Tate & Lyle's profits rise despite sucralose results

by Jeff Gelski
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LONDON — Preliminary results show Tate & Lyle, P.L.C. recorded sales of £4.07 billion ($8.09 billion) for the year ended March 31, which compared with £3.72 billion ($7.39 billion) in the previous year. Profit before taxation rose to £337 million from £42 million even though the company was disappointed in a modest rise in its Splenda sucralose sales, Tate & Lyle said May 23.

"This is the third consecutive year in which Tate & Lyle has recorded double-digit pre-tax profit growth, "said Sir David Lee, chairman of the London-based company. "Growth this year has been driven substantially by our Food & Industrial Ingredients businesses, which together achieved a 36% increase in adjusted operating profit."

Splenda sucralose operating profit grew 3% to £70 million. Sucralose sales rose 8% to £147 million, but Tate & Lyle at one time expected a sales increase of 30%.

Tate & Lyle gave three reasons for the disappointing sucralose results: product development life-cycles returning to more normal levels, the depletion of customers’ security stocks of the high-intensity sweetener in response to the company’s new capacity coming on board, and volumes to the U.S. carbonated soft drink market not meeting expectations.

In the year to end March 31, 2008, Tate & Lyle expects to continue the geographic and product expansion of Splenda sucralose.

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