Newell Rubbermaid reports Q3 loss, announces Project Renewal

Atlanta-based Newell Rubbermaid reported a third-quarter net loss of $177.6 million, compared with net income of $28.3 million in the year-ago period. Net sales for the quarter ended Sep. 30 totaled $1.55 billion, an increase of 5.8% from $1.47 in the third quarter of 2010. 

"Our third-quarter results represent a solid step forward,” said Michael Polk, president and CEO. “Core sales growth, operating income margin improvement and operating cash flow came in as expected and improved meaningfully versus our first half and year ago results. These are good numbers in the context of a really tough macro-environment and represent progress toward our goal of delivering consistent predictable results and sustainable profitable growth."

Net income for the nine months ended Sept. 30 totaled $44.8 million, compared with $217.1 million in the year-ago period. Net sales for the nine-month period increased 3.6% to $4.37 billion, compared with $4.22 billion in the prior year.

In addition, Newell Rubbermaid announced Project Renewal, which will simplify and realign the structure of the company.

“Project Renewal [is] an initiative designed to reduce complexity in our operating structure and realign resources to our highest potential businesses,” Polk said. “We plan to achieve savings of approximately $90 to $100 million over the next 12 to 18 months, and invest the majority of these funds back into the business in increased brand building support, strengthened demand creation capabilities in customer development and marketing, and the development of our business system in emerging markets."

The company still expects full-year sales growth of 3% to 5%.