Wessanen Q1 2013 trading update

Q1 2013 highlights

  • Autonomous revenue growth (1.0)%, impacted by our strategy to rationalise product portfolio
  • Normalised operating result significantly up to €9.3 million
  • Our transformational programme 'Wessanen 2015' is well under way
  • Acquisition Alter Eco, the leading French brand in fair-trade; 2012 sales €16.5 million

CEO statement

Piet Hein Merckens (CEO) commented: "In the first quarter of the year, consumer confidence has deteriorated and unemployment has increased in Europe. Under these circumstances we have nevertheless been able to make significant progress. Most of our core categories have continued to grow whilst the implementation of our transformational programme 'Wessanen 2015' runs smoothly. This will lead us in becoming a more profitable company, being more focused on its core activities, more agile and more efficient.

Revenue growth has been subdued this quarter - as I expect it will be in the coming quarters - mostly due to deliberate actions on our side to reduce complexity by cutting the tail of our range of products in our grocery and HFS operations and to withdraw from low-yielding activities such as German and Italian grocery. Profitability was up due to increased gross profit, the first tangible results from our restructuring and healthy performances in numerous of our businesses, next to a favourable year-on-year comparison.

I am very pleased to notice consumer appreciation for healthy and nutritional food continuously growing. I am equally pleased with the fact that consumers gradually incorporate more of a sustainable agenda when making their food purchases. Over the past months we also witness mainstream consumers getting more and more engaged with healthier and organic food. Organic food is at the centre of what we do and who we are. I am therefore very enthusiastic about the acquisition of Alter Eco. Its brand, products and philosophy are complementary to these of our successful French business. After the acquisition of Clipper early 2012, this acquisition will be another milestone in the execution of our strategy of strengthening our European leadership in organic food."

Analyst & investor meeting

At 10h00 CET, an analyst, investor & media call will be hosted by Ronald Merckx (CFO). The dial-in number is +31 (0) 20 794 8504 (toll free 0800 265 8528). The press release and presentation will be available for download at www.wessanen.com.

Press, investor and analyst enquiries

Carl Hoyer (VP Corporate Communications & Investor Relations)
Phone   +31 20 3122 140 / +316 123 556 58
Twitter   @RoyalWessanen

Download here full Q1 2013 trading update

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