AGRANA Beteiligungs-AG

EANS-News: AGRANA: strong results for first half of 2011|12

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quarterly report/6-month report


Wien (euro adhoc) - In the first half of the 2011|12 financial year (ended 31
August 2011), AGRANA markedly boosted both revenue (by 19.7% to EUR 1,284.7
million) and operating profit before exceptional items (by 82.4% to EUR 118.2
million). All three segments - Sugar, Starch and Fruit - contributed to this
growth. It reflects both the rewards of the optimisation measures taken in the
previous years, and good market conditions for the Group during the first six
months of this financial year.

As a result of the dissolution of two Chinese joint ventures in the fruit juice
concentrate business, exceptional items amounted to a net expense of about EUR
1.5 million. After a net financial items expense of EUR 17.9 million and a tax
expense of EUR 21.2 million (based on a tax rate of 21.4%), the Group´s profit
for the period was EUR 77.7 million. In the first six months, the Group was able
to reduce its net debt by 7.9% to EUR 352.2 million. The equity ratio improved
to 50.6% and the ratio of net debt to total equity, at 35.1%, was significantly
lower than on 28 February 2011.

AGRANA - IFRS results for the period ended 31 August

                             Q2 11|12     Q2 10|11       H1 11|12       H1 10|11
Revenue                   EUR 671.8 m  EUR 532.9 m  EUR 1,284.7 m  EUR 1,073.3 m
EBITDA                     EUR 73.7 m   EUR 48.4 m    EUR 152.2 m    EUR 100.2 m
Operating profit before
exceptional items          EUR 56.6 m   EUR 30.5 m    EUR 118.2 m     EUR 64.8 m
Operating margin                8.4 %        5.7 %          9.2 %          6.0 %
Operating profit after
exceptional items          EUR 55.1 m   EUR 30.5 m    EUR 116.7 m     EUR 64.8 m
Profit for the period      EUR 34.6 m   EUR 17.4 m     EUR 77.7 m     EUR 37.4 m
Earnings per share          EUR 2.43    EUR 1.19        EUR 5.36       EUR 2.57
Purchases of property,
plant and equipment
and intangibles (1)        EUR 21.3 m  EUR 11.5 m      EUR 35.5 m     EUR 19.1 m
Average staff count                                         8.177       8.798

(1) Excluding goodwill


AGRANA Chief Executive Officer Johann Marihart says: "Of course we are very
pleased with the first two quarters of the financial year! Although the
volatility in raw material markets makes forecasting more difficult, we expect
the full financial year to bring revenue growth and a significant rise in
operating profit before exceptional items. We invest capital in all three
segments to provide solid support for our long-term growth trajectory."

Sugar segment

                            Q2 11|12     Q2 10|11     H1 11|12     H1 10|11
Revenue                  EUR 253.9 m  EUR 185.0 m  EUR 435.9 m  EUR 366.2 m
Operating profit before
exceptional items         EUR 31.6 m    EUR 8.7 m   EUR 50.6 m   EUR 12.3 m
Operating margin              11.4 %        3.4 %       11.6 %        3.4 %

Revenue in the Sugar segment grew by 19.0%. The rise in world market prices and
the dependence on imports from the world market created by the European Union´s
sugar policy sharply drove up the EU price level. While the supply was tight,
sales volumes of quota sugar were steady. Through timely raw material
procurement, AGRANA was able to honour all agreements with customers regarding
prices and quantities. These measures, combined with vigorous marketing and the
agile seizing of market opportunities - such as the scope for additional imports
and the sale of non-quota sugar on the EU food market upon approval by the
European Commission - led to a pronounced increase in pre-exceptionals operating
profit.

Starch segment 
                          Q2 11|12     Q2 10|11     H1 11|12     H1 10|11
Revenue                EUR 194.4 m  EUR 137.2 m  EUR 387.7 m  EUR 272.6 m
Operating profit before
exceptional items       EUR 13.7 m  EUR 15.5 m    EUR 36.2 m   EUR 30.8 m
Operating margin             7.0 %      11.3 %         9.3 %       11.3 %


The Starch segment´s revenue growth of 42.2% in the first six months resulted
mainly from higher selling prices. Also in volume terms, the prior-year period
was slightly surpassed. Therefore, the increase in raw material prices could be
compensated which allowed operating profit before exceptional items to rise by
17.5%. The restricted physical supply in the sugar market also had the effect of
boosting sales of starch saccharification products.

Fruit segment 

                          Q2 11|12          Q210|11       H1 11|12   H1 10|11
Revenue                 EUR 223.6 m     EUR 210.6 m   EUR 461.1 m  EUR 434.5 m
Operating profit before
exceptional items        EUR 13.8 m       EUR 8.9 m    EUR 31.4 m   EUR 21.7 m
Operating margin              6.2 %           4.2 %         6.8 %        5.0 %

Revenue in the Fruit segment increased by 6.1% in the first half of the
financial year. In fruit preparations, upward price adjustments largely offset
lower sales volumes. In the fruit juice concentrate activities, prices were
stable at a high absolute level while quantities eased somewhat. Operating
profit in the Fruit segment was up by 44.7% thanks to the strong results in
fruit juice concentrates. 

Outlook


For the full 2011|12 financial year, based on the strong results of the first
six months, AGRANA expects an expansion in Group revenue and a significant
increase in pre-exceptionals operating profit. We expect that the operating
profit improvement should be driven primarily by the Sugar and Starch segments
and that it should be achieved by a range of measures that also include further
process optimisation and energy efficiency gains. The volatility in raw material
prices though makes it difficult to arrive at exact forecasts for the second
half of the year.

This press release as well as the half-year report 2011/12 is also available on
AGRANA´s website at www.agrana.com.


Further inquiry note:
AGRANA Beteiligungs-AG
Mag.(FH) Hannes Haider
Investor Relations
Tel.: +43-1-211 37-12905
e-mail:hannes.haider@agrana.com

Mag.(FH) Christine Göller
Public Relations
Tel.: +43-1-211 37-12084
e-mail: christine.goeller@agrana.com

end of announcement                               euro adhoc 
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company:     AGRANA Beteiligungs-AG
             Donau-City-Straße 9
             A-1220 Wien
phone:       +43-1-21137-0
FAX:         +43-1-21137-12045
mail:     info.ab@agrana.com
WWW:      www.agrana.com
sector:      Food
ISIN:        AT0000603709
indexes:     WBI, ATX Prime
stockmarkets: Präsenzhandel: Berlin, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, official market: Wien 
language:   English
 



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