Acquisition drives growth at Barry Callebaut

Sales volumes at Barry Callebaut have increased by 19.5%, following the acquisition of the Cocoa Ingredients Division of Singapore-based Petra Foods last summer.

Discounting the acquisition, sales rose 4.6% for the three months to 30 November 2013, to 406,163 tonnes. Including the acquisition, volumes rose from 388,160 tonnes to 463,996 tonnes.

Sales revenue increased by 5.5%, excluding the acquisition, to CHF1.3bn (£890m), and 21.4% including it, to CHF1.5bn (£1.01bn).

In addition to the purchase, the firm put the main growth drivers down to the gourmet sector and its success in emerging markets.

Within its European business, volumes increased by 1.5% to 204,075 tonnes.

Barry Callebaut said that cocoa terminal market prices continued to increase during the three-month period, reaching a two-year high on 20 November 2013 at £1,782.

“With strong arrivals from the two most important cocoa origins, Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, market players gradually reduced their deficit expectations. This slowed the bullish momentum in cocoa prices, which closed at £1,745 per tonne at the end of November,” said Callebaut.

Juergen Steinemann, chief executive, Barry Callebaut, said: “We have had a solid start into the new fiscal year. Our three key growth drivers – geographic expansion, outsourcing & partnership agreements, and our gourmet business – have maintained their momentum, with emerging markets and gourmet delivering particularly strong growth.”

In July 2013, British Baker reported that Barry Callebaut had closed its acquisition of the cocoa division from Petra Foods, for around $860m (£563.5m).

The firm said it was an excellent strategic fit, which resonated with the core of its existing business, and supported its overall growth plans.

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