For the first nine months of its fiscal year ended January 31, 2012, Brown-Forman Corporation (NYSE:BFA) (NYSE:BFB) increased net sales on a reported basis 8% to $2.8 billion, grew diluted earnings per share 2% to $2.83 and improved reported operating income 1% to $638 million. Net sales on a reported basis for its third quarter were $959 million, diluted earnings per share were $0.93 and reported operating income was $206 million. Excluding the net effect of the Hopland based wine business 1 , diluted earnings per share were up 8% for the first nine months and 1% for the quarter.
Year-to-date underlying 2 results continued to outpace last fiscal year as shown in the table below:
|Growth in Underlying||Growth in Reported|
|Net Sales||Operating Income||Net Sales||Operating Income|
|Fiscal 2012 YTD||8%||8%||8%||1%|
|Fiscal Year 2011||4%||6%||6%||20%|
Paul Varga, the company’s chief executive officer said, “Our third quarter performance continued our acceleration in year-to-date underlying growth rates compared to last year, with year-to-date underlying net sales growth of 8%, double the 4% growth rate we achieved for the full 2011 fiscal year. Our underlying results were in line with our expectations for the quarter and year-to-date and we believe are on par with overall industry growth rates. As a result, we are confirming our full-year guidance while narrowing the range.”