Philip Morris Revenue Falls, But Profit Climbs in Q4 2020

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Reported Diluted EPS of $5.16 Versus $4.61 in 2019, Reflecting Adjusted Diluted EPS Growth of 7.0% on an Organic Basis; Provides 2021 EPS Forecast

Philip Morris International Inc. today announces its 2020 fourth-quarter and full-year results. Comparisons presented in this press release on a “like-for-like” basis reflect pro forma 2019 results, which have been adjusted for the deconsolidation of PMI’s Canadian subsidiary, Rothmans, Benson & Hedges, Inc. (RBH), effective March 22, 2019 (the date of deconsolidation).

In addition, PMI’s total market share has been restated for previous periods to reflect the deconsolidation. Growth rates presented in this press release on an organic basis reflect currency-neutral underlying results and “like-for-like” comparisons, where applicable.

Philip Morris ends Q3 with over 16M IQOS users

Adjustments, other calculations and reconciliations to the most directly comparable U.S. GAAP measures are included in the schedules to this press release.


2020 Full-Year

  • Reported diluted EPS of $5.16, up by 11.9%; up by 18.9%, excluding currency
  • Adjusted diluted EPS of $5.17, down by 0.4%; up by 7.0% on an organic basis
  • Cigarette and heated tobacco unit shipment volume down by 8.1% (reflecting cigarette shipment volume down by 11.1%, and heated tobacco unit shipment volume up by 27.6% to 76.1 billion units); down by 7.9% on a like-for-like basis
  • Market share for heated tobacco units in IQOS markets, excluding the U.S., up by 1.7 points to 6.1%
  • Net revenues down by 3.7%; down by 1.6% on an organic basis
  • Operating income up by 10.8%; up by 15.3%, excluding currency
  • Adjusted operating income up by 4.6% on an organic basis
  • Adjusted operating income margin of 40.8%, up by 2.4 points on an organic basis
  • Increased the regular quarterly dividend per share by 2.6% to an annualized rate of $4.80
  • Total IQOS users at year-end estimated at approximately 17.6 million, of which approximately 12.7 million have switched to IQOS and stopped smoking
  • On July 7, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the marketing of a version of IQOS as a Modified Risk Tobacco Product
  • On December 7, 2020, the U.S. FDA authorized the sale of the IQOS 3 device in the U.S. through the issuance of a premarket tobacco marketing order

2020 Fourth-Quarter

  • Reported diluted EPS of $1.27, up by 22.1%; up by 26.9%, excluding currency
  • Adjusted diluted EPS of $1.26, up by 3.3%; up by 7.4% on an organic basis
  • Cigarette and heated tobacco unit shipment volume down by 8.2% (reflecting cigarette shipment volume down by 11.7%, and heated tobacco unit shipment volume up by 26.9% to 21.7 billion units)
  • Market share for heated tobacco units in IQOS markets, excluding the U.S., up by 1.8 points to 6.7%
  • Net revenues down by 3.5%; down by 3.5% on an organic basis
  • Operating income up by 15.9%; up by 17.8%, excluding currency
  • Adjusted operating income up by 1.7% on an organic basis
  • Adjusted operating income margin of 38.5%, up by 2.0 points on an organic basis

“In 2020, PMI delivered a robust business performance despite the unprecedented headwinds of the COVID-19 pandemic, with adjusted diluted EPS organic growth of 7.0%, supported by stronger-than-anticipated fourth-quarter results,” said André Calantzopoulos, Chief Executive Officer.

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“We must first and foremost salute the enormous efforts of the entire PMI organization to keep our employees and their families safe, ensure business continuity, rapidly adapt our ways of working and help our local communities.”

“IQOS continued to deliver impressive growth in 2020, driving significant increases in our total users, as well as both HTU shipment and in-market sales volumes. During the fourth quarter, we reported record HTU market shares in key IQOS geographies, and exited the year with double-digit national shares in ten markets.”

“We enter 2021 with favourable momentum, although certain headwinds remain, notably related to Duty-Free, Indonesia and the continued effects of the pandemic. For the full year, we are expecting a significant recovery, with mid-single-digit organic net revenue growth—driven by the growing contribution of IQOS—and further efforts on cost efficiencies driving an acceleration in forecasted adjusted diluted EPS growth to a range of 9% to 11% on the same basis.”


Reported diluted EPS forecast to be in a range of $5.90 to $6.00, at prevailing exchange rates, representing a projected increase of around 14% to 16% versus reported diluted EPS of $5.16 in 2020.

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Excluding a favourable currency impact, at prevailing exchange rates, of approximately $0.25 per share, this forecast represents a projected increase of around 9% to 11% versus adjusted diluted EPS of $5.17 in 2020, as detailed in the above table.

2021 Full-Year Forecast Assumptions

This forecast assumes:

  • A gradual improvement in the general operating environment, with potential volatility around the duration and effects of pandemic-related mobility restrictions across PMI’s key markets;
  • Lack of near-term recovery in PMI’s duty-free business given the uncertain outlook for global travel, with current dynamics persisting through year-end;
  • An estimated total international industry volume progression, excluding China and the U.S., of approximately -3% to flat;
  • A total cigarette and heated tobacco unit shipment volume progression for PMI of approximately -2% to +1%;
  • Heated tobacco unit shipment volume of 90 to 100 billion units;
  • Net revenue growth of approximately 4% to 7%, on an organic basis;
  • An increase in adjusted operating income margin of at least 150 basis points on an organic basis;
  • Operating cash flow of approximately $11 billion at prevailing exchange rates and subject to year-end working capital requirements;
  • Capital expenditures of approximately $0.8 billion;
  • An effective tax rate, excluding discrete tax events, of around 22%;
  • No share repurchases; and
  • First-quarter reported diluted EPS of around $1.40, including a favourable currency impact, at prevailing exchange rates, of around $0.09 per share, notably reflecting:
    • Net revenue that is down slightly too broadly stable on an organic basis, with an unfavourable comparison versus the first quarter of 2019; and
    • Strong operating income margin growth, primarily driven by the growing weight of IQOS in the business and continued cost efficiencies.
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The foregoing is underpinned by the assumption that, even in the event of prolonged pandemic-related restrictions, there will not be a return to the depressed consumption levels of the second quarter of 2020. This assumption is consistent with the less severe impact on consumption levels observed in the second half of 2020 as COVID-19 spread in a number of markets.

This forecast excludes the impact of any future acquisitions, unanticipated or unquantifiable asset impairment and exit cost charges, future changes in currency exchange rates, further developments pertaining to the judgment in the two Québec Class Action lawsuits and the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) protection granted to RBH, any unusual events, and any COVID-19-related developments different from the assumptions set forth in the company’s forecast.

Factors described in the Forward-Looking and Cautionary Statements section of this release represent continuing risks to these projections.

COVID-19: Business Continuity Update

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Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, PMI has undertaken a number of business continuity measures to mitigate potential disruption to its operations and route-to-market in order to preserve the availability of products to its customers and adult consumers.


  • PMI has sufficient access to the inputs for its products and is not facing any significant business continuity issues with respect to key suppliers;
  • All of PMI’s cigarette and heated tobacco unit manufacturing facilities globally are operational;
  • COVID-related restrictions do not have a significant impact on the availability of PMI’s products to its customers and adult consumers; and
  • PMI has ample liquidity through cash on hand, the ongoing cash generation of its business, and its access to the commercial paper and debt markets.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration Authorizes IQOS 3 for sale in the United States

On December 7, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) confirmed that IQOS 3, Philip Morris International’s electrically heated tobacco system, is appropriate for the protection of public health and authorized it for sale in the U.S. The FDA’s decision followed the assessment of a premarket tobacco product application (PMTA) filed with the agency in March 2020.

The IQOS 3 device contains a number of technological advancements compared to a previously authorized IQOS device (IQOS 2.4), including longer battery life and quicker recharge between uses.

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In its decision, the FDA noted that international survey data reviewed by the agency found no evidence of increased uptake of IQOS by youth or young adults, while use patterns available for the previously authorized version of IQOS within the U.S. have not raised new concerns regarding product use in youth and young adults.

The IQOS 3 PMTA authorization is independent of the modified risk tobacco product application (MRTPA) authorization for IQOS 2.4. PMI expects to file an application seeking an exposure modification order for IQOS 3.

Brazil Indirect Tax Credit

Following a final and enforceable decision by the highest court in Brazil in October 2020, PMI recorded a gain of $119 million for tax credits representing overpayments of indirect taxes for the period from March 2012 through December 2019. These tax credits will be applied to future tax liabilities in Brazil.

A decision regarding an additional amount of overpaid indirect taxes of approximately $90 million is still pending before this court.

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Philip Morris Revenue Falls, But Profit Climbs in Q4 2020 - Brand SpurPhilip Morris Revenue Falls, But Profit Climbs in Q4 2020 - Brand Spur

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Philip Morris Revenue Falls, But Profit Climbs in Q4 2020 - Brand SpurPhilip Morris Revenue Falls, But Profit Climbs in Q4 2020 - Brand Spur

Latest News

Vivocom’s Group Game Changer – Multi-Billion Sand Project Secured

  • Initial contract worth RM3.79 billion for three years
  • Aspires to be a major industry player 'with exponential growth prospects'

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - Media OutReach - 26 February 2021 - In a filing to Bursa Malaysia this evening, Vivocom Intl Holdings Berhad ('Vivocom') announced that V Development Group via one of its subsidiaries has secured a 'massive win' worth approximately USD934.7 million or the equivalent of RM3.79 billion.

Rain International Sdn Bhd ('Rain International') is a 97% owned subsidiary under the V Development Group which was recently merged into the Vivocom Group. The Company's proposed acquisition of V Development Group had been recently approved by the relevant authorities.

Rain International is principally involved in the mineral trading and exportation business, supplying sand to its client mainly in Hong Kong and China for reclamation and construction works. The Company had recently signed a contract for the supply of marine sand for a minimum period of three years.

The contract is for the supply of sand to Zhen Hua Engineering Company Ltd-China Communications Construction Company Ltd-CCCC Dredging (Group) Company Ltd. (ZHEC-CCCC-CDC), a Joint Venture contractor appointed to undertake the main reclamation works for the Hong Kong International Airport Three Runway System Project.

Director Mr William Chan Ching-Kee said: "As the appointed agent for the ZHECC-CCCC-CDC Joint Venture, we are looking forward to the exportation of sand from Malaysia to our client in Hong Kong to commence without any further delay."

Dato Seri Chia is optimistic that the contract would be extended for another two to three years and could potentially generate revenue of up to RM6 billion.

"The sand business is a major boost because it gives us tremendous visibility. The potential revenue is huge, recurring and highly scalable," its jubilant CEO, Dato Seri Chia Kok Teong exclaimed.

"The potential for explosive growth in the sand business is real and tangible, and bodes well for the Group in the next few years."

"We are starting with 3 years but the contract can easily be increased to 5 years and beyond, with higher tonnage shipped every 6 months. The exportation of sand will increase sharply over time," he added.

Besides the reclamation works for the Hong Kong International Airport, the rapid pace of construction and reclamation works in China and Singapore also requires heavy demand for sand, which is a considerable boon to Malaysia.

"The market for sand export is extremely humongous and will fuel the Group's rapid growth for the next several years. The RM3.79 billion Win is the first of many more to come."

"I have in fact urged my team to secure up to RM10 billion worth of sand contracts by the end of 2021. This is part of our overall transformation strategy to become a multi billions conglomerate," declared Dato Seri Chia.

"It is our core strategy to strengthen and diversify the Group's revenues generation capabilities and capacities and not be too narrowly focussed."

"Presently, we are already in negotiations for another RM2 to RM3 billion sand contract. Once finalised, we will make the relevant announcement as per Bursa Malaysia's requirements," Dato Seri Chia elaborated.

The sand would be procured from an approved permit holder to export sand overseas, and sourced from concession areas in Sandakan and Sungai Beluran in Sabah and throughout Malaysia.

"Even with this massive sand contract already secured, we will not be complacent. I have earlier promised to transform Vivocom into a behemoth Conglomerate and I will work non-stop to deliver on the promise," Dato Seri assured.

Since Dato Seri Chia's entry into Vivocom in January 2020 when its price was at 15 cents, the share has climbed sharply and last closed at RM1.06 on Thursday, 25th February 2021.

"I am very optimistic that Vivocom shares will continue to grow strongly and be worth a lot more than presently over time. I'm proud to say that we are no longer a penny stock," he reflected.

"My team is totally committed to building Vivocom into a reputable and profitable public company, one with solid fundamentals, sustainable profits and healthy cashflows."

"As a priority, we will work towards getting the Group elevated to the Main Board of Bursa Malaysia and be a dividends-paying company soonest possible," quipped Dato Seri.

To show his commitment, Dato Seri Chia has undertaken a voluntary self--imposed moratorium (or SIM) in that he will not dispose his personal stakes in Vivocom for the next 3 years. This will ensure the company's long-term price stability and sustainability.

"We want a stable and strong share price so that the Company can use its shares with its high liquidity as a currency for M&A activities to fund and fast-track expansion and growth," he explained.

"A strong share with high liquidity is a most valuable and prized asset. We will use it to buy Companies with game-changing and disruptive strategies. To look for the Next Big Thing."

"The enormous followings in the Company are what is driving in tremendous liquidity and momentum giving our share price added impetus," Dato Seri proudly asserts.

"We aspire to emulate Berkshire Hathaway strategy started over 40 years ago by Mr Warren Buffet. Mr Masayoshi Son built SoftBank Group of Japan along the same philosophy and Alphabet in US adopted similar strategies."

"These three companies are presently amongst the most valuable and admired companies in the world. I have the same dream for Vivocom. I am determined to leave behind an enduring legacy for all our valued shareholders," concluded Dato Seri Chia.

Philip Morris Revenue Falls, But Profit Climbs in Q4 2020 - Brand Spur
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