Read the transcript from the DPS Investor Relations site and noted Marty's comment that between quarter end, which came in at 238 million shares, that they took advantage of the price drop and took out another 11 million shares, to be at 227 million. And they are dipping into the second authorization now, to buy the stock low and retire more shares. This is fantastic! The less shares, the better the EPS, and, more importantly, the more free cash flow for dividends going forward. To me, this was one of the best comments of the conference call. The rest -- well, it is clear management has a solid handle on the company, they are investing in their brands, it will be fun to see what they do with "Punchy" and their other initiatives to drive growth -- but the retirement of shares....taking it down so fast from 254 to 227 million (and dropping!) bodes VERY well for shareholders long term, along with lots of room to grow the dividend. Just my opinion.
Yes, and now that the 714MM Coke payment is in hand they've got about 940MM cash, much of which will go for buybacks and divs. I think we'll see the dividend go up 10% or more and the share count drop by another 15MM in the next 12 mos.