CSM EBITA dips as divestment process continues

by Jeff Gelski
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DIEMEN, THE NETHERLANDS — EBITA for CSM n.v. in fiscal year 2012 dropped to €123.9 million ($160.4 million), down from €130.2 million in the previous year, as one-off costs totaled €46.9 million. The divestment process of the bakery supplies businesses accounted for €28.7 million, and a restructuring program also contributed to one-off costs.

Excluding the one-off costs, EBITA in the fiscal year was €170.8 million, a 13% increase from €150.8 million. Exchange rates had a positive impact of €12.1 million on EBITA.

Fiscal-year net sales increased 6.5% to €3,315.7 million ($4,291.7 million) from €3,112.6 million. The effect of acquisitions contributed €24.5 million. Exchange rate differences, especially the U.S. dollar, positively impacted sales by €166 million. Adjusted for acquisition and currency effects, organic sales growth was €12.6 million, or 0.4%.

On May 7, 2012, CSM announced it intended to transform into a bio-based ingredients company focusing on its Purac and Caravan Ingredients businesses. CSM began a divestment process for its North American and European Bakery Supplies businesses. CSM expects to complete the divestment this year.

“For 2013, we have several major tasks on our hands,” said Gerard Hoetmer, chief executive officer of Diemen-based CSM, in a March 13 conference call. “Firstly, of course, we expect to divest our bakery supplies business, and we are working hard to further that process.

“Secondly, we are building a new bio-based ingredients organization centered on Caravan Ingredients and Purac. And as far as the business climate is concerned, we see a continued uncertain and challenging macro environment. On the other hand, we should see some benefits from less volatile raw material prices.”

CSM’s Bakery Supplies North America had EBITA of €117.7 million ($151.2 million) in fiscal year 2012, which was up from €85.1 million in the previous fiscal year. Excluding one-off costs, EBITA was €123.6 million, up from €94.9 million.

Fiscal-year net sales at Bakery Supplies North America rose to €1,780.7 million ($2,287.1 million) from €1,627.6 million. Average higher sales prices of 3.5% offset lower volumes sold due to an unfavorable economic climate.

The volume decline of 2.4% was in line with or better than the market, according to CSM. Volumes at Caravan Ingredients, currently a part of Bakery Supplies North America and based in Lenexa, Kas., declined by 1%.

In Bakery Supplies Europe, fiscal-year EBITA was €16.9 million, down from €35.8 million. Excluding one-off costs, EBITA dropped to €33.1 million from €38.4 million. Net sales rose to €1,118.2 million from €1,077.8 million. A decline in the artisan channel was not as pronounced as in the previous quarters. Bakery Supplies Europe compensated with growth in the in-store bakery channel.

“As many consumers in Western markets had to cut their spending, supermarkets got a boost as a primary outlet for bakery products,” CSM said. “With an offering of high-quality but premium-priced products, artisan bakeries have a natural disadvantage in these days and had to accept a stronger decline in 2012 than over the previous years.”

In CSM’s Purac business, fiscal-year EBITA was €39.2 million, down from €41.9 million. Excluding one-off costs, EBITA was €40.3 million, down from €46.1 million. Purac’s fiscal-year net sales rose to €416.8 million from €407.2 million. The Chemicals and Pharma segment had higher sales, but the Food Ingredients segment had lower sales.

Companywide, CSM in the fourth quarter had EBITA of €36.3 million, up from €27.4 million in the previous year’s fourth quarter, and net sales of €855.8 million, up from €802.5 million. Excluding one-off costs, fourth-quarter EBITA was €56.7 million, up from €40.3 million. CSM’s net debt in the fiscal year decreased by €104.7 million and ended the year at €510.9 million.
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