Mondelez Gains Most Since April Amid Peltz PressureDuane D. Stanford
Mondelez International Inc., the maker of snacks such as Oreo cookies and Ritz crackers, rose the most in three months as it boosted its dividend and share buyback amid pressure from activist investor Nelson Peltz.
The shares climbed 3.7 percent to $32.41 at 10:44 a.m. in New York, after earlier advancing as much as 5.3 percent, the biggest gain since April 19. The Deerfield, Illinois-based company gained 23 percent this year through yesterday as the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index advanced 19 percent.
Mondelez said in a statement yesterday that it will raise the quarterly dividend 7.7 percent to 14 cents a share and the stock repurchase authorization to as much as $6 billion from $1.2 billion. Peltz, whose Trian Fund Management LP holds a 2.3 percent stake and is one of the company’s largest shareholders, has pushed for a merger with PepsiCo Inc.
“My focus remains on creating great value for our shareholders with the assets of Mondelez,” Chief Executive Officer Irene Rosenfeld said yesterday in an interview, declining to say whether she has met with Trian or reviewed its proposal.
Second-quarter profit excluding some items was 37 cents a share. The average of 17 estimates compiled by Bloomberg was 34 cents.
Revenue for the quarter rose less than 1 percent to $8.6 billion, in line with analysts’ average estimate. Sales in emerging markets grew 9.7 percent, helped by Brazil, Russia, India and China. Net income fell 40 percent to $616 million, or 34 cents a share, from $1.03 billion, or 58 cents, a year earlier.
The dividend, increased from 13 cents, is payable Oct. 15 to shareholders of record as of Sept 30.