Whitewave Foods 3Q Tops Street’s View

DALLAS (AP) — Organic dairy company Whitewave Foods said Friday that its net income fell 12 percent in the third quarter as expenses climbed. Its adjusted earnings beat Wall Street's view, however, and the stock rose in premarket trading.

The maker of Silk brand food and beverages earned $26.3 million, or 18 cents per share, for the three months ended Sept. 30. A year earlier the company, which was spun off from Dean Foods Co., earned $29.8 million, or 20 cents per share.

Excluding certain items, earnings rose to 16 cents per share. Analysts predicted adjusted earnings of 15 cents per share, according to a FactSet poll.

Shares of Whitewave, which went public last month, gained 5 cents to $15.65 before the market open.

Total operating costs and expenses rose to $172 million from $135.7 million.

Revenue climbed 13 percent to $574.9 million from $509.6 million. Adjusted revenue was $580.8 million.

Wall Street expected higher revenue of $585.7 million.

Whitewave said that adjusted sales for its North American plant-based foods and beverages unit increased more than 20 percent mostly because of the strength of Silk PureAlmond. Adjusted sales for the coffee creamers and beverages division — which includes coffee creamers under the International Delight, Land O'Lakes, Silk and Horizon Organic brands — rose more than 20 percent as well.

The company also posted a sales increase for its premium dairy unit. The Alpro European plant-based foods and beverages division reported a high-single digit rise in sales on a constant currency basis.

Whitewave expects fourth-quarter adjusted earnings of 16 cents to 18 cents per share and full-year adjusted earnings of 58 cents to 60 cents per share.

Analysts expect fourth-quarter earnings of 18 cents per share and 2012 earnings of 58 cents per share.