U.S. food maker H.J. Heinz Co
In a preliminary report on fiscal first quarter results -- due for release on Wednesday -- the company said it earned 75 cents a share. Analysts on average forecast 73 cents for the quarter, ended July 28, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Heinz, which makes Ore-Ida french fries and Smart Ones frozen foods in addition to its namesake ketchup, said sales rose more than 3 percent on an organic basis, which excludes acquisitions, asset sales and currency fluctuation. That equates to 1.6 percent on a reported basis, Heinz said.
The company, which gets more than 60 percent of its sales from outside the United States, has relied on increased sales in emerging markets like Russia, China and Indonesia to help lift sales.
Chairman and CEO William Johnson said in remarks prepared for the annual shareholder meeting that he still expects full-year sales to rise 3 percent to 4 percent, with earnings per share up 7 percent to 10 percent. The forecast is on a constant-currency basis, the company said.
Heinz shares were up 39 cents, or 0.8 percent, at $46.48 in afternoon trade on the New York Stock Exchange.
(Reporting by Brad Dorfman and Martinne Geller; editing by John Wallace)