Up against bad weather, Scotts stumbles in Q3
The challenges from unfriendly weather hit Scotts Miracle-Gro hard in the quarter ended July 2, as sales declined 10% to $1.06 billion.
The decline was driven primarily by poor weather across most of the United States throughout the duration of the lawn and garden season, as well as a more competitive promotional landscape and changes in certain retailer strategies within the mass merchandise channel, the Marysville, Ohio-based company said.
"Through mid-March, consumer purchases of our products in the U.S. were up 13%t, but then the situation changed dramatically," said Jim Hagedorn, chairman and CEO. "The challenges we saw from weather this year are unparalleled during my life-long tenure in this industry. The fact that consumer purchases have been impacted more than we expected is also negatively affecting both sales and gross margin rate."
Net income declined 37% to $11.6 million.
The company said it now expects its adjusted earnings for the year to be in a range of $2.95 to $3.05 per share, compared with the analyst target of $3.19.
"While I am disappointed with the results we are announcing today, I remain confident in our category, our brands, our strategy and our team. That continued confidence in our long-term strategy is reflected in the decision by our board of directors to increase our dividend by 20%. We remain committed to a strategy of using our financial flexibility to drive long-term growth, while also returning cash to shareholders."
One bright spot was Scotts LawnService, which saw an increase in revenue of 1% to $82.4 million.
"We are extremely pleased with the progress of Scotts LawnService, and we continue to see it as an important element of our future success," Hagedorn said. "With the improvements to the business model, we believe SLS can continue to drive growth on both the top and bottom lines."
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Survey: Employee happiness rises at Home Depot
An online career website found Home Depot ranked eighth on a list of companies advancing employee happiness.
CareerBliss.com evaluated more than 250,000 company reviews and ratings from employees to create its top 50 list of happiness improvement. Target showed the biggest increase — up 12.1% to a bliss index of 3.888.
Home Depot ranked eighth on the list, improving 7.964% to a bliss index of 3.772 this year.
A consistent theme seen in a majority of the award recipients in the Top 50 list was a comprehensive benefit plan, according to CareerBliss.com.
Click here for CareerBliss’ top 50 honorees.
All assessments are derived from 2010 and 2011. A minimum of 50 reviews per company were required to qualify for the list. CareerBliss data evaluated the key factors, which impact work happiness, including work-life balance, one’s relationship with their boss and co-workers, their work environment, job resources, compensation, growth opportunities, company culture, company reputation, their daily tasks and job control over the work that they do on a daily basis. The data account for how an employee values each factor, as well as how important that factor is to the employee’s overall happiness.
They must have been
They must have been interviewing new folks, as I still hear the seasoned folks are unhappy.