Monsanto sales sprout skyward in Q2
Seed and pesticide multinational Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON) has recorded a 12% rise in net sales to reach US$5.07 billion for the second quarter, while profits rose even further.
In an announcement today, the company said net income was up 29% at US$1.368 billion, attributed in part to strong gross profit growth in corn and soybeans, the absence of the Argentine peso devaluation and benefit from the sale of its Latitude wheat fungicide business.
In terms of the horticultural space, net sales in the vegetable seeds business rose by US$1 million to hit US$193 million.
The agricultural productivity segment, which encapsulates herbicides, notched a rise in net sales of 24% to US$888 million.
"We are delighted to have delivered such an excellent first half and strong second quarter, in the face of what is still a tough macro economy for agriculture," Monsanto chief executive officer Hugh Grant said in the release.
"While we’re increasing confidence in the outlook for the rest of the year, our emphasis at Monsanto is where it has always been - on bringing innovation to growers.
"Our proven innovation and unique platform advantages position us well to meet the challenges ahead, as well as make us an attractive, complementary partner for Bayer."
Issues relating to the proposed US$66 billion takeover from Bayer, a German crop protection company, was estimated to have cost US$27 million in operating expenses for Monsanto in the quarter.
Monsanto has updated its fiscal year 2017 as-reported earnings per share (EPS) guidance to be at the high end of the range of US$3.95-4.44.
On an ongoing basis, fiscal year 2017 ongoing EPS is also expected to be at the high end of the range of US$4.50-$4.90.
"This reflects the company’s increased confidence in the growth expected for the year and assumes the change in currency rates will have a relatively neutral effect on a full-year basis," the company said.
"From a gross profit perspective, the company continues to expect the Seed and Genomics segment gross profit to increase mid-single digits as a percent year-over-year. Within its Ag Productivity segment, gross profit is still expected to be in the range of $850 to $950 million, though now at the lower end of the range."