German meal-kit maker HelloFresh said that it expects growth to re-accelerate in the second half of this year, as it reported a 31.5% rise in its second-quarter core earnings, driven by operational efficiencies and controlled marketing spend.
Quarterly adjusted core profit (AEBITDA) at HelloFresh rose to €191.9 million, from €145.9 million a year ago and at the upper end of its previously forecast range of €185 million to €195 million.
An increase in the average order value also contributed to a rise in core profit, the company said.
Active customers, however, declined 8.7% in the quarter to 7.3 million.
“While being faced with an overall soft consumer environment in the second quarter of 2023, we remain laser focused on providing our customers with a superior product," commented CEO Dominik Richter. "We have made continuous progress with regards to the level of convenience, choice and flexibility and I am proud of our teams for going the extra mile."
Higher Marketing Costs
HelloFresh, which like other players in the sector is facing higher marketing costs as it seeks to retain customers amid reopening economies and weaker consumer spending, has benefited from stronger average order value due to inflation and higher prices for products it markets under different brands.
It said in April that it aimed to launch ready-to-eat products in the Benelux region towards the end of the third quarter, and in other European markets in 2024.
'Profitable growth remains our top priority going into 2024 and we expect to take advantage of opportunities as they arise,' the company said in a statement.
The meal-kit firm confirmed its full-year forecast released in July of adjusted EBITDA between €470 million and €540 million, and revenue growth of 2% to 8% on a constant-currency basis.
Additional reporting by ESM