Brown-Forman Beats Profit Estimates In Q2, Raises Forecast

Kris Alingod – AHN News Contributor

Louiseville, KY, United States (AHN) – Brown-Forman posted second quarter earnings on Thursday, beating profit estimates but falling short of expected revenue. The liquor maker raised its outlook for the full fiscal year.

Net income for the period ended Oct. 31 rose 5 percent to $154 million, or $1.05 per share from $147.3 million, or 99 cents a share.

Revenue improved 1 percent to $905.7 million from $892.9 last year.

The company, whose brands include Finlandia Vodka, Jack Daniel’s and Korbel, cited growth in international markets, particularly in Australia, the United Kingdom, Germany and Turkey. Sales in Mexico, where the company bought Tequila Herradura, were also strong.

The Louisville-based distiller said performance in the United States was weak. In Russia, changes to the distribution structure caused “expected disruption” and affected revenue.

Brown-Forman raised its forecast for earnings in 2011 to $3.18 to $3.42 per share. It cautioned that “several uncertainties” such as the weak global economy, particularly in the eurozone, may affect profits.

Full-year income would depend on whether the sales of Southern Comfort, its 134-year-old flavored liqueur brand, would improve. The company said the brand suffered “difficult comparisons” with some of its ready-to-pour products such as Southern Comfort Sweet Tea and Southern Comfort Hurricane, which were introduced last year.

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