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Molson Coors could start paying dividends again.

Molson Coors Beverage (TPX.B) expects to reinstate dividend payment in the second quarter of the current fiscal year after its first-quarter profit exceeded analysts’ expectations despite falling nearly 10 % of its income compared to a year earlier.

The brewer suspended dividend payments and went on layoffs last May due to uncertainty generated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Molson Coors, which maintains its books of account in US dollars, says its net income attributable to shareholders rose to the US $ 84.1 million or 39 US cents per share, on a diluted basis, for the quarter ended March 31. By comparison, a loss of US $ 117 million or 54 cents per share was recorded in the first quarter of 2020.

Net sales totaled the US $ 1.9 billion, down from the US $ 2.1 billion the previous year.

During that time, the company suffered a cyberattack, preceded by a winter storm in Texas that shut down its Fort Worth brewery, in addition to having to contend with health restrictions on sales in the UK.

Excluding one-time items, Molson Coors reported underlying earnings of US $ 1.6 million or US 1 cent per share, compared to the US $ 77 million or US 35 cents per share in the first three months of 2020.

Analysts polled by financial data firm Refinitiv were forecasting a loss of US 10 cents per share, from revenue of US $ 1.88 billion.

“Our core iconic brands continue to show growth. For example, in the United States, Coors Light posted the best performance in its class at the end of the first quarter of 2021 since the first quarter of 2017, and the Coors Banquet posted its best quarterly performance in terms of volume in over four years,” President and CEO Gavin Hattersley said in a statement.

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