CAMDEN, N.J.--()--At the Consumer Analyst Group of New York (CAGNY) conference in Boca Raton, Fla., Campbell Soup Company (NYSE:CPB) President and Chief Executive Officer Denise Morrison provided an update on the company’s progress against its strategies to return the company to sustainable, profitable top-line growth.
“Our plans for stabilizing and rebuilding the profitability of our Soup and Simple Meals business in North America are working.”
Under Morrison’s leadership, Campbell has focused on three key growth strategies:
- Stabilize and then profitably grow North America soup and simple meals;
- Expand the company’s international presence; and
- Continue to drive growth in healthy beverages and baked snacks.
Morrison said, “To realize our strategic vision, we must fulfill a dual mandate. We committed ourselves to work diligently and creatively to expand into higher-growth spaces, to engage with new consumers and to build our business in new geographies. But at the same time, it is imperative that we maintain the strength of our core business and our intense engagement−over many, many decades−with our loyal consumer base.”
In its U.S. Soup and Simple Meals business, Campbell is rebuilding strength in the core and investing in innovation to maintain the appeal and excitement of its brands with new recipes and line extensions that provide taste adventure. Morrison said, “Our plans for stabilizing and rebuilding the profitability of our Soup and Simple Meals business in North America are working.”
Morrison also described efforts in other parts of the business, including Healthy Beverages. Campbell plans to introduce “V8 V-Fusion Refreshers,” a new line that offers a crisper, lighter taste for consumers seeking greater refreshment. The company will continue to build on its launch last fiscal year of “V8 V-Fusion + Energy,” a line of energy drinks made with green tea, as well as new products to drive continued growth in its Global Baking and Snacking business.
Morrison highlighted Campbell’s breakthrough innovation efforts as a key driver for accelerated growth. This innovation process led to “Campbell’s Go” soups and “Campbell’s” Skillet Sauces, introduced earlier this fiscal year. The “Campbell’s” Skillet Sauces line represents the first entrant in a platform of dinner sauces the company has planned. While “Campbell’s” Skillet Sauces target the stovetop, the next set of Campbell’s products in this range will feature slow cookers, which are now in more than 80 percent of U.S. households and used to prepare nearly 500 million meals per year. Sold in pouch packages, the new line of “Campbell’s” Slow Cooker Sauces will be available later this year in four to five varieties, including Sweet Korean BBQ.
Morrison noted that Campbell’s acquisition of Bolthouse Farms provides the foundation for a new platform to accelerate growth, with its market-leading positions in the super-premium beverages segment. “Bolthouse Farms gives us strong credentials in the packaged fresh category in the retail perimeter–a terrain much broader than beverages and salad dressings. We’ve identified some very compelling opportunities in this arena and we’re developing plans to pursue them,” said Morrison. Packaged fresh is a $12 billion category with a growth rate estimated to be six to seven percent–well ahead of the food industry average.
Morrison also discussed international expansion and the pursuit of external development opportunities in priority markets in Asia and Latin America to increase capabilities and build scale. This included recently-announced agreements in Mexico with Grupo Jumex and Conservas La Costeña to expand access to production and distribution capabilities in that market for the company’s beverages, soups and sauces.
“We know that it will take time, patience and fortitude to fulfill our strategic vision. We are under no illusions that this work will proceed in a straight line,” concluded Morrison. “The progress we’ve made in the past eighteen months has been highly gratifying.”
Morrison shared these details with investors and the news media at the CAGNY conference today. A replay of the webcast of the presentation will be available at investor.campbellsoupcompany.com approximately two hours after the conclusion of the presentation.
About Campbell Soup Company
Campbell Soup Company is a manufacturer and marketer of high-quality foods and simple meals, including soup and sauces, baked snacks and healthy beverages. Founded in 1869, the company has a portfolio of market-leading brands, including “Campbell’s,” “Pepperidge Farm,” “Arnott’s” and “V8.” Through its corporate social responsibility program, the company strives to make a positive impact in the workplace, in the marketplace and in the communities in which it operates. Campbell is a member of the Standard & Poor's 500 and the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes. For more information, visit www.campbellsoupcompany.com.
This release contains “forward-looking statements” that reflect the company’s current expectations about the impact of its future plans and performance on sales, earnings, and margins. These forward-looking statements rely on a number of assumptions and estimates that could be inaccurate and which are subject to risks and uncertainties. The factors that could cause the company’s actual results to vary materially from those anticipated or expressed in any forward-looking statement include (1) the impact of strong competitive responses to the company’s efforts to leverage its brand power in the market; (2) the risks associated with trade and consumer acceptance of the company’s initiatives; (3) the company’s ability to realize projected cost savings and benefits; (4) the company’s ability to manage changes to its business processes; (5) the increased significance of certain of the company’s key trade customers; (6) the impact of fluctuations in the supply or costs of energy and raw and packaging materials; (7) the impact of portfolio changes, including the Bolthouse Farms acquisition; (8) the uncertainties of litigation; (9) the impact of changes in currency exchange rates, tax rates, interest rates, debt and equity markets, inflation rates, economic conditions and other external factors; (10) the impact of unforeseen business disruptions in one or more of the company’s markets due to political instability, civil disobedience, armed hostilities, natural disasters or other calamities; and (11) other factors described in the company’s most recent Form 10-K and subsequent Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company disclaims any obligation or intent to update the forward-looking statements in order to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release.