Central Garden & Pet sees FY19 EPS of $1.80 'or higher', consensus $1.96
The company expects overall revenue growth in the mid-single digits for fiscal 2019 with organic revenue growth consistent with its long-term annual target of 2% to 3%. In addition, EBITDA, which the company defines as operating income plus depreciation and amortization, is expected to grow in the mid-single-digits, with organic EBITDA growth in the upper-single digits. The company also expects earnings per fully-diluted share of $1.80 or higher for fiscal 2019, a decrease from fiscal 2018 GAAP and non-GAAP earnings. There are a number of factors that the company expects will negatively impact the comparability of fiscal 2019 EPS with fiscal 2018 EPS, with the greatest impact in the company's first half of the fiscal year. The first factor is the timing of the company's recent Bell Nursery acquisition. The company previously estimated that its fiscal 2018 earnings were approximately $0.10 higher in fiscal 2018 than if it had Bell Nursery in its results for the full fiscal year. Fiscal 2019 will have a full year of Bell Nursery, including two quarters of losses that were prior to the acquisition in fiscal 2018 and not present in fiscal 2018 results. The second factor expected to negatively impact EPS is the higher projected tax rate for fiscal 2019 compared with fiscal 2018. The impact of these two items is expected to negatively impact fiscal 2019 EPS by approximately 25c when compared with fiscal 2018.