Hershey records positive financial year due to strong US market
The US-headquartered Hershey Company has confirmed annual sales of $7,986.3 million for 2019, up by 2.5% for the year, attributed to strong domestic sales.
Furthermore, the company was up for the last financial quarter, recording consolidated net sales of $2,068.1m, representing an increase of 4.0%.
“We had a strong year in 2019 with accelerated business performance and differentiated financial results,” said Michele Buck, The Hershey company president and chief executive officer. “This was driven by momentum in our core U.S. confection portfolio in both retail takeaway and margin expansion, incremental and profitable international growth, and further expansion of our snacking portfolio. We continued investing in our brands, capabilities, and people and have confidence we will deliver another year of high-quality financial results in 2020.”
Hershey’s North America net sales were $1,812.7m in the fourth quarter of 2019, an increase of 3.8% versus the same period last year.
North America advertising and related consumer marketing expenses increased 5.1% in the fourth quarter of 2019 versus the same period last year driven by advertising. Gross margin gains driven by net price realisation and favourable commodities resulted in a segment income increase of 7.0% to $519.8m in the fourth quarter of 2019, compared to $485.7m in the fourth quarter of 2018.
Fourth-quarter 2019 net sales for Hershey’s International and Other segment increased 5.8% versus the same period last year, to $255.4m. International and Other segment income increased 67.9% to $14.1m in the fourth quarter of 2019 driven by gains from volume growth and gross margin expansion along with increasingly efficient advertising and related consumer marketing expenses.