Security services firm The Brink's Co. (BCO: Quote) Friday reported a rise in fourth-quarter profit on higher revenues, benefited by improvement in Europe and North America. However, looking forward, the company expects a challenging first-quarter, due to a strong year-over-year comparison in Latin America last year.
It also sees its 2013 earnings "very difficult" to match 2012, as a result of an increase in productivity investments and its assumption of currency devaluation in Venezuela.
Brink's said it plans to divest its cash-in-transit or CIT operations in Germany and reported completion of divestitures of guarding operations in France and Morocco. Divestiture of its CIT business in Poland may close by March 31.
In 2012, these businesses had generated revenues of $104 million and an operating loss of $18 million or $0.36 per share, the results of which are reported in discontinued operations. However, Brink's said it would continue to operate its Global Services business in each of these countries.
Tom Schievelbein, chairman, president and chief executive officer of the company said, "Eliminating the operating losses from these businesses improves the overall earnings power of Brink's by 31 cents per share on a non-GAAP basis, and enables our new leadership team to focus on achieving sustainable returns in our remaining markets, which continue to be very challenging."
In the fourth quarter, net income attributable to the company increased to $27.9 million or $0.57 per share from $15.8 million or $0.33 per share in the previous year.
On a non-GAAP basis, earnings per share from continuing operations were $0.60, while the company posted $0.67 per share in the prior year.
On average, four analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected earnings per share of $0.66 for the quarter. Analysts' estimates typically exclude one-time items.
Revenues for the quarter grew 4 percent to $1.01 billion, which also came in above analysts' estimate of $999.20 million. Organic revenue growth was 6 percent.
For full year 2013, Brink's sees total organic revenue growth of 5 to 8 percent.
BCO closed Thursday's regular trading at $29.82 on the NYSE.
by RTT Staff Writer
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