In an effort to provide incremental returns to shareholders,
the board of directors at
) approved a 12% increase in its quarterly dividend to 28 cents.
Shares of AptarGroup rose around 2.5% to $67.35 but closed at
$64.72 at the end of trading on Apr 11 following the
The new dividend will be paid on May 21, 2014, to shareholders of
record on Apr 30, 2014. The latest increase in distribution
depicts the company's ability to generate healthy free cash flow
and reflects its balance sheet strength as well. The last
dividend hike of 14% from 22 cents to 25 cents was announced in
AptarGroup paid dividend of over $65 million in 2013. Balanced
capital allocation strategy allows the company to distribute
incremental dividends and share repurchases, which will support
its commitment to improve shareholders' value facilitating future
AptarGroup ended 2013 with cash and cash equivalents of $309.8
million, up from $229.7 million as of 2012 end. In addition,
AptarGroup repurchased 2 million shares for $119 million in 2013.
Exiting 2013, the company has nearly 4 million shares authorized
remaining for repurchase.
AptarGroup expects earnings in the range of 65 to 70 cents per
share for the first quarter of 2014. The company remains focused
on cost containment and development of innovative products.
AptarGroup will also benefit from targeted savings of $10 million
to $12 million on an annualized basis from its restructuring plan
in Europe. Reducing the footprint should augment returns over the
long term and help boost the company's growth in Europe.
In Dec 2013, AptarGroup acquired a 20% stake in Bapco Closures
for approximately $5 million and secured an exclusive global
license for Bapco's sealing technology. The acquisition, along
with the exclusive global license for Bapco's innovative closure
sealing technology, gives AptarGroup a better foothold in the
However, effects of the challenging currency environment
(particularly in Latin America and Southeast Asia) and modest
pricing pressure on the Beauty + Home segment, increase in resin
prices and a sluggish U.S. personal care end market remain
Crystal Lake, IL-based AptarGroup is a leading global supplier of
a broad range of innovative dispensing systems for the
fragrance/cosmetic, personal care, pharmaceutical, household and
AptarGroup currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Some better-ranked stocks in the same industry include
Packaging Corporation of America
Neenah Paper, Inc.
KapStone Paper and Packaging Corporation
). While Packaging Corporation and Neenah Paper sport a Zacks
Rank #1 (Strong Buy), KapStone Paper has a Zacks Rank #2
APTARGROUP INC (ATR): Free Stock Analysis
KAPSTONE PAPER (KS): Free Stock Analysis
NEENAH PAPER (NP): Free Stock Analysis Report
PACKAGING CORP (PKG): Free Stock Analysis
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