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Molson Coors Goes Flat Again

The brewer misses estimates by a mile for the second time in as many quarters.
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Molson Coors

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posted its second dreadful quarter in a row and set plans to restate first-quarter results.

The company cited "headwinds" in Europe, particularly in the U.K., where discounting hurt profits. Molson Coors shares slid 6% in early action Tuesday.

For the second quarter ended June 26, the brewer made $39 million, or 45 cents a share, down from the year-ago $72 million, or $1.90 a share. Excluding special items and merger-related amortization expense, the company reported after-tax income of $105.1 million, or $1.22 a share, for the latest quarter. That's down 12% from a year ago on a pro forma basis and 37 cents short of the Thomson First Call estimate.

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On a pro forma basis, assuming the company had been merged in both periods, Molson Coors posted a 3.8% retail sales drop, a 3.1% sales volume fall and a 49% operating income decline.

"For the remainder of the year, we will focus on making even more progress improving our sales trends in Canada and the U.S.," said CEO Leo Kiely. "In the U.K., we are working to restore volume momentum with targeted sales efforts in both the on-premise and off-premise channels while maintaining the strength of our U.K. brand equities. We're also accelerating a number of U.K. cost-reduction initiatives. Across the enterprise, we will continue our work integrating the operations and organization of the combined Molson and Coors business as we build a more competitive and profitable global beer company."

The company also said it would restate its first-quarter numbers to correct the initial recording of a U.S. deferred tax asset as part of the purchase accounting for its U.K. acquisition in 2002. Because of the change, the company will restate its first-quarter 2005 tax provision and earnings.

The company's restated first-quarter 2005 net loss was $75.7 million, or 88 cents a share, on a pro forma basis. Excluding special items and merger- related amortization expense, after-tax income was $7 million, or 8 cents share, on a pro forma basis, down 86% from a year ago.

Molson Coors originally posted a first-quarter loss of $46.5 million, or 74 cents a share. Excluding merger-related charges of $40.7 million, the company would have reported a loss of $5.1 million, Coors said April 28. At the time, analysts had been expecting a 36-cent profit.

Early Tuesday, Molson Coors fell $4 to $59.82.