Coca-Cola stock jumps as strong sales of Coke Zero Sugar continue to drive revenue growth – CNBC

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Marcos Brindicci | Reuters

Coca-Cola on Friday reported quarterly revenue that topped analysts’ expectations as more customers are drawn in by healthier options, like Zero Sugar soda and smaller size cans.

Shares of the company jumped 1.6% in premarket trading.

“Our performance gives us confidence that our strategies are taking hold with our consumers, customers and system,” CEO James Quincey said in a statement.

Here’s what the company reported compared with what Wall Street was expecting, based on a survey of analysts by Refinitiv:

  • Earnings per share: 56 cents, adjusted, vs. 56 cents expected
  • Revenue: $9.5 billion vs. $9.4 billion expected

Coke reported fiscal third-quarter net income of $2.6 billion, or 60 cents per share, up from $1.8 billion, or 44 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding items, the beverage giant earned 56 cents per share, in line with the 56 cents per share expected by analysts surveyed by Refinitiv.

Net sales rose 8% to $9.5 billion, topping expectations of $9.4 billion. Organic revenue grew by 5%, helped by higher prices and customers buying more expensive drinks.

As soda consumption declines in the U.S., Coke has been driving sales by focusing on drinks with less sugar and smaller packaging. Coke Zero Sugar once again saw double-digit volume growth, as did 7.5-ounce mini cans of soda.  

Outside of the U.S., Coke has been leveraging recognition of its namesake brand to expand its drink portfolio. It has launched its Coca-Cola Plus Coffee drink in more than 20 markets. The company is also launching its first energy drink under the Coca-Cola brand. Coke Energy is available in at least 25 countries and will be making its U.S. debut in January.

Coke once again updated its 2019 outlook for organic revenue. It now expects at least 5% growth after telling investors last quarter to expect organic revenue growth of 5%.

The company also released a partial forecast for fiscal 2020. It is expecting a 1% to 2% currency headwind next year to impact its comparable revenue and a 2% to 3% currency headwind to hit its operating income.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

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