MINNEAPOLIS – General Mills announced its second quarter earnings for the 2019 fiscal year, reporting a 5% increase in net sales to $4.4 billion. Blue Buffalo reached $335 billion in revenue in this quarter, down 7% from last year, but increased retail sales by 9% compared to year-ago sales. General Mills also reported a 40-point increase in market share across all channels.
The transition of Blue Buffalo into the General Mills product family is one of three major priorities for the company. Although Blue Buffalo’s performance this quarter was down in comparison to last year, executives expect this to reverse in the second half by leveraging a food/drug/mass product expansion, according to Jeff Harmening, chairman and CEO of General Mills.
“We feel good about the progress we're making here and we continue to see tremendous long-term growth for the Blue brand,” said Harmening.
Blue Buffalo remains the number one pet specialty and online brand for pet food and treats, with a household penetration up 26% and a 9% increase in retail sales year-to-date. Blue Buffalo continues to grow and gain share in the important e-commerce channel which makes up roughly 25% of Blue Buffalo’s net sales. In the first half of the fiscal year, Blue Buffalo retail sales in e-commerce grew 30%.
“Our job to do for the second half is very clear, and that is to accelerate our sales growth in our North America Retail and Pet segments, while we maintain our cost discipline, and we're confident in the plans we have to do just that,” added Harmening.
Looking forward, General Mills plans to introduce new product offerings under the Blue Buffalo brand in February 2019, which will keep the company on track to deliver double-digit growth for the pet segment by the end of this fiscal year, according to Harmening.
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