Beam profit beats expectations, stands by outlook
May 2 (Reuters) - Beam Inc reported higher-than-expected first-quarter earnings on Thursday, helped by new products and strong demand for its Maker's Mark bourbon and Skinnygirl drinks.
Still, the maker of Jim Beam bourbon, Sauza tequila and Pinnacle vodka stood by its full-year outlook, saying that some of the factors that helped results earlier in the year will reverse themselves later.
The company said it had benefited from the timing of ingredient costs, selling a higher proportion of more-expensive products, price increases and a shift in advertising spending to the second and third quarters from the first quarter.
Net income in the first quarter jumped to $114.5 million, or 71 cents per share, from $79.1 million, or 49 cents per share, a year earlier.
Excluding items, earnings were 64 cents per share. On that basis, analysts on average were expecting 54 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Sales rose 8 percent to $577.7 million.
The company affirmed its full-year goal calling for earnings to grow at a high single-digit percentage rate, before one-time items, from the $2.40 per share it earned in 2012. It said it still expected 2013 free cash flow of $300 million to $350 million.
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