No decision yet on sale of JCI automotive battery business
Johnson Controls International plc reported a sharp increase in net income for its 2018 fiscal year on Thursday but did not announce an expected decision on the sale of its automotive battery business.
“We’ve gone through a very thorough process and have been assessing multiple options,” George Oliver, chairman and chief executive officer, said during a conference call with Wall Street analysts. “I would tell you that we’ve been disciplined in making sure that whatever the outcome is that we are going to be positioned to increase the most shareholder value.
“Little bit disappointed about the timing, but it’s something we can’t control. What I would say is we have made significant progress,” Oliver said.
Bloomberg reported last week that Johnson Controls was close to a deal to sell its automotive battery business to a private equity firm. In March, the company said it was exploring the sale or spin-off of the business, known as Power Solutions.
“What I believe is the most important is making the right decision as opposed to keeping to a set timeline,” Oliver said. “We are evaluating all of the multiple options before reaching the final decision, and all options are still on the table.”
The company reported net income of $2.2 billion, or $2.32 a share, compared with $1.6 billion, or $1.71 a share, in its 2017 fiscal year.
Net sales were up 1 percent from the $30.2 billion reported for the 2017 fiscal year.
For its fourth quarter, Johnson Controls reported a drop in net income to $771 million, or 83 cents a share, compared with net income of $875 million, or 93 cents a share, for the same period a year earlier.
Revenue was up slightly to $8.4 billion for the quarter compared with $8.1 billion in the same quarter of 2017.
But the company said it expects earnings of $2.90 to $3.05 a share for fiscal 2019.