NEW YORK – Coca-Cola Co. reported better-than-expected quarterly results and announced a new cost-savings program on Tuesday, helping to send shares in the world’s top soft-drink maker up 1.3 percent in premarket trading.
Coke’s beverage business has been outperforming that of rival PepsiCo Inc. in recent months in North America, where a weak economy and growing health consciousness had curbed demand for sugary soft drinks. At the same time, the company has a much greater international footprint than Pepsi, which has helped its overall results.
Coke said global revenue rose 5 percent in the fourth quarter to $11.04 billion as it gained market share in several drink categories. Analysts on average were expecting $10.99 billion.
Worldwide volume rose 3 percent, growing 4 percent in Latin America and Eurasia and Africa, 5 percent in the Pacific and 1 percent in Europe and North America.
Quarterly net income was $1.65 billion, or 72 cents per share, down from $5.77 billion, or $2.46 per share, a year earlier, when the company recorded a gain related to the acquisition of its North American bottling operations.