and James P. Miller
Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co. posted a strong second quarter Monday, beating Wall Street forecasts in a performance buoyed by surging international sales.
Wrigley's sales of $1.57 billion, up 14 percent, topped analysts' estimates of $1.53 billion. "It's more of the same, which is very good numbers," said Matt Arnold, a stock analyst at Edward Jones.
In an overseas region that principally includes Europe, revenue totaled $783 million, up 17 percent over 2007's second quarter. In the United States, sales stood at $474 million, up 5 percent. Still, U.S. sales volume fell about 5 percent, reflecting price increases that began last year.
Wrigley announced in April that it would be bought by Mars Inc. for $23 billion, or $80 per share, a deal partly financed by billionaire investor Warren Buffett. Wrigley's stock closed Monday at $79.10, up 11 cents.