Molson Coors Brewing Co. said Tuesday that its first-quarter net income dropped 4 percent, hurt by the cost of its pending acquisition of StarBev, but earnings still topped analysts' expectations thanks to higher beer prices.
The brewer also shuffled its executive ranks, naming a new head for the unit that will hold StarBev, a new CEO for its U.K. and Ireland business and a new chief financial officer.
The maker of Miller Lite and Coors Lite said it earned $79.5 million for the three months through March 31. That's down from $82.9 million a year earlier. On a per-share basis, earnings were unchanged at 44 cents as the company had fewer shares outstanding.
Excluding one-time items such as costs related to its StarBev acquisition, earnings from continuing operations were 47 cents per share. Analysts polled by FactSet forecast 43 cents per share.
Revenue was almost unchanged at $691.4 million from $690.4 million, and was short of the $700.4 million that Wall Street expected. Worldwide beer volume fell less than 1 percent to 9.9 million hectoliters.
The company said higher costs for materials and pensions hurt results in Canada and the U.K., as did higher marketing spending in the U.K. But earnings climbed in the U.S. because of higher prices and more profitable beers sold.
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