Zoetis Inc. (NYSE: ZTS) has announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a $1.5 billion multi-year share repurchase program as part of its long-term capital allocation plans. The shares are expected to be repurchased at the discretion of management over a multi-year period, and the program can be cancelled at any time. The company’s previous $500 million share repurchase program, which was approved in November 2014, is expected to be completed at the end of this year.
The Board of Directors also declared a first quarter 2017 dividend of $0.105 per share, an increase of 10.5% from the quarterly dividend rate paid in 2016. The dividend is to be paid on March 1, 2017, to holders of record of the company’s common stock on Jan. 20.
“Our consistent performance, the improvements to our cost structure, as well as the strength of our business model, have Zoetis well-positioned to generate cash for future growth and value creation opportunities,” said Juan Ramón Alaix, Chief Executive Officer at Zoetis. “Today’s new share repurchase program, along with the dividend increase, is a demonstration of our ongoing commitment to return excess capital to shareholders as part of our value proposition.”
“Our financial strength and improved cash flow allow us to balance disciplined investment in both internal and external growth opportunities with the return of excess capital to our shareholders through a flexible share repurchase program and a growing dividend,” said Glenn David, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.