Sonoco Products Co. Elects Richard G. Kyle to Board of Directors
Feb 23 15
Sonoco Products Co. announced that Richard G. Kyle was elected to the Sonoco board of directors on February 10, 2015, with an effective start date of February 19, 2015. Mr. Kyle is president, chief executive officer and board member of The Timken Company. Prior to being elected president and CEO in 2014, Mr. Kyle served as chief operating officer of Timken's Bearings and Power Transmission Group. Mr. Kyle has been appointed to serve on the Audit and Financial Policy Committees of the Board.
Sonoco Products Co. Announces Retirement of Philippe R. Rollier from the Board of Directors
Feb 19 15
Sonoco Products Co. announced that on February 19, 2015, Philippe R. Rollier retired from the Board of Directors of the company having reached the age of 72, the mandatory retirement age for members of the Board.
Sonoco Products Co. Appoints Sundaram Nagajaran to the Board of Directors and Audit and Employee and Public Responsibility Committees of the Board
Feb 13 15
Sonoco Products Co. announced that Sundaram Nagajaran was elected to the Sonoco Board of Directors on February 11, 2015. Mr. Nagarajan is executive vice president of Illinois Tool Works Inc. and has worldwide responsibility for the company's Automotive OEM segment, which produces components and fasteners for automotive-related applications. Mr. Nagarajan has been appointed to serve on the Audit and Employee and Public Responsibility Committees of the Board.
Sonoco Reports Unaudited Consolidated Earnings Results for the Fourth Quarter and Full-Year Ended December 31, 2014; Reports Asset Impairment Charges for the Fourth Quarter Ended December 31, 2014; Provides Earnings Guidance for the First Quarter of 2015; Revises Earnings Guidance for the Year 2015
Feb 12 15
Sonoco reported unaudited consolidated earnings results for the fourth quarter and full-year ended December 31, 2014. For the quarter, the company’s net income attributable to the company was $54.5 million, or $0.53 per diluted share, compared with $54.7 million, or $0.53 per diluted share, in 2013. Base earnings were $67.9 million, or $0.66 per diluted share, compared with $59.9 million, or $0.58 per diluted share, in 2013. Net sales were $1.32 billion, up 8.5%, compared with $1.22 billion in last year's quarter. The increase was driven by a 6% increase in company-wide volume and $64.4 million in sales from businesses acquired during the past twelve months, including $52.2 million from the Weidenhammer acquisition. The year-over-year sales improvement was reduced approximately $32 million by the negative impact of foreign currency translation. Cash generated from operations was $151 million, exceeding the prior year quarter by $34 million despite slightly lower GAAP net income. The year-over-year improvement is primarily attributable to the negative impact on last year's reported operating cash flow of the recharacterization to investing activities of tax credits related to the Company's biomass boiler cogeneration project. Also contributing to the improvement were higher current quarter non-cash expense charges and a slightly greater favorable net change in working capital. Net capital expenditures were $40 million compared with $27 million during the same period in 2013. Income before income taxes and equity in earnings of affiliates was $78.395 million against $73.792 million a year ago.
For the year, the company’s net sales were $5.01 billion, up 3.4%, compared with $4.85 billion in 2013. The increase was mostly due to increased volumes and acquisitions, partially offset by the negative impact of foreign exchange. Net income attributable to the company was $239.2 million, or $2.32 per diluted share, up 9.2% from $219.1 million, or $2.12 per diluted share, for 2013. Current year earnings were negatively impacted by after-tax charges of $22.7 million, or $0.22 per diluted share, consisting of restructuring costs, asset impairment charges, acquisition expenses, and acquisition inventory step-up costs, partially offset by excess property insurance proceeds. Base earnings were $261.9 million, or $2.54 per diluted share, compared with $237.5 million, or $2.30 per diluted share in 2013. The 10.3% increase in base earnings stemmed from manufacturing productivity improvements, a positive price/cost relationship, volume growth, proceeds from a legal settlement, acquisitions and lower pension expense. These favorable factors were partially offset by higher labor, maintenance, management incentive and other operating costs. Cash generated from operations was $418 million, compared with $538 million in the same period in 2013. Net capital expenditures were $169 million compared with $168 million in 2013. Income before income taxes and equity in earnings of affiliates was $230.198 million against $208.366 million a year ago.
For the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2014, the company reported asset impairment charges of $4.016 million against $0.886 million a year ago.
The company expects first quarter 2015 base earnings to be in the range of $0.56 to $0.61 per diluted share.
The company expects its 2015 base earnings per diluted share to be in the range of $2.60 and $2.70 with a target of $2.65 per diluted share, a decrease of $0.03 from what was communicated on December 5, 2014. This change is due to an increase in the expected negative effect of foreign exchange. The company's guidance assumes a net $0.26 per share improvement from the company's base operations stemming from a combination of volume growth, a positive price/cost relationship, productivity gains and lower average diluted shares outstanding. In addition, the company expects Weidenhammer to contribute approximately $0.09 per share of incremental base earnings accretion. Offsetting these improvements is $0.24 per share in projected negative items, including $0.09 from higher pension expense, with the remainder due to higher depreciation and other expenses, increased taxes and the negative effect of foreign exchange. The company's 2015 guidance assumes a 32% effective tax rate on base earnings. The company is projecting cash from operations in 2015 to be approximately $505 million and free cash flow to be $150 million. The projected year-over-year improvement in cash from operations is largely driven by expected higher earnings, including higher non-cash depreciation and amortization expenses, and lower pension contributions. Capital spending, net of proceeds from dispositions, is expected to increase to approximately $220 million in 2015 due primarily to planned investments in the company's consumer-related businesses. After considering an assumed $134 million in cash dividends to shareholders, the resulting $150 million of projected free cash flow is expected to be used primarily to reduce debt.