By Lorraine Mirabella, The Baltimore Sun
5:33 PM EDT, September 27, 2012
Spice maker McCormick & Co. Inc. said Thursday that its profit grew more than 13 percent in the third quarter, thanks to new products, acquisitions and strength in emerging markets.
The Sparks-based maker of spices and flavorings raised its full-year earnings expectations to a range of $3.03 to $3.08 per share to reflect a more favorable tax rate.
For the three months ended Aug. 31, McCormick reported net income of $104.4 million, or 78 cents a share, compared with net income of $92 million, or 69 cents a share, in the comparable period a year earlier.
"Our third quarter financial results demonstrate the effectiveness of McCormick's growth initiatives, even in a challenging economic environment," Alan D. Wilson, chairman and chief executive, said in a statement.
Sales grew 6 percent to $977.7 million in the third quarter, up from $920.4 million in the comparable period a year earlier, the company reported. Acquisitions completed last year accounted for about half the increase, the company said.
McCormick also raised prices in response to higher raw material and packaging costs, the company said.
Wilson noted that profits grew in McCormick's consumer and industrial businesses. The industrial business supplies restaurants and food manufacturers.
Emerging markets accounted for 14 percent of third-quarter sales, Wilson said.
The company expects to increase its emerging markets presence with the planned $141 million acquisition of Wuhan Asia-Pacific Condiments Co., a popular bouillon maker in China. The acquisition is expected to close by the middle of next year.
Shares of McCormick closed Thursday at $61.75 a share on the New York Stock Exchange, down $1.14.
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