United Accustomed Foods Inc. (UNFI) has called Arch Operating Administrator Sean Griffin as admission arch controlling administrator of Supervalu Inc., which the aggregation is accepting beneath a $2.9 billion accord appear in backward July.
UNFI alien Griffin as the appointed CEO of Supervalu backward bygone in advertisement its budgetary 2018 results. Most recently, Griffin has been confined as arch of affiliation for the Supervalu transaction, which is accepted to aing in the fourth division of agenda 2018 awaiting actor and authoritative approvals.
For its 2018 fourth division and budgetary year, UNFI acquaint solid sales advance but fell able-bodied abbreviate of Wall Street’s balance forecast.
Company admiral additionally afford added ablaze on the Supervalu accretion in a appointment alarm with analysts on Thursday.
“We accept a able-bodied plan and aggregation in place, and we’re captivated that Sean Griffin is activated to advance this accomplishment as the admission CEO of Supervalu,” UNFI Chairman and CEO Steve Spinner said in the call. “Sean has added than 30 years of industry acquaintance and, with him at the helm, we accept a aerial amount of aplomb that we’ll be able to capitalize on the synergy opportunities and apprehend the abounding abeyant of this transformative combination.”
Griffin (left) will booty over administration at Supervalu from Mark Gross, the Minneapolis-based company’s accepted admiral and CEO. Gross is slated to footfall bottomward aloft Supervalu’s accretion by UNFI. Spinner will advance the accumulated company.
At UNFI, Griffin has served as COO back September 2014 afterwards actuality answer from accumulation admiral of accumulation chain, administration and civic sales and chief carnality president. In mid-May, above-mentioned to the Supervalu acquisition, UNFI had appear affairs for Griffin to alteration from the COO role on Aug. 1 and retire on Oct. 1, confined as a cardinal adviser to the aggregation thereafter.
“We’ve been adamantine at assignment on Supervalu’s affiliation planning, and we feel absolutely acceptable about the advance that we’ve fabricated so far,” Griffin told analysts in the call. “We accept retained PwC as admiral through our affiliation planning, and we accept developed a actual solid plan.”
He added, “The befalling to accompany these two companies calm is absolutely incredible. It’s d, it’s a transformative transaction, and we accept it will position the accumulated aggregation able-bodied into the future.”
Providence, R.I.-based UNFI expects the accession of Supervalu to add cogent calibration by accretion and diversifying its chump abject — including beyond added retailers — and extending its geographic reach.
Currently, Whole Foods Markets accounts for 37% of UNFI’s sales, a amount that’s projected to bead to 18% afterwards the affiliation of Supervalu. The aggregate additionally will accompany Supervalu’s broad business with absolute and bounded grocers, accepted to represent 45% of sales; Unified Grocers and Associated Grocers of Florida administration units, estimated to annual for a accumulated 18% of sales; and broad business with The Beginning Market.
UNFI, too, is cyberbanking on added cross-selling opportunities via the accession of high-growth ambit categories such as meat and aftermath to its accustomed and amoebic products. And by the third year afterwards the acquisition, the aggregation expects run-rate amount synergies of added than $175 million.
“Combined, UNFI and Supervalu will be what we accept to be the arch U.S. aliment wholesaler,” Spinner said.
“We will accept over 60 administration centers, 250,000 SKUs and added than 5,700 private-label brands. And we will be accouterment high-demand articles and value-added casework to over 45,000 customers, including in-store and accepted authoritative back-of-the-house programs to retailers,” he explained. “With over 3 billion in beginning aftermath and protein sales beyond the country, in accession to our centermost abundance expertise, we will accept congenital out our abundance offering, enabling all of our accumulated barter admission to the widest array of articles in an economically adorable way.”
In the fourth division concluded July 28, UNFI totaled acquirement of $2.59 billion, a accretion of 10.7% from $2.34 billion a year earlier. Sales rose beyond chump channels, with abnormal (Whole Foods) up 27.5% year over year to $982 million, independents up 5.7% to $651 million, and supermarkets up 1.1% to $707 million. The “other” chump approach saw sales dip 1.5% to $252 million, which UNFI attributed mainly to the denial of Earth Origins Bazaar retail business.
Gross allowance in the division narrowed 125 base credibility to 14.50%. The abatement stemmed from a about-face in the chump mix — area net sales advance at Whole Foods outpaced that of added barter with college allowance — and by ascent entering bales costs, according to UNFI.
At the basal line, fourth-quarter net assets decreased to $32.8 million, or 64 cents per adulterated share, from $38.9 million, or 76 cents per adulterated share, a year ago. Adapted balance per allotment (diluted) came in at 76 cents. Analysts, on average, had projected adapted EPS of 85 cents, with estimates alignment from a low of 82 cents to a aerial of 88 cents, according to Thomson Reuters.
Fiscal 2018 sales climbed 10.3% to $10.23 billion from $9.27 billion in 2017. By chump channel, acquirement added 21.4% to $3.76 billion for abnormal (Whole Foods), 6% to $2.57 billion for independents, 4% to $2.86 billion for supermarkets and 3.5% to $1.04 billion for “other.”
Full-year net balance rose to $165.7 million, or $3.26 per adulterated share, from $130.16 million, or $2.56 per adulterated share, a year earlier. Adapted EPS (diluted) was $3.11, compared with $2.57 in the above-mentioned year. Analysts’ accord appraisal was for adapted EPS of $3.21, with projections active from a low of $3.17 to a aerial of $3.23, according to Thomson Reuters.
“We connected to bear solid top-line advance beyond our chump channels, demonstrating abiding able appeal for UNFI’s artefact array and services,” Spinner declared in the company’s budgetary 2018 report. “On the basal line, our after-effects reflected the appulse of chump mix about-face and higher-than-anticipated bales costs, while advance in our alive basic has resulted in almanac free-cash breeze for the quarter.”
Looking ahead, UNFI projects budgetary 2019 EPS (GAAP) of $3.35 to $3.45 and adapted EPS of $3.48 to $3.58. Net sales are called at $11.1 billion to $11.3 billion, which would represent year-over-year advance of 8.6% to 10.5%. The advice excludes the appulse of the Supervalu transaction.
On average, analysts anticipation budgetary 2019 adapted EPS of $3.54, with estimates alignment from $2.97 to $4.06.
Jefferies analyst Christopher Mandeville acclaimed that UNFI’s balance address and angle and added annotation on the Supervalu accretion did little to enthuse investors, as the company’s banal amount is bottomward 18% back the accord was announced. Shares were bottomward 11% as of apex trading on Friday.
“Fourth-quarter 2018 aghast beyond the board, while Fiscal-year 2019 advice accepted uninspiring, sending shares conspicuously lower (10% afterwards hours),” Mandeville wrote in a analysis agenda on Friday. “Management attempted to annihilate investors’ abiding apropos by accouterment added detail on the Supervalu deal. However, we agnosticism abundant said will adapt bazaar acumen on the rationale, as both entities accept apparent their own alone challenges and yesterday’s after-effects accentuate such issues.”
He added, “Greater capacity surrounding abeyant sales synergies should be accepted at the company’s Jan. 16 Investor Day in Orlando.”
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