Austen Hufford reports in The Wall Street Journal about 3M’s growing success as America reopens. He writes:
3M Co. MMM +4.14% said it expects sales across its product lines to grow this year as vaccinations against Covid-19 allow people to start using more of its products at dental offices, workplaces and schools.
Demand for the St. Paul, Minn.-based manufacturer’s products varied widely last year. The pandemic created enormous pressure on demand for the N95 face masks that medical workers wear to guard against the virus. But sales of other products such as Post-it Notes used by office workers and teeth-polishing discs used by dentists were hurt by social-distancing measures. In December, the company said it planned to cut nearly 3,000 jobs, reflecting slumping demand for some of its products.
For 2021, 3M said it expects revenue excluding acquisitions and currency fluctuations to grow up to 6%. 3M had pulled its guidance early in the pandemic; restoring it indicates the company has more confidence in forecasting how the months ahead will play out. 3M said it would restart buying back its shares, a common practice to return cash to shareholders.
“We expect a return to healthy growth,” Chief Executive Mike Roman told analysts on a call Tuesday.
Read more here.