Südzucker Sees 'Significant Improvement' In Performance In First Nine Months
Südzucker AG has reported a 'significant improvement' in performance, with consolidated revenues amounting to €5.1 billion in the first nine months of its financial year, up from €5.03 billion in the same period last year.
Consolidated group operating profit increased to €195 million, from €113 million, driven by reduced sugar segment losses and improved results in the special products and CropEnergies segments.
The company's CropEnergies division saw a slight decline in revenue, while revenues in the sugar and fruit segments were on a par with the previous year's levels.
The special products segment reported a moderate increase in revenue, the company added.
In the sugar division, sales revenues were higher, but volumes were substantially lower, partly due to reduced sugar production in the 2019 campaign.
The short-term positive effects of 'hamstering' in the retail sector at the beginning of the financial year were negated later due to lower demand from the sugar processing industry, the company added.
The division trimmed its operating loss to €80 million in the first nine months, from €146 million in the same period in 2019.
In the special products segment, growth continued in the third quarter, with revenues for the first three quarters increasing to €1.9 billion year-on-year, from €1.8 billion in 2019.
Südzucker Group expects to produce 3.5 million tonnes of sugar from 24.2 million tonnes of sugar beets in its current financial year.
The company saw a below-average sugar beet crop due to droughts in spring, severe virus infestation in France, Belgium and parts of Germany in summer, as well as leaf diseases in Poland and the AGRANA areas in Vienna.
The sugar giant said that its full-year forecast for 2020/21 is no longer achievable due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The company now expects consolidated group revenues in the range of €6.6 to €6.8 billion, with a slight decline in revenues in the sugar segment.
The company also projected a slight increase in revenues in the special products and fruit segments, while the CropEnergies segment is expected to see revenue ranging between €765 and €795 million.