Starbucks results disappoint, new CEO must brew up growth
By Lisa Baertlein
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Starbucks Corp's (SBUX.O: Quote) new chief executive has a tall order to fill in keeping the world's biggest coffee chain's promise to return to historic growth rates amidst stubborn U.S. restaurant and retail slumps.
Kevin Johnson, who succeeded Howard Schultz as CEO this month, on Thursday presided over an earnings call where the company cut its full-year profit target on the heels of disappointing second-quarter sales and stalling growth from its main business in the United States.
Shares in the company fell 4.9 percent to $58.30 after Starbucks also announced that it was reviewing its Teavana business after that chain's mall stores dragged down overall sales.
Johnson nevertheless remained upbeat.
"With our U.S. business accelerating throughout the quarter and strong performance in China, we are poised to deliver strong revenue growth in the second half and into the future," Johnson said in a statement.
Still, Starbucks lowered its full-year net earnings target to a range of $2.06 to $2.10 per share from $2.09 to $2.11 per share.
It also said full-year revenue growth would be at the lower end of its previously forecast range of 8 to 10 percent.
Starbucks net revenue was up 6 percent to $5.3 billion for the fiscal second quarter, but fell just short of the $5.4 billion expected by analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Continued...