Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc.: An Earnings Preview

Dr Pepper Snapple (NYSE: DPS  ) will report earnings on Wednesday. Here's what to watch for in the company's results.

Earnings expectations
The first question is whether the beverage giant met Wall Street's expectations. Analysts peg profit at $0.59 per share this quarter. Dr Pepper Snapple booked earnings per share of $0.51 in the same quarter last year, so the company is expecting improvement in profit growth. Dr Pepper Snapple reported nearly $1.4 billion in sales for the first quarter of last year and $6 billion for full-year 2013.

Revenue growth
Dr Pepper Snapple's fourth-quarter 2013 net sales grew 2%. However, sales in North America were far outpaced by those in Latin America. Soft-drink sales in the U.S. have stalled out in the past decade, with Dr Pepper Snapple and its soda rivals feeling the negative effects. As more consumers reach for healthier beverages, the noncarbonated segment shows growth potential for the cola giants, especially in developed markets. Dr Pepper Snapple has Deja Blue water, Clamato and Mott's juices, Nantucket Nectars, and Snapple in its noncarbonated beverage portfolio. Meanwhile, PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP  ) holds Aquafina, Naked Juice, Tropicana, and Gatorade in this segment, and Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO  ) has added Dasani water, Minute Maid, Powerade, and Honest Tea to its lineup in recent years.

Innovative ways bubbling to boost business
The decline in soda consumption has spurred innovation from soft-drink makers. Earlier this year, Coca-Cola and Keurig Green Mountain agreed to roll out Coke's portfolio of products for use in Green Mountain's upcoming Keurig Cold at-home beverage system. PepsiCo will enter the at-home carbonation market with Bevyz, a multidrink beverage maker, next month. And recently, an Israeli financial news website reported that SodaStream, maker of the leading at-home soda device, was in talks to sell up to 16% of the company to a large potential investor. Dr Pepper Snapple was mentioned among other beverage giants. It's unclear whether these machines will boost consumption, but these companies' partnerships certainly legitimize the at-home carbonation market.

Foolish takeaway
When Dr Pepper Snapple releases its first-quarter results on Wednesday, I'll be watching to see if and how the company achieved sales growth. I'll also be looking for any indications as to Dr Pepper Snapple Group's foray into the at-home carbonation market.

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