Chiquita Brands Earnings: Swings to a Loss, Falling Short of Estimates

Chiquita Brands International Inc. (NYSE:CQB) swung to a loss in the first quarter, missing analysts’ forecast. Chiquita Brands International and its subsidiaries operate as an international marketer and distributor of bananas and other fresh produce sold under the Chiquita and other brand.

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Chiquita Brands International Earnings Cheat Sheet for the First Quarter

Results: Reported a loss of $11 million (24 cents per diluted share) in the quarter. Chiquita Brands International Inc. had a net income of $24.2 million or 52 cents per share in the year-earlier quarter.

Revenue: Fell 3.8% to $793 million from the year-earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: Chiquita Brands International Inc. reported adjusted net income of 4 cents per share. By that measure, the company fell short of mean estimate of 32 cents per share. It beat the average revenue estimate of $768 million.

Quoting Management: “Our first quarter results were impacted by near-term challenges in our business,” said Fernando Aguirre, chairman and chief executive officer. “In Bananas, lower prices in each of our markets impacted both our revenues and comparable income for the quarter. Our North American banana business remains stable. In Europe, tight banana supply, particularly from Ecuador, helped improve local pricing sequentially during the quarter; however, this was not enough to overcome the impact of higher fuel costs and lower European exchange rates. The constrained supply availability also hampered expected sales volumes.”

Key Stats:

Revenue has fallen in the past four quarters. Revenue declined 6.6% to $721.7 million in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year. The figure fell 1% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year from the year earlier and dropped 5% in the second quarter of the last fiscal year from the year-ago quarter.

The company fell short of estimates last quarter after beating the mark the quarter before with a loss of -12 cents versus a mean estimate of a loss of 17 cents per share.

Looking Forward: Over the last 30 days, analysts have not been optimistic about the company’s next-quarter performance. The average estimate for the second quarter is now 70 cents per share, down from 74 cents. The average estimate for the fiscal year is now 90 cents per share, down from $1.07 sixty days ago.

(Company fundamentals provided by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)

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