HERSHEY, Pa. — The Hershey reported a net sales increase of nearly 6%, driven by core brand volume. Consolidated net sales were $1.8 billion for the first quarter ended March 31, compared with $1.7 billion for the same period last year.
Reported net income for the first quarter of 2013 was $242 million compared with $199 million for the same period last year.
“Hershey’s first quarter results, driven by solid volume growth across core brands, represent a good start to the year,” said John P. Bilbrey, president and CEO, the Hershey Company. “We maintained our retail momentum in the U.S. and key international markets. Specifically, first quarter U.S. marketplace performance was strong, driven by solid volume and unit trends across most major pack types resulting in market share gains in every channel where we compete. The broader launch of Brookside Foods Ltd. (Brookside) products in the U.S. is off to a good start and we’re excited about the potential of the brand. Despite the Easter season being shorter versus last year, most customers had a higher percentage dollar sell through versus last year with preliminary seasonal market share results in line with expectations. We’re focused on executing against our plans and are confident that in 2013 we’ll continue to drive core brand volume growth in U.S. and international markets.”
Hershey’s U.S. candy, mint and gum retail takeaway for the 12 weeks ended March 23, excluding the impact of Easter seasonal activity in last year’s period as well as the current one was up nearly 9%, in the expanded all outlet combined plus convenience store channels, which accounts for approximately 90% of the company’s U.S. retail business. U.S. market share, including Easter seasonal activity in last year’s period as well as the current one, was up in every channel. This performance reflects solid market share gains across most core brands including Hershey’s, Reese’s, Hershey’s Kisses, Ice Breakers as well as Brookside.
“We're very pleased with the start to 2013 and expect to build on our momentum,” continued Bilbrey. “In the first quarter we achieved Brookside distribution and consumer trial objectives. In the second quarter we'll track repeat purchases in assessing our current outlook and will then have an indication if there is upside potential to the brand’s full year net sales target. I'm also excited about the new products launching over the remainder of the year in U.S. and international markets, including, Kit Kat Minis, Hershey's Kisses Deluxe and Hershey's solid chocolate products in China and the Hershey's Mais wafer product in Brazil. The investments we're making in our business in the form of capabilities and innovation position us to succeed in the marketplace and should benefit the Company in the near and long term,” Bilbrey concluded.