OAKLAND -- Clorox sparkled with rising sales and profits for its first quarter, bolstered by price increases for a number of its brands, the company reported Wednesday.
The maker of household products company earned $133 million on revenues of $1.34 billion for the July-September quarter. Compared to the year-ago first quarter, profits rose 2.3 percent and sales rose 2.5 percent.
"We're off to a good start in the fiscal year," Clorox Chief Executive Officer Don Knauss said. "We delivered sales growth in both our U.S. and international businesses.
Oakland-based Clorox reaffirmed its estimates for fiscal 2013, which will end next September. Sales should range from a 2 percent to 4 percent gain, and full-year profits should range from $4.20 to $4.35, Clorox projected.
The earnings results beat Wall Street's expectations. Analysts had reckoned that Clorox would earn 95 cents a share, and the company earned $1.01 a share.
Confronted by higher costs for materials such as resin, Clorox in recent years has raised prices on an array of products. These include its eponymous bleach, Pine-Sol cleaners, Brita water filters and GladWare containers.
The price increases have reduced total volume, roughly defined as the number of products sold, but has also increased total sales.
"We are very pleased that we delivered margin improvement in the quarter," Chief Financial Officer Steve Robb said. "We've taken the right steps to rebuild our margin, including well-executed price increases across our portfolio and a strong focus on cost savings."
Contact George Avalos at 925-977-8477. Follow him at twitter.com/george_avalos.