MeadWestvaco Corporation (MWV) reported lower operating results for the fourth quarter and full fiscal year 2008—reflecting, according to the company, a difficult operating environment of continued input cost inflation and lower demand in many consumer packaging markets. Sales from continuing operations were $6.64 billion, 4% higher than 2007 sales from continuing operations. Volume and price gains in the mill business drove the growth. Full-year 2008 income from continuing operations was $80 million, or $0.46 per share, and included after-tax restructuring charges of $44 million, or $0.26 per share, related to facility closures, asset write-downs and employee separation costs.
As part of its strategy to enhance its business platform and improve long-term financial performance, MWV is accelerating elements of a cost reduction program to achieve an additional $100 million in reduced corporate and business overhead expenses and $25 million in savings from facility closures and restructuring this year.
“Before and during this difficult period, we’ve taken bold, proactive steps to secure our financial position and ensure that we remain a strong competitor in our targeted markets,” said John A. Luke, Jr., chairman and CEO, MWV. “We have fortified our cash position and moved aggressively to reduce our costs, all while continuing to execute our strategic priorities. Our actions reflect an intense focus on maximizing value for our shareholders through this period of economic uncertainty and into the stronger and more stable times that are sure to come.”
The complete report is available here.