Ardagh Group S.A. (NYSE:ARD) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript

Feb 21, 2019 • 10:00 am ET


Ardagh Group S.A. (NYSE:ARD) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript


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Hello, and welcome to the Ardagh Fourth Quarter and Year End 2018 Results. Throughout the call, all participants will be in a listen-only mode and afterwards there will be a question-and-answer session. Please note this call is being recorded.

Today, I'm pleased to present Paul Coulson, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Please begin your meeting.

Paul Coulson

Welcome everyone to our fourth quarter and full year 2018 earnings call, which follows the publication earlier today of our results for the quarter and the full year. On the call today with me are David Matthews, our CFO; and John Sheehan, our Corporate Development and Investor Relations Director.

Just a couple of formal paragraphs, first of all the information provided during this call will contain forward-looking statements. These reflect circumstances at the time they are made and the Company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements. Actual results or outcomes may differ materially from those that may be expressed or implied due to a wide range of factors, including those set forth in the Company's SEC filings and the news releases.

Our earnings release, financial report and related materials can be found at Information regarding the use of non-GAAP financial measures may also be found in the Notes section of today's earnings release which includes a reconciliation to the most comparable GAAP measures of adjusted EBITDA and adjusted earnings per share.

This disclaimer is only a summary of the Company's statutory forward-looking statements disclaimer, which is included in the Company's filings with the SEC.

So, if I could turn to the results. First of all, in terms of the group overview, it was a good quarter in our metal packaging business in particular in beverage cans and it was also a good quarter in Glass Europe where we delivered another strong performance for the quarter and the full year.

Glass North America's earnings as expected were lower in the quarter and we continue to execute on our profit improvement initiatives. And as in previous quarters my remarks on volumes/mix exclude IFRS 15 effects. So, if I turn to the results fourth quarter revenue of $2.4 -- $2.14 billion (ph) increased by 1% at actual exchange rates and by 4% at constant exchange rates compared to the same period last year. Higher revenue reflected volume mix growth of 1% and the pass through of increased input costs. Volume mix growth for the quarter, 1% comprised of 3% increase in metal packaging led by our beverage can businesses globally, partially offset by a decline of 1% in glass packaging where broad-based growth in Europe was offset by lower volumes in North America.

Highlights for the quarter included volume mix growth in three of our four divisions, led by advances of 3% in both metal packaging Americas and metal packaging Europe. Global beverage can volume mix growth of 6% with increases of 8% in the Americas, and 4% in Europe. Continued strength in Glass Packaging Europe, where packaging volume/mix increased by 2% in