John Bean Technologies Corporation (NYSE:JBT) Q1 2018 Earnings Conference Call - Preliminary Transcript

May 02, 2018 • 10:00 am ET

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John Bean Technologies Corporation (NYSE:JBT) Q1 2018 Earnings Conference Call - Preliminary Transcript

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Q & A
Operator
Operator

(Operator Instructions) Your first question comes from the line of Allison Poliniak of Wells Fargo. Your line is open.

Analyst
Allison Poliniak

Hi guys, good morning.

Executive
Tom Giacomini

Good morning Allison.

Analyst
Allison Poliniak

So I want to touch on management capacity here. Some operating issues in the quarter is certainly generating a very high level of growth. I mean, are you coming into issues with management capacity to handle this growth? Any thoughts on that?

Executive
Tom Giacomini

Allison, as I look at it, I'm certainly encouraged by the growth for JBT, and we've been investing behind that the last few years with the new products and the market expansion in Asia. So I find that very encouraging. And one of the proactive steps we took last year was to double the senior executive capacity at FoodTech with the addition of two roles reporting directly to me. And we were in front of the need to have the additional capacity. And I would say, through the back half of last year and currently in the first quarter, we have made some significant upgrades in the management capacity below our executive team in those presidents. So I feel we're very much in front of that and aware of that need, and we've done a great job of addressing it.

Analyst
Allison Poliniak

Okay. And then, I guess, just going back to the mix issues that could you kind of go and set a little bit more? And are we expecting that mix issue to persist based on current orders coming in, any comments there?

Executive
Tom Giacomini

Yes. For the mix, it was primarily in protein in North America. And as the quarter unfolded, when we look at the projects and the orders that are in front of us, it's very encouraging. It gives us the confidence to see the margin expansion accelerating in the second and then through the third and fourth quarters. And it really was more around timing of the orders and shipments. And we don't see any structural impediments or something that would tell us that that's going to be a challenge going forward.

Analyst
Allison Poliniak

Great. Thanks.

Operator
Operator

Your next question comes from the line of George Godfrey of CL King & Associates. Your line is open.

Analyst
George Godfrey

Good morning and thank you. Tom, I just want to follow up on that last point you just made, the organic growth being minus 3% here in the quarter, but you're still maintaining the 7% to 8% organic growth for the full year. What is it about the timing and the pace of orders that give you the confidence that we're going to have such a dramatic change in the organic growth rate in the next three quarters and the second half of the year? Thanks.

Executive
Tom Giacomini

Yes. George, what gives me and the team the confidence to continue to see that strong organic growth through the year for JBT is the visibility we have into the project activity and the customer interactions that we see unfolding through late last year and into the first quarter of this year are