Nutreco reports higher first-half results

Share buy-back program will be initiated in second half

Animal nutrition and fish feed manufacturer Nutreco reported first half 2014 revenue of EUR2.46 billion (US$3.3 billion), a 2.6 percent increase from a year ago.

“We are pleased to report a satisfying first half year operating result of EUR108.2 million, which has been achieved due to better performances in all segments,” said Knut Nesse, CEO.

The company’s animal nutrition EBITA increased 4.7 percent to EUR59.6 million, up from last year, which was EUR56.9 million. The increase is credited to good performance in mature markets and a continued focus on higher value-added nutritional solutions.

Fish feed EBITA increase by 23.9 percent to EUR43.5 million. This increase mainly was driven by higher salmon feed volumes in Norway due to exceptional market circumstances and the contribution of the operating companies in Ecuador and Egypt, which were acquired in 2013.

Nutreco’s Compound Feed & Meat Iberia EBITA of EUR18.1 million was 31.2 percent higher than 2013, mainly due to lower raw material prices and good chicken and pork meat prices.

“We are pleased with the higher results in … the unit for which we started a process to explore a possible divestment. During the process, we continuously operated with the clear intention that any valuation for the businesses should reflect their market-leading positions, solid financial results and future potential. As these discussions developed, it became clear that no fair valuation could be obtained at the current time,” Nesse said. “Accordingly, as we communicated on 11 June, the divestment process was halted in the best interests of all stakeholders; these businesses are now again reported as continued operations. The Iberian businesses are well-managed and combine market leadership with operational excellence.”

Share buy-back program

Nutreco says it will initiate an additional share buy-back program of EUR100 million in the second half.

“Nutreco is a cash generative company and we will use our financial strength to support organic growth and make selective acquisitions. As we are continuously exploring acquisition opportunities, we continue to expect to make one or two strategic acquisitions a year,” Nesse said. “Currently we have ample financial room to achieve our growth objectives, so in order to optimize the efficiency of our balance sheet and enhance future earnings per share, we will undertake an additional share buy-back program of EUR100 million in the second half of the year.”