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ConAgra Foods, Inc., (NYSE: CAG) one of North America’s leading food companies, today reported results for the fiscal 2013 fourth quarter ended May 26, 2013. Diluted EPS from continuing operations was $0.45 for the fiscal fourth quarter, up significantly from $(0.21) in the year-ago period. Excluding $0.15 per diluted share of net expense in the current quarter, and $0.72 of net expense in the year-ago period, from items impacting comparability, current-quarter diluted EPS from continuing operations of $0.60 was 18% above the comparable $0.51 earned in the year-ago period.
Diluted EPS from continuing operations for the full fiscal 2013 was $1.85 as reported, up 65% over the $1.12 earned in fiscal 2012; after adjusting for items impacting comparability in the current and prior year, fiscal 2013 diluted EPS from continuing operations was $2.16, up 17% over $1.84 earned last fiscal year. Items impacting comparability in fiscal 2013 and fiscal 2012 are summarized toward the end of this release and reconciled for Regulation G purposes on page 12.
Gary Rodkin, ConAgra Foods’ chief executive officer, said, “We are pleased to have driven a 17% increase in comparable EPS for fiscal 2013, and to have posted comparable year-over-year Consumer Foods volume growth in the fiscal fourth quarter as planned. Today we provided our current view of our strong near-term and long-term EPS growth potential, taking into account an increase in expected synergies from the recent Ralcorp transaction, as well as the benefit of our ongoing innovation, marketing, and margin management initiatives. We are confident in our strategy and our ability to execute it. After the strong fiscal 2013 performance from the Commercial Foods segment, we will be dealing with some profit headwinds related to that segment in fiscal 2014, and we expect to manage through these and still post very good EPS growth for the fiscal year. As we look to the longer term, given the opportunities ahead of us, we expect to grow comparable EPS by at least 10% per year from fiscal 2015-2017; this is expected to result in five consecutive years of double-digit EPS growth, and EPS in excess of $3.00 per share in fiscal 2017.”