PURCHASE, NY -- PepsiCo posted better-than-expected third-quarter profit as brisk snack sales helped offset a decline in North American beverage volume.
The Purchase, NY, maker of Lay's potato chips and Pepsi soft drinks earned $1.91 billion, or $1.23 a share, for the three months ending Sept. 7, essentially unchanged from $1.9 billion, or $1.21 a share, a year ago. Revenue rose 2% to $16.91 billion.
Frito-Lay helped drive PepsiCo's North American snack sales up 7%. In Latin America, snack sales rose 14%. Overall, PepsiCo Americas Foods saw organic volume growth of 3% and pricing growth of 5%.
Meanwhile, beverage revenue for PepsiCo's Americas declined by 1.5% during the third quarter, while volume fell by 4%. Carbonated soft drink volumes declined in the "mid-single digits" in North America.
Beverage sales in Asia, the Middle East and Africa fell 3%, while sales climbed 3% in Europe.
PepsiCo chief executive Indra Nooyi noted that sodas now account for about 40% of the beverage industry, down from more than 50% a decade ago, and that the shift away from carbonated soft drinks continues as consumers look for healthier options. Diet soft drinks are also losing volume as consumers shy away from artificial sweeteners.
The company stood by its full-year earnings forecast for core earnings per share to grow 7%.
Click here for PepsiCo's 2013 Q3 report