Bemis Co. Inc. is finishing up strong.
The Neenah, Wis.-based plastics packaging company posted solid third quarter results as it prepares to be acquired by Amcor Ltd. early next year.
But before that deal closes, Bemis has to continue operating as an independent, publicly traded company. With that obligation comes third quarter earnings and an associated conference call with stock analysts.
Bemis CEO William Austen told analysts his company "had a good quarter in line with expectations" as he praised employees for keeping focused even as the firm prepares to be absorbed into Amcor.
Like with any merger that eventually eliminates a publicly traded company, it's a bit of an unusual time for Bemis, which makes both flexible and rigid plastic packaging.
The company is still required to operate as usual while also realizing the end as an independent firm is near.
Shareholders and regulators still must approve the deal.
"Until the transaction closes, we will continue to operate as an independent company and will remain focused on serving our customers and delivering our operating plans. We are making progress to improve Bemis today and for the future," Austen said.
With the company being publicly traded, for now, stock analysts still asked Bemis leadership questions about areas such as costs, performance, market opportunities and challenges, for some examples. Earnings calls typically last about an hour, but this one wrapped up in about 40 minutes.
Amcor's $6.8 billion, all-stock deal will give Bemis shareholders about 29 percent of the combined company with Amcor shareholders holding the remaining 71 percent.
Bemis had a profit of $57.5 million, or 63 cents per diluted share, on sales of $1.026 billion for the third quarter. That compares with a profit of $55.6 million, or 61 cents per diluted share, on sales of $1.035 billion for the third quarter of 2017.
While overall sales were down a bit for the quarter, Bemis has been making progress to "fix, strengthen and grow" the business, the company said.