Thursday, June 9, 2011

Ethanol: "Brown-Forman 4Q Profit Doubles On Wine Asset Sale" (BF-A)
It appears that the Jack Daniels boycott* organized by Modern Drunkard magazine is not affecting BF.
From the Wall Street Journal:
--Brown-Forman 4Q beats Wall Street estimates with strong margins, favorable tax rate
--Company sees improving trends across all geographic regions in FY2012
--Pricing remains a challenge, but discounts are becoming less severe
By Melissa Korn 
NEW YORK -(Dow Jones)- Brown-Forman Corp.'s (BFA, BFB) fiscal fourth-quarter earnings more than doubled as the wine and liquor company benefited from an asset sale and low tax rate.
Brown-Forman, whose brands include Jack Daniel's whiskey, Southern Comfort liqueur and Finlandia vodka, has seen revenue improve in the past few quarters as consumers' spending and visits to bars and restaurants rebound from recession levels.

Continuing positive trends should remain for the current fiscal year, the company said, with growth expected across all geographic regions. Brown-Forman forecast fiscal 2012 per-share earnings between $3.45 and $3.85 a share, compared with the Street forecast of $3.68.

Chief Financial Officer Don Berg said on an earnings conference call that higher input costs, paired with continued difficulty in raising sale prices, would pressure margins. While Brown-Forman hedges about 55% to 57% of its commodity exposure, Berg said, it won't be as protected in fiscal 2012. Still, Berg said discounting has slowed and there should be "gradual improvement" in the company's pricing power....MORE
The company's flagship brand. Jack Daniels is distilled from the fermentation of a mixture consisting of 80% corn (maize), 12% rye and 8% barley.
*"It has been knifed in the back by the greedy corporate clowns at Brown-Forman, the conglomerate that bought the Jack Daniel distillery in 1956. Mr. Daniel’s once excellent whiskey began life as a 90 proof liquor, but about 17 years ago the proof was lowered to 86. Now it has been lowered again, to a timid 80 proof. America’s best bourbon is now a ghost. 

The decision makers at Brown-Forman have not only rendered Jack’s whiskey less palatable, they have also managed to defile an important part of our national heritage...".MUCH MORE