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Hershey Announces Fourth Quarter And Full-Year 2013 Results; Reaffirms Outlook For 2014

Acquisition and integration costs, primarily related to Shanghai Golden Monkey in 2013 and Brookside in 2012, were $4.1 million and $13.4 million, or $0.03 and $0.04 per share-diluted. Additionally, 2012 results were impacted by the aforementioned non-cash goodwill impairment charge of $7.5 million, or $0.03 per share-diluted. As described in the Note, adjusted net income for each year, which excludes these net charges, was $844,320,000, or $3.72 per share-diluted in 2013, compared with $740,040,000, or $3.24 per share-diluted in 2012, an increase of 14.8 percent in adjusted earnings per share-diluted.

In 2014, the Company expects reported earnings per share-diluted of $4.02 to $4.11, including net GAAP charges of about $7 million to $9 million, or $0.02 to $0.03 per share-diluted. This projection, prepared in accordance with GAAP, assumes net business realignment charges related to Project Next Century of $0.01 to $0.02 per share-diluted, non-service-related pension income (NSRPI) of $0.01 to $0.02 per share-diluted as well as acquisition and transaction costs associated with Shanghai Golden Monkey of $0.02 to $0.03 per share-diluted. Despite the impact of these charges, in 2014, reported gross margin is expected to increase around 50 basis points.

Fourth Quarter Performance

Hershey's fourth-quarter net sales increased 11.7 percent, driven primarily by core brand volume growth and new products, a 9.0 point and 3.2 point benefit, respectively. Foreign currency exchange rates were 0.5 points unfavorable. Net sales in North America slightly exceeded expectations driven by a solid holiday season. As expected, fourth quarter net sales outside the U.S. and Canada accelerated, resulting in a 3.5 point contribution to the Company’s overall top-line growth.

Hershey’s U.S. candy, mint and gum (CMG) retail takeaway for the 12 weeks and 52 weeks ended December 28, 2013, in the expanded All Outlet Combined plus convenience store channels (xAOC+C-store), which accounts for approximately 90 percent of our U.S. retail business, was up 5.2 percent and 6.3 percent, respectively, and relatively in line with U.S. net sales. Hershey U.S. CMG market share increased 1.1 points in 2013.

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