July 27, 2009 / 12:44 PM / in 9 years

UPDATE 1-Cott Corp climbs to quarterly profit

*EPS $0.48 vs loss $0.03

*Revenue falls 5.9 percent to $438.8 million (Adds details. In U.S. dollars)

TORONTO, July 27 (Reuters) - Soft-drink maker Cott Corp (BCB.TO) (COT.N) swung to a second-quarter profit on Monday as recession-wary consumers shifted to private-label products, but the company cautioned that steep competition and rising commodity prices could put a lid on future quarters.

Cott, the world’s largest maker of private-label soft drinks, said it earned $33.7 million, or 48 cents a share for the quarter that ended June 27, compared with a loss of $1.8 million, or 3 cents a share for the same time last year.

The company said strong performances from its North American and British divisions and a favorable tax benefit helped the company return to a profit.

    However, revenue for the quarter fell 5.9 percent to $438.8 million due to the rise of the U.S. dollar against the currencies of several countries in which Cott operates.

    Analysts, on average, were expecting 15 cents a share and revenue of $461.8 million, according to Reuters Estimates.

    Gross margin increased to 16.7 percent of sales in the quarter, compared with 12.2 percent last year. The company’s global beverage case volume declined 2.5 percent. ($1=$1.08 Canadian) (Reporting by Scott Anderson, editing by Maureen Bavdek)

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