Dole Food 3Q loss widens to $54 million

AP News
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Posted: Nov 19, 2009 6:35 PM

Dole Food Co. said Thursday its third-quarter loss widened as the loss of two businesses cut into the fruit and vegetable producer's revenue compared with a year ago.

It was Dole's first quarterly report since its initial public offering. Shares of Dole began trading Oct. 23, and the IPO closed Oct. 28, raising about $415 million to repay debt.

The company is controlled by investor David H. Murdock, who took the company private in March 2003 in a transaction valued at $2.5 billion. Dole had previously been publicly traded.

For the three months that ended Oct. 10, Dole reported a loss of $54 million, compared with a loss of $21 million a year earlier.

Its revenue fell 14 percent to about $1.94 billion from $2.26 billion, which dole said was primarily due to its divestment in last year's fourth quarter from the JP Fresh and Dole France businesses. Unfavorable foreign currency exchange rates also hurt its financial results.

Excluding one-time items, the company, which is based in Westlake Village, Calif., and has 76,000 employees, reported operating income of $44 million, up from $35 million in the year-ago quarter.

The results were released after the market's close.

Dole shares rose 16 cents, or about 1.3 percent, to end the regular trading day at $12.50. They climbed 10 cents to $12.60 after hours. And they have traded in a range of $11.28 to $12.87.