Benecol-Maker Raisio Posts Decline In Net Sales In Q1
Finland-based Raisio Group, the maker of Benecol, has posted an 18.9% decrease in net sales in its first quarter, to €92.5 million.
The group said that sales were down as a result of a weak performance in the UK for both its Benecol brand and its confectionery business, due to a weaker pound.
'In the UK, the profitability of confectionery business fell due to a sales decline in our own branded products and delivery difficulties,' a company statement read. 'To ensure Raisio’s future success, it is essential that we take resolute action to remedy and improve the situation.'
Raisio's comparable EBIT for the period was up €0.9 million, to €10.6 million, with its relative profitability increasing to 11.4% from 8.5% in the first quarter of 2016.
Key drivers in its earnings improvement were the divestment of a loss-making snack-bar business in the UK and organic growth in its healthy-snacks business.
"During the first months of this year, we have been working on our business strategies and identified several growth opportunities," said chief executive Jarmo Putti.
"We have also looked critically at our opportunities and taken account of the increasingly rapid changes in the operating environment. Through our strong balance sheet, we also have an opportunity to be an active player in M&A."
Looking ahead to the coming year, Raisio will invest in its brands, product concepts, sales and marketing, and also in 'enhancing its operations', with a view to driving 'future growth and success'. It expects its EBIT for full-year 2017 to be slightly down on the previous year.
Putti added that the company is determined "to expand into new markets and new product categories, as well as the ability to launch new products faster. With these measures, we ensure profitable growth."
© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up for ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.