UPDATE 1-Australia's Coca-Cola Amatil warns on profit, launches new products

miércoles 20 de agosto de 2014 00:00 GYT

* H1 net profit falls 15.6 percent to $169.50 mln

* Strategic review report due end of October

* New products include 250ml, A$2 Coke can (Recasts, updates throughout with more detail, CEO and analyst comment, share price)

SYDNEY, Aug 20 (Reuters) - Struggling Australian food and beverage company Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd (CCA) warned on Wednesday it expects to post a second consecutive drop in full-year earnings amid weak consumer confidence and thanks to a few management "own goals."

CCA is scrambling under new Chief Executive Alison Watkins to address the changing tastes of its core market, launching a smaller, cheaper Coke can and promising more sugar-free products.

Still, those introductions will be too late for the current year, when it expects full-year profit to be "materially lower" than last year.

In its first set of results under Watkins, the company revealed on Monday that first-half net profit slid 15.6 percent to A$182.3 million ($169.50 million), from A$215.9 million a year ago.

That was largely in line with analyst expectations of A$184.5 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S, but shares fell 2.9 percent as analysts focused on the weak earnings outlook.

Watkins, who took the post in March, conceded the poor operational result was not entirely due to external factors like domestic price competition from Asahi Group Holding Ltd's Pepsi.   Continuación...