General Mills price target raised to $66 from $63 at BMO Capital » 08:1407/0207/02/20
BMO Capital analyst…
BMO Capital analyst Kenneth Zaslow raised the firm's price target on General Mills to $66 from $63 and keeps a Market Perform rating on the shares. The company's Q4 earnings topped consensus due to a favorable operating leverage, lower merchandising costs, and lower taxes, which "more than offset" increased operating costs, though its lack of guidance for FY21 on heightened macro uncertainty implies some potential downside earnings risk, the analyst tells investors in a research note.
General Mills CEO: Our business accelerated over the past three months » 18:2307/0107/01/20
In an interview on…
In an interview on CNBC's Mad Money, Jeff Harmening said the company had a good year going into the pandemic. He is "most proud" of the leverage ratio and cash flow, which is even better than earnings. Blue Buffalo is "everything we thought it would be," he said. The company's international business is strong, according to Harmening.
General Mills 'pleased' with performance of Blue Buffalo in Q4 » 09:4107/0107/01/20
Says North America retail…
Says North America retail sales "off to great start" in Q1.
General Mills says gained penetration across all categories » 09:2507/0107/01/20
Has seen "outsized…
Has seen "outsized growth" in e-commerce, particularly in U.S. E-commerce accounted for roughly 9% of sales coming out of Q4.
General Mills says retailers pulled down inventory in Q4 » 09:2007/0107/01/20
Says promotional levels…
Says promotional levels moving back to normal coming out of Q4. Says trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic will be a big determinant of growth. Expects the company will grow in first three quarters relative to pre-pandemic levels. "Confident" in emerging from pandemic as as stronger company. Says marketing is "particularly good" right now. "Pleased" with progress on debt leverage. Comments taken from Q4 earnings conference call.
General Mills reverses, now down 1.5% to $60.70 in pre-market trading 07:3307/0107/01/20
General Mills up 2% after reporting Q4 results 07:1007/0107/01/20
General Mills outlines 3 'key priorities' for FY21 » 07:0807/0107/01/20
In its Q4 earnings…
In its Q4 earnings release, General Mills outlined three key priorities for fiscal 2021 that will allow it to deliver competitive performance in the short term while continuing to advance its long-term goals: "1. Compete effectively, everywhere we play, leading to increased brand penetration, competitive service levels, strengthened customer partnerships, and market share gains in the company's key categories. General Mills expects net sales growth in fiscal 2021 will be positively impacted by its superior execution as well as elevated at-home food demand, relative to the pre-pandemic period. The company anticipates headwinds to fiscal 2021 net sales growth from comparisons against the 53rd week, the extra month of Pet results, and the pandemic-related increase in demand in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020. Additionally, fiscal 2021 net sales growth may be negatively impacted by a potential reduction in consumers' at-home food inventory, which has been elevated during the pandemic; 2. Drive efficiency to fuel investment. The company anticipates that the combination of benefits from its HMM initiatives and volume leverage and headwinds from input cost inflation, increased investment in brands and capabilities, higher costs to service elevated demand, and higher ongoing health and safety-related expenses will result in an adjusted operating profit margin that is approximately in line with fiscal 2020 levels; 3. Reduce leverage to increase financial flexibility. The company expects to make further progress in fiscal 2021 in reducing its net-debt-to-adjusted-EBITDA ratio, which stood at 3.2x at the end of fiscal 2020."
General Mills not currently providing FY21 financial guidance » 07:0607/0107/01/20
General Mills said in its…
General Mills said in its Q4 earnings release, "General Mills expects the largest factor impacting its fiscal 2021 performance will be relative balance of at-home versus away-from-home consumer food demand. This balance will be determined by factors such as consumers' ability and willingness to eat in restaurants, the proportion of people working from home, the reopening of schools, and changes in consumers' income levels. While the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly influenced each of these factors in recent months, the magnitude and duration of its future impact remains highly uncertain. As a result, the company is not currently providing an outlook for fiscal 2021 growth in organic net sales, adjusted operating profit, and adjusted diluted EPS. The company expects consumer concerns about COVID-19 virus transmission and the recession to drive elevated demand for food at home, relative to pre-pandemic levels. The company is tracking the level of virus control, the possibility of a second-wave outbreak, the availability of a vaccine, GDP growth, unemployment rates, consumer confidence, and wage growth, among other factors, to assess the likely magnitude and duration of elevated at-home food demand."
General Mills says higher at-home food demand accelerated net sales in N America » 07:0507/0107/01/20
General Mills said in its…
General Mills said in its Q4 earnings release, "The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on consumer demand across the company's major markets, including driving an unprecedented increase in demand for food at home and a corresponding decrease in away-from-home food demand resulting from efforts to reduce virus transmission. The company estimates that at-home food represented approximately 85 percent of its pre-pandemic worldwide net sales and away-from-home food represented the remaining 15 percent. In the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020, elevated at-home food demand accelerated net sales growth in the North America Retail segment, where a significant share of net sales comes from categories that were most impacted by at-home eating, including meals, baking, and cereal. The impact of elevated at-home demand was less pronounced in the Europe & Australia segment, reflecting its lower proportion of net sales in those categories. The Pet segment experienced increased demand early in the fourth quarter from stock-up purchasing, which partially unwound by the end of the quarter. Lower away-from-home food demand reduced growth for the Convenience Stores & Foodservice and Asia & Latin America segments. During the global pandemic, General Mills' most important objectives remain the continued health and safety of its employees and the ongoing ability to serve consumers around the world. The company has implemented employee safety measures, based on guidance from the CDC and WHO, across all its supply chain facilities, including proper hygiene, social distancing, mask use, and temperature screenings. To date, all General Mills manufacturing and distribution facilities have continued to operate without significant disruption related to COVID-19. The company has risen to meet the needs of its communities around the world during the pandemic, with a particular focus on food security. During the fourth quarter, General Mills contributed $10 million in monetary and food donations to organizations addressing hunger and food access. In response to changing consumer and customer needs, General Mills has increased its agility and executed with excellence. The company has partnered with its customers to prioritize production of its most important products to increase capacity and maintain strong service levels and has adapted content on its food websites to encourage cooking education and drive stronger E-commerce sales. Additionally, the company has taken actions to reinforce its healthy liquidity position by refinancing short-term debt, and it has maintained its strong capital discipline, which helped contribute to a significant increase in free cash flow generation in fiscal 2020. General Mills is focused on delivering superior execution during the COVID-19 situation while continuing to invest in its brands and capabilities to ensure it emerges from the pandemic a stronger company in a position to generate consistent, profitable growth and top-tier returns for its shareholders."