UPDATE 3-Smucker Q1 beats Street, backs FY09 view; shares rise

jueves 14 de agosto de 2008 18:04 CEST

(Adds details, analyst's comments, updates share movement)

By Dilipp S. Nag

BANGALORE Aug 14 (Reuters) - Peanut butter and jelly maker J.M. Smucker Co (SJM.N: Cotización) posted better-than-expected quarterly results, as price increases and acquisitions helped offset rising commodity costs, and reaffirmed its fiscal 2009 outlook, sending its shares up 9 percent.

Smucker, known for its namesake jellies and jams, has raised prices of its products over the last several months as it grapples with soaring commodity costs.

The price rises and moderating input costs put the company in a better position going forward, said William Blair & Co analyst Jon Andersen by phone.

The company, which competes with Nestle NESN.VX and Unilever Plc (ULVR.L: Cotización) (UNc.AS: Cotización), has been on an acquisition spree to boost sales. It recently agreed to buy Folgers, the largest U.S. coffee business, from Procter & Gamble Co (PG.N: Cotización). In May, it bought ConAgra Foods Inc's (CAG.N: Cotización) Knott's Berry Farm food brand.

For the first quarter ended July 31, Smucker reported net income of $42.3 million, or 77 cents a share, compared with $40.8 million, or 71 cents a share, a year earlier.

Excluding restructuring, merger and integration costs, the company earned 82 cents a share.

Net sales rose 18 percent to $663.7 million, driven by its acquisitions of the Canadian Carnation canned milk business, Europe's Best Inc and Knott's Berry Farm.   Continuación...