Reckitt Benckiser Cuts 2017 Guidance on Falling 3Q Comparable Revenue

By Adria Calatayud Features Dow Jones Newswires

British consumer goods company Reckitt Benckiser Group PLC (RB.LN) on Wednesday lowered its full-year guidance for comparable revenue, after reporting a 1% fall in the metric for the third quarter of 2017.

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The consumer health and household company, whose brands include Dettol, Airwick, Durex and Scholl, said like-for-like revenue--excluding the impact of foreign exchange rates, acquisitions and disposals--was hit by a continued challenging market environment.

The company said it is now targeting flat performance for its base operations, excluding the recently acquired U.S. baby-food maker Mead Johnson. In July, the company lowered its full-year comparable revenue growth target to 2% and said it expected like-for-like revenue to rise again over the second half after declining in the first six months of the year.

In the third quarter, Reckitt Benckiser generated net revenue of GBP3.21 billion ($4.24 billion), up 30% year on year. The company added that its revenue benefited from positive foreign exchange movements.

The British consumer giant is currently integrating Mead Johnson which it bought for $16.6 billion in June. Following the acquisition it sold its food division to U.S. spice maker McCormick & Co. (MKC) for $4.2 billion in July.

Reckitt Benckiser said Mead Johnson's like-for-like revenue increased by 1% in the third quarter, helped by strong market growth in China and lifted its target for that business to a "minus 2% to flat" performance for full 2017.

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Reckitt is dealing with challenges posed by changing consumer tastes that are affecting larger peers like Procter & Gamble Co. (PG) and Unilever PLC (ULVR.LN).

Write to Adria Calatayud at adria.calatayudvaello@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 18, 2017 02:53 ET (06:53 GMT)