Colgate-Palmolive Co CL
Q1 2013 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 04/25/2013

Operator: Good day, and welcome to today's Colgate-Palmolive Company First Quarter 2013 Earnings Conference Call. Today's call is being recorded and is being simulcast live at Just as a reminder, there may be a slight delay before the question-and-answer session begins due to the web simulcast.

At this time, for opening remarks and introductions, I'd like to turn the call over to the Senior Vice President of Investor Relations, Ms. Bina Thompson. Please go ahead.

Bina H. Thompson - SVP, IR: Thank you, Melissa. Good morning everybody, and welcome to our first quarter 2013 earnings release conference call. With me this morning are Ian Cook, Chairman, President and CEO, Dennis Hickey, CFO, Victoria Dolan, Corporate Controller, and Elaine Paik, Treasurer.

This conference call will include forward-looking statements. These statements are made on the basis of our views and assumptions as of this time and are not guarantees of future performance. Actual events or results may differ materially from these statements. So, for information about certain factors that could cause such differences, investors should consult our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and available on our website, including the information set forth under the captions, 'Risk Factors and Cautionary Statements on Forward-Looking Statements.'

This conference call will also include a discussion of non-GAAP financial measures which differ from our results prepared in accordance with GAAP. We will discuss organic sales growth, excluding foreign exchange, acquisitions, and divestitures. We will also discuss gross profit, gross profit margin, SG&A, operating profit, net income and earnings per share excluding the impact of the certain items described in the press release. And the full reconciliation with the corresponding GAAP measures is included in the press release and is posted in the For Investors section of our website at

We're very pleased with the way the year has started out continuing the momentum with which we finished 2012. Our organic sales growth was robust, up 6% and even more satisfying considering the strong organic sales growth of 6.5% in the year-ago quarter. Our worldwide market shares are up across all oral care categories. An improvement in gross margin has allowed us to support new and existing products with increased advertising while still delivering a healthy bottom line.

Macroeconomic challenges continue to present themselves, particularly in the more developed parts of the world and of course, more recently in Venezuela. But despite that, our business is strong both from a P&L and a balance sheet standpoint with excellent cash generation.

Our global growth and efficiency program is on track. Just this quarter we announced several initiatives. First, in Europe, we are creating an oral care center of excellent by moving our consumer innovation center, our category management group and our consumer insights group, all to Basel, Switzerland where they will be combined with our professional affairs and technology groups already based there. As you know, Basel has been the headquarters for our GABA business. So this newly formed organization will be able to benefit from GABA's longstanding expertise in the areas of professional affairs and technology.

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