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Coca-Cola tops estimates, backs full-year outlook

Amid a shrinking market for sugary, carbonated beverages, Coca-Cola delivered earnings on Wednesday that topped estimates on the top and bottom line, showing its ability to manage the headwinds by focusing on prices and newer products like Coca-Cola Zero Sugar.

Here's how the company did compared to what Wall Street expected:

  • Adjusted EPS: 50 cents vs. 49 cents expected, according to Thomson Reuters
  • Revenue: $9.08 billion vs. $8.72 billion expected, according to Thomson Reuters

The Atlanta beverage giant reported net revenue of $9.08 billion, down 15 percent from the year-ago period, but ahead of analysts' expectations of $8.72 billion.

Total unit case volume, a metric that strips out the impact of foreign exchange and pricing, was even.

On a non-GAAP basis, Coke said it earned 50 cents per shares, up 2 percent from the year-ago.

In reaction to shifting consumer preferences, Coke has focused on innovations and new launches. These include its expansion into ready-to-drink tea and coffee, its launch of Coca-Cola Zero Sugar, and its acquisition of Topo Chico.

Coca-Cola Zero Sugar, which Coke launched in the U.S. this August, doubled its volume growth this quarter compared to last, the company said. By the first quarter of next year, Coke plans to to introduce Coca-Cola Zero Sugar globally.

"I am encouraged with our progress and results in the quarter," said James Quincey, Coke's president and CEO. "Our performance reflects the strength of an organization that is focused on delivering against its financial commitments while also making substantial structural and cultural changes."