While posting strong second-quarter results, Marysville, Ohio-based Scotts Miracle-Gro is hoping for more cooperative weather.
Scotts posted net sales of $1.13 billion for the quarter ended April 2, up 8% from the same quarter last year. Net income increased 50% to $177.6 million.
For the quarter, company-wide adjusted gross margin rate increased 41.1% compared with 39.6% a year earlier. The improvement was due to the benefit of lower commodity costs, as well as supply chain efficiencies and a favorable product mix.
Still, a slow start to the 2011 selling season due to unfavorable weather, coupled with strong early season purchases last year, led to a 7% decline in year-to-date consumer purchases entering May.
"While faced with the challenge of a late break to the season, we remain optimistic in our full-year outlook," said Jim Hagedorn, chairman and CEO. "The consumer remains highly engaged as demonstrated by strong purchase activity whenever and wherever the weather has cooperated. Retailer support also remains strong as our retail partners continue to show commitment to the overall category, but especially to our brands."
Consumer purchases of Scotts products at its largest retailers increased 2% on a year-to-date basis through March, the company said.