Hershey reports 13% jump in 2021 first quarter, raises outlook

April 30, 2021

Chocolate giant Hershey Co. (NYSE: HSY) this week announced net sales and earnings for the first quarter ended April 4, and raised its full-year financial outlook.

First-Quarter 2021 Summary

  • Consolidated net sales of $2,295.9 million, an increase of 12.7%.
  • Organic, constant currency net sales increased 12.9%.
  • Divestitures and foreign currency exchange each had a 0.1 point negative impact on net sales.
  • Reported net income of $395.8 million, or $1.90 per share-diluted, an increase of 47.3%.
  • Adjusted earnings per share-diluted of $1.92, an increase of 17.8%.

Consolidated net sales were $2,295.9 million in the first quarter of 2021 versus $2,037.3 million in the year ago period, an increase of 12.7%.  Continued momentum in the North America segment, complemented by accelerated recovery of the international and other segments, resulted in volume gains of 11 points. 

Price realization contributed an additional 1.9-point benefit.  Foreign exchange was a 0.1-point headwind, and the impact of divestitures was also a 0.1-point headwind driven by the 2020 sales of Krave and the Scharffen Berger and Dagoba brands.

Reported gross margin was 45.7% in the first quarter of 2021, compared with 42.5% in the first quarter of 2020, an increase of 320 basis points.

Selling, marketing and administrative expenses increased 4.1% in the first quarter of 2021 versus the first quarter of 2020 driven by advertising increases in the North America segment and corporate expenses.  Advertising and related consumer marketing expenses increased 2.8% in the first quarter of 2021 versus the same period last year driven by increased investment in core brands, innovation, and incremental sponsorships in North America.

First-quarter 2021 reported operating profit of $553.0 million increased 44.5% versus the first quarter of 2020, resulting in an operating profit margin of 24.1%, an increase of 530 basis points.  Adjusted operating profit of $555.7 million increased 17.9% versus the first quarter of 2020, resulting in an adjusted operating profit margin of 24.2%, an increase of 110 basis points. 

See Hershey's full financial report at PR Newswire.


[Photo: Hershey Co.]
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