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Issue Date: Vol. 52, No. 12, December 2012, Posted On: 11/28/2012

Green Mountain Profits Climb, Shares Soar

Emily Jed
TAGS: Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc., office coffee service, vending, single-cup coffee, K-Cup, Keurig, coffee business, Green Mountain, Keurig Vue, Starbucks, Keurig competitors, Brian Kelley, Brian Kelly

WATERBURY, VT -- Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc.'s fourth-quarter profit climbed 22%, exceeding Wall Street expectations and sending shares soaring as Keurig brewers and K-Cups boosted bottom-line growth.

The Waterbury, VT, roaster earned $91.9 million, or 58¢ a share, in the quarter ended Sept. 29, up from $75.3 million, or 47¢ a share, a year earlier. Green Mountain's net sales for the quarter grew 33% to $946.7 million from $711.9 million last year.

Shares soared $6.45, or 22%, to $35.40 in after-hours trading on the news. Green Mountain's stock price had fallen nearly 60% over the past nine months. The single-cup pioneer has faced increased competition as its key Keurig K-Cup patents expired this fall and when Starbucks launched a competing brewer.

Wall Street analysts had estimated revenues of $902.7 million for the quarter.

The single-cup coffee pioneer sold 1.8 million Keurig brewers during the quarter. Net sales from single-serve packs surged 47% from last year to $700.2 million. Sales of brewers, which includes the high-end Vue model launched early this year, and accessories climbed 30% to $139.1 million.

The company generated about 90% of its total revenues from sales of Keurig machines, K-Cup packs and related accessories. Meanwhile, sales of other products fell 21% from last year to $92.1 million.

Green Mountain's better-than-expected quarterly performance comes as a new chief executive, former Coca-Cola executive Brian Kelley, prepares to take the helm of the company on Dec. 3.

Looking forward to the first quarter, Green Mountain expects adjusted earnings of $0.62 to $0.67 a share, and total sales growth of 14% to 18%.

For fiscal 2013, the company now expects adjusted earnings of $2.64 to $2.74 a share, up from its prior estimate of $2.55 to $2.65 a share. Green Mountain expects fiscal-year 2013 sales growth in the range of 15% to 20%, with sales of $4.44 billion to $4.63 billion.

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