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Hillshire Brands Reports Full Year Earnings Above Guidance Range; Raises Dividend And Announces Plans To Repurchase Shares

The Hillshire Brands Company (NYSE: HSH) today reported earnings for the fourth quarter and full fiscal year 2013.
  • Fiscal Year 2013 adjusted 1 diluted EPS of $1.72; reported diluted EPS of $1.49
  • Full-year net sales increased slightly, in line with guidance, with both operating segments showing growth
  • Adjusted operating income increased $40 million in the fiscal year; reported operating income increased $221 million
  • Fiscal 2014 adjusted diluted EPS expected to be flat to down mid-single digits
  • Dividend will increase 40% to $0.70 per share on an annualized basis
  • Company targeting repurchases of approximately $200 million of stock over the next two fiscal years

CEO Perspective

“In this pivotal transition year, we are pleased with the progress we made on our plans to deliver strong and sustainable shareholder returns. This affirms our confidence in the underlying business and enables us to return more cash to shareholders,” said Sean Connolly, president and chief executive officer of The Hillshire Brands Company.

“Our strategy of strengthening our core brands through increased MAP and innovation worked well as our strong businesses became stronger and we made progress on our challenged businesses. We also achieved our fiscal 2013 savings targets and identified additional efficiency initiatives. We recognize our work is not done, and we will continue our efforts to strengthen our portfolio,” added Connolly.

“As we look to fiscal 2014, we expect performance to gain momentum through the year. First half results will reflect lapping of fiscal 2013 favorability, near-term inflation, and competitive dynamics. Second half performance will be fueled by a robust innovation slate and the benefit of our cost savings programs. As we exit fiscal 2014, our company will be significantly stronger versus where we started, delivering solid growth and well-positioned for fiscal 2015.”

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