Wessanen reports positive net profit and reduced debts

Amstelveen, May 11, 2005 Results reported according to IFRS and unaudited Highlights first quarter 2005 Net income Q1 2005 EUR 3.5 million positive compared to a loss of EUR (7.5) million last year. EBITAE amounted to EUR 12 million (Q1 2004: EUR 13 million). Decrease mainly due to non-recurring effect on profitability of Private Label in Q1 2004. Due to deliberately terminated turnover and the decline in low-carb sales, sales at constant exchange rates decreased to EUR 488.7 million (Q1 2004: EUR 576.2 million). First branded innovations introduced to stimulate growth. Net debt level at EUR 84.3 million, a further reduction of EUR 12.8 million compared to year- end 2004. Positive cash flow from operations of EUR 24.1 million. Outlook 2005 Wessanen reiterates it expects EBITAE in 2005 to continue to improve and arrive anywhere between EUR 70 to 85 million. The expected improvement is anticipated for the second half of 2005. The outcome is dependent on a number of variable factors, such as market developments and the effect of price pressure in the European retail channel, the speed of the completion of the turnaround in the US Distribution business, the development in raw material prices (meat, fuel, resin) , and the rate of decline of low-carb sales. The company will narrow down the range when further insight in aforementioned factors develops. As announced in March 2005, based on strategic grounds, Wessanen proposes to raise dividend pay-out for the coming years to EUR 0.65 per share.
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