Baked foods group sees profits rise

Irish-Swiss baked foods group Aryzta has reported a near-7% rise in annual revenues, with the contribution from acquired subsidiaries growing almost 12% on the previous year.

Baked foods group sees profits rise

Aryzta — established via the 2008 merger of IAWS and Swiss group Hiestand — yesterday said that group revenue for the 12 months to the end of July amounted to just over €4.8bn, a 6.8% rise on the previous year.

Group earnings before interest, tax, and amortisation increased 19% to €566m and underlying net profits amounted to €378m, an 18.3% jump on the preceding 12 months. Underlying fully diluted earnings per share increased 17.2% to 422.2c.

Revenues from Aryzta’s food interests increased by 10% to just shy of €3.4bn. That total was boosted by a strong performance from its European operations — which saw a 14% increase in annual revenues, to nearly €1.6bn — and its Food North America division, which increased sales by 8.7% to €1.59bn.

However, revenues from the group’s rest-of-the-world food operations declined 5.7% to €221m.

Aryzta chief executive Owen Killian said the group had delivered “a strong performance” for 2014, particularly noting the underlying earnings per share growth in the final year of the group’s three-year transformation programme.

“Our alignment with the requirements of major food corporations will facilitate long-term growth, while the creation of Aryzta Food Solutions will bring value and differentiation to independent customers,” he said.

Mr Killian added that the group remains financially “disciplined” and “very cash-generative”, which, he said, will support its continued investment and sector consolidation.

Aryzta’s figures were ahead of forecast, leaving the business well-placed for continued growth in its current financial year, according to Davy Stockbrokers’ Cathal Kenny.

He added that Davy is likely to modestly adjust upwards its full-year 2015 earnings per share targets regarding Aryzta.

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