies in the first quarter of 2019 was $27 million, even with the year-ago period. Results were impacted by higher input costs, but benefited from organic sales growth and cost savings.