Dean Foods reports Q3 loss of US$1.54B as company takes US$1.9B charge to write down goodwill in dairy business
November 9, 2011
– Dean Foods Company (NYSE: DF) announced today that the Company reported a loss of $8.39 per diluted share, as compared to third quarter 2010 earnings of $0.13 per diluted share. The loss per share in the quarter includes a $1.9 billion, or $1.6 billion net of tax, non-cash goodwill impairment charge, which is described below.
On an adjusted basis, third quarter 2011 diluted earnings per share were $0.18, a 39% increase from $0.13 per adjusted diluted share in the prior year's third quarter. A full reconciliation between GAAP earnings per share and adjusted earnings per share is provided in the tables below.
For the third quarter of 2011, the net loss attributable to Dean Foods totaled $1.5 billion, compared to net income of $24 million in the prior year's third quarter. Adjusted net income for the third quarter was $33 million, compared to adjusted net income of $23 million in the third quarter of 2010.
"The third quarter marks a return to growth for Dean," said Gregg Engles, Chairman and CEO. "Consolidated adjusted operating income increased 5% and adjusted diluted earnings per share increased 39% in the quarter. While Fresh Dairy Direct continued to face challenges in the quarter, WhiteWave-Alpro posted exceptional results and corporate costs declined due to our focus on reducing SG&A costs, resulting in the return to growth in the quarter."
CONSOLIDATED NET SALES
Net sales for the third quarter totaled $3.4 billion, compared to $3.1 billion of net sales in the third quarter of 2010. Net sales for the third quarter increased due to the pass-through of higher dairy and overall commodity costs at Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar and continued solid sales growth at WhiteWave-Alpro, partially offset by lower volumes at Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar.
CONSOLIDATED OPERATING INCOME / LOSS
Consolidated operating loss in the third quarter totaled $1.9 billion, compared to consolidated operating income of $93 million in the third quarter of 2010. Third quarter consolidated adjusted operating income totaled $108 million, a 5% increase from $103 million in the third quarter of 2010. The increase in third quarter consolidated adjusted operating income was due to $13.5 million of operating income growth at WhiteWave-Alpro and a $12.5 million decline in corporate expense driven by the Company's ongoing cost savings initiatives, offset by a $21.2 million decline in operating income at Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar.
FRESH DAIRY DIRECT-MORNINGSTAR
Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar fluid milk volumes were essentially flat in the third quarter, compared to the overall industry that experienced a volume decline of approximately 0.9% on a year-over-year basis, based on USDA data and Company estimates. The Company's outperformance of the industry was driven primarily by the addition of new customers. Sales volume in other product categories served by Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar remained below year ago levels. Total volumes from the Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar segment declined 1% from the third quarter of 2010 excluding the impact of divested businesses, or 3.6% in total.
Despite lower volumes, Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar net sales increased 12% to $2.9 billion from $2.6 billion in net sales for the third quarter of 2010. The increase in net sales for the segment is driven by the pass-through of higher dairy commodity costs. The third quarter average Class I mover, a measure of the Company's cost of milk, was $21.41 per hundred-weight, 8% above the previous quarter and 37% above the third quarter of 2010.
Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar operating income in the third quarter was $95 million, a decrease of 18% from the $116 million reported in the third quarter of 2010. The year-over-year decline in operating income is primarily the result of continued soft volumes in non-milk categories and pricing pressures across the portfolio, which offset the Company's cost reduction initiatives.
WHITEWAVE – ALPRO
For the third quarter of 2011, the WhiteWave-Alpro segment reported net sales of $531 million, 11% above third quarter 2010 net sales of $478 million due to continued strong growth across the product portfolio. Among the key brands at WhiteWave-Alpro, net sales of Horizon Organic® branded milk increased low-double digits in the third quarter. Branded creamer sales, which includes both International Delight® and LAND O LAKES® creamers, increased mid-teens on continued strength behind International Delight and other innovation. Silk® sales increased mid-single digits on continued strength of Silk PureAlmond® and Silk PureCoconut®. Alpro sales increased low-single digits in the quarter on a constant currency basis, and high-single digits after currency translation.
On a reported basis, segment operating income in the third quarter for WhiteWave-Alpro was $52 million, 39% above the $37 million reported in third quarter of 2010. On an adjusted basis, which excludes the impact of the 50% interest in the Hero/WhiteWave joint venture that WhiteWave does not own, the segment reported operating income of $53 million, an increase of 34% from $39 million in the third quarter of 2010.
Third quarter 2011 corporate expense totaled $40.3 million, a decrease of 24% from $52.8 million in the third quarter of 2010. The reduction in corporate expense was driven by management's concerted efforts to reduce costs, particularly in selling, general and administrative (SG&A) functions.
Reducing SG&A expense, excluding incentive compensation and advertising expense, is an area of focus for the Company in 2011. In the third quarter these costs were approximately $22 million below third quarter 2010 levels. The Company also continues to make strong progress toward its initiative to reduce supply chain costs by $125 million in 2011, which will complete its initial $300 million cost reduction program that began in 2009. Management continues to see meaningful opportunities to reduce costs in the coming years.
Net cash provided by continuing operations for the nine months ended September 30, 2011 totaled $246 million, compared to $379 million through the third quarter of 2010. Free cash flow provided by continuing operations, which is defined as net cash provided by continuing operations less capital expenditures, totaled $30 million for the first nine months of 2011, compared to $199 million over the same period in 2010. A reconciliation between net cash provided by continuing operations and free cash flow provided by continuing operations is provided in the tables below.
Year-to-date capital expenditures totaled $215 million, compared to $181 million through the first nine months of 2010. Total debt outstanding, net of cash on hand, has decreased by $240 million from year ago levels. Total debt at September 30, 2011, net of $108 million cash on hand, was $3.7 billion. The Company's funded debt to EBITDA ratio, as defined by its credit agreements, was 4.91x as of the end of the third quarter versus a maximum leverage ratio covenant of 5.75x. The current maximum leverage ratio remains in effect until March 31, 2012, when it steps down to 5.50x. The Company continues to focus on reducing its overall leverage and expects to exit 2011 with a leverage ratio below 4.75x.
Industry conditions over the past few years affecting both consumption and pricing in Fresh Dairy Direct product categories culminated in a change in the Company's outlook for that business. As a result, the Company performed an interim step one analysis of the goodwill associated with the Fresh Dairy Direct reporting unit in the third quarter. This testing determined that the implied fair value of Fresh Dairy Direct's goodwill was below its carrying value, resulting in a $1.6 billion, net of tax, non-cash goodwill impairment charge in the quarter. The recorded charge represents the lower end of an estimated range, as a significant amount of work remains to be done to arrive at the final charge. The Company expects to complete the necessary work and adjust the charge in the fourth quarter. The final charge could differ materially from the estimate recorded in the third quarter.
"Like many companies that were built through a series of acquisitions, the Fresh Dairy Direct business accumulated a large amount of goodwill on its balance sheet. As we've discussed over the past few years, changed economic conditions have resulted in increased challenges for the fresh milk processing industry. Industry-wide volume declines and price erosion have lowered the profit outlook for our fresh dairy business. As a result of these challenges, and our view that they are unlikely to improve materially, we performed an interim goodwill analysis of the Fresh Dairy Direct business. This analysis determined the fair value of the Fresh Dairy Direct reporting unit was below its carrying value," continued Mr. Engles.
"There are three things to keep in mind related to the impairment charge: first, the charge is an accounting adjustment reflecting significantly changed industry conditions that have affected both consumption and pricing across Fresh Dairy Direct's key categories, and that we believe will continue to impact Fresh Dairy Direct going forward. Second, this charge is related only to the Fresh Dairy Direct business. The WhiteWave, Alpro, and Morningstar businesses have not been affected by these conditions to the same degree as Fresh Dairy Direct, and we believe their fair values remain in excess of their carrying values. Third, this is a non-cash charge and has no impact on our operations, cash flows, or financial covenant compliance."
"Looking ahead, recent trends continue across the business. Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar continues to face a difficult volume and pricing environment," said Engles. "We expect this to continue into the fourth quarter. However, results should benefit from our continued focus on cost reduction across the business, moderating dairy and other commodity costs, and typical fourth quarter seasonality that has a beneficial mix component.
"At WhiteWave-Alpro, strong top-line trends continue as we enter the seasonally strongest quarter of the year. We therefore expect WhiteWave-Alpro to have a solid end to the year, with full year segment operating income to grow in the high-teens.
"Corporate costs will continue to be a tailwind for the business as our sharp focus on SG&A reduction will drive significant year over year savings in the fourth quarter. All in, we expect fourth quarter adjusted diluted earnings per share to step up from third quarter levels to between $0.20 and $0.25 per share resulting in full year 2011 adjusted diluted earnings per share of between $0.69 and $0.74 per share."
CONFERENCE CALL WEBCAST
A webcast to discuss the Company's financial results and outlook will be held at 9:30 a.m. ET today and may be heard live by visiting the "Webcast" section of the Company's website at www.deanfoods.com. A slide presentation will accompany the webcast.
ABOUT DEAN FOODS
Dean Foods is one of the leading food and beverage companies in the United States and a European leader in branded soy foods and beverages. The Company's Fresh Dairy Direct-Morningstar segment is the largest U.S. processor and distributor of milk, creamers, and cultured dairy products. These offerings are marketed under more than 50 local and regional dairy brands, as well as through private labels. The WhiteWave-Alpro segment produces and sells an array of branded dairy, soy and plant-based beverages and foods. WhiteWave brands, including Silk® soy, almond and coconut milk, Horizon Organic® milk and dairy products, International Delight® coffee creamers, and LAND O LAKES® creamers, are category leaders and consumer favorites. Alpro is the pan-European leader in branded soy food products.