Clorox CEO is confident in growth, even after Q4 and a disappointing lead

Linda Rendle, CEO of Clorox, on Tuesday defended the company’s long-term outlook, telling CNBC its disappointing fourth-quarter earnings and 2022 sales forecasts are the result of temporary factors that diminish over time.

In an interview with CNBC’s Jim Cramer on “Mad Money,” Rendle said Clorox is coming out of the coronavirus pandemic “a much stronger society” even while repeating the magnitude of sales growth it saw during the crisis. sanitation is a difficult task.

“So, we’ve failed, but I think the important thing is … if you look at the fundamentals of our business, our brands have never been stronger,” said Rendle, who took over as CEO in September 2020. . ”We” are reinvesting in these brands and investing in the long run and we have every confidence that we will continue to increase and accelerate the company’s long-term profitable growth. “

Clorox shares fell 9.46% Tuesday to end the session at $ 164.06. The stock market has now fallen by almost 19% a year and about 29% in the last 12 months. Clorox sales fell 9% in the fourth quarter compared to the same period last year, a time when consumers were struggling with the company’s cleaning products in response to Covid’s concerns.

“Health, well-being and hygiene are not going away. The consumption of our cleaning company, for example, is 25% higher than it was pre-pandemic. People are doing more things to take care of themselves. more water, ”Rendle said, alluding probably to the company’s property Brita brand water filter. His other brands include Glad, Burt’s Bees and the same Clorox.

Adjusted earnings per share of 95 cents fell below expectations of $ 1.35 per share. The lack of profit was due, in part, to what Rendle described as an “unprecedented cost environment” in which supply chains remain unconcerned. However, she emphasized that society is doing what it can to counter those cost pressures, remaining optimistic about the wider picture of demand.

“We are at home given the fact that there is hybrid work. Our portfolio will benefit from it, and we are ready to take advantage of that in the future,” adds Rendle. “What needs to happen is the next six months. We have taken all the necessary actions when it comes to saving costs, tariffs, dealing with margins. … What we see in the later half of our year it’s going back to the end of our sales algorithm and starting to expand its gross margin in Q4. ”

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