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Coca-Cola European Partners posts lower quarterly profit on volume decline

Coca-Cola European Partners PLC's net income fell year over year in the second quarter as the bottler's volume decreased by 4.5% on a comparable basis.

The company reported net income of €293 million, or 60 cents per share, in the quarter that ended June 29, down from €298 million, or 61 cents per share, in the same period in 2017.

On a comparable basis, the bottler's EPS came in at 67 cents, in line with S&P Global Market Intelligence's final second-quarter estimate.

Revenue totaled €3.06 billion, slightly up from €3.05 billion. Revenue per unit case rose 6.0% to €4.70 from €4.43, on a comparable and fx-neutral basis.

Comparable volume by selling day shift stood at 655 million unit cases, down 4.5% from 687 million unit cases. The company said the decline was driven by customer disruption in France, unfavorable weather in Iberia, the impact of new soft drinks taxes in the U.K. and difficult comparables.

Operating profit edged up to €418 million for the quarter from €416 million in the same year-ago quarter.

Year-to-date, Coca-Cola European Partners reported net income of €417 million, or 85 cents per share, down from €445 million, or 91 cents per share, in the same period in 2017.

The bottler maintained its 2018 EPS growth outlook of 6% to 7% on a comparable and fx-neutral basis and raised 2018 free cash flow guidance to a range of €900 million to €950 million.