HOCHDORF Holding AG

EQS-Adhoc: HOCHDORF Holding AG: Good operational results generated

EQS Group-Ad-hoc: HOCHDORF Holding AG / Key word(s): Half Year Results
HOCHDORF Holding AG: Good operational results generated

19.08.2015 / 07:00
Release of an ad hoc announcement pursuant to Art. 53 KR.
The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.

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HOCHDORF Group press release: Half-year results for 2015

Good operational results generated

Hochdorf, 19 August 2015 - The HOCHDORF Group processed 421.4 million kg of
milk, whey, permeate, and cream in the first half of the year (previous
year: 255.9 million kg; +64.7%). The Group generated gross sales revenue of
CHF 284.3 million (previous year: CHF 220.7 million; +28.8%). The strong
growth in these numbers was due to the acquisitions made in late 2014.
Without them, volume and turnover figures would have been slightly below
the previous year. At the start of the year, it was announced that EBIT
would come in at 2.8-3.0% of production revenue. This range has now been
increased to 3.2-3.8%.

For the first time, volume and turnover figures include Uckermärker Milch
GmbH and Marbacher Ölmühle GmbH, which were acquired in late 2014. As a
result, comparison with previous year figures is less meaningful. HOCHDORF
processed 421.4 million kg of milk, whey, permeate, and cream in the Group
as a whole - a significantly higher quantity of liquid than in the previous
year (255.9 million kg; +64.7%). Gross sales revenue came in at CHF 284.3
million. Turnover was somewhat lower than originally expected, which is
attributable to currency effects and to international milk prices, which
fell sharply and suddenly and in some cases led to lower product prices.
The HOCHDORF Group as a whole sold 125,767 tonnes of product (+150.6%
compared to the previous year).

Good results
In terms of income, the gross profit margin came in at 22.3%, which was
above the figure for the previous year (21.9%). In absolute terms, gross
profit of CHF 63.8 million was generated (+22.8% compared to the previous
year). The Group increased EBITDA from CHF 13.8 million to CHF 15.5 million
(+12.5%). EBIT came in at CHF 10.7 million, which was likewise slightly
ahead of the previous year's figure (CHF 10.2 million; +4.9% compared to
the previous year). Net profit stood at CHF 4.1 million (CHF 6.3 million;
-34.3% compared to the previous year), with the decline attributable solely
to currency effects. Overall, the Group has performed very well under
difficult markets conditions, achieving results that exceeded our
expectations.

Major currency effects
HOCHDORF estimates the negative impact of the currency turmoil on the
HOCHDORF Group as at 30 June 2015 to be CHF -20.8 million in terms of
turnover, meaning roughly CHF 4.8 million with regard to income. However,
these figures depend on further exchange rate developments. The abolition
of the minimum rate is impressive confirmation that HOCHDORF took the right
step with the foreign expansion undertaken in 2014. The investments in
Uckermärker Milch GmbH and Marbacher Ölmühle GmbH are proving to be right
in at least two ways: New markets are opening, and the strong Swiss franc
does not affect these markets. The only impact is the translation
difference when converting local balance sheets into the Group's reporting
currency.

Dairy Ingredients area
In Switzerland, the quantity of liquid purchased and processed fell in the
first half of the year by -7.5% to 212,258 tonnes. A total of 183,135
tonnes of fresh milk (including commissioned orders) were delivered. The
greatest share of the decline was attributable to fewer commissioned drying
orders and the decline in milk permeate. Overall, the Dairy Ingredients
Switzerland business area generated turnover of CHF 118.3 million (-10.0%
compared to the previous year). The decline in turnover was due to lower
prices for raw materials, which were passed on to customers, and to lower
amounts of milk.

HOCHDORF Baltic Milk UAB (Lithuania) processed more milk (40.8 million kg;
+54.6%) than at any other time in its history. Overall HOCHDORF Baltic Milk
generated gross sales revenue of CHF 15.2 million (-14.4% compared to the
previous year). The lower turnover is mainly attributable to the
appreciation of the franc against the euro, as well as the discontinuation
of the milk-exchange deal. The remainder of the decline is due to lower
milk prices and correspondingly lower product prices.

In the first half of the year, Uckermärker Milch GmbH processed 168.3
million kg of milk, permeate, and cream to make curd, butter, and milk
powder (-7.8% compared to the previous year). It generated gross sales
revenue of CHF 87.9 million (-22.0% compared to the previous year; CHF
112.6 million). The lower turnover was due to currency effects, lower milk
quantities, and, compared to the previous year, considerably lower milk
prices.

Baby Care area
For the first time since 2006, gross sales revenue was unable to be
increased, but instead remained approximately the same. The Baby Care area
generated gross sales revenue of CHF 50.0 million (-5.4% compared to the
previous year; CHF 52.8 million). The somewhat lower turnover is due to the
currency situation and capacity bottlenecks. Quality and product safety are
the most important elements associated with the sale of infant formula.
This was borne in mind in connection with the projects to maximise
capacity. As a result, production has not yet been able to be maximised to
the expected extent.

Plans for renovation work at the dried milk plant of Uckermärker Milch GmbH
are proceeding on schedule. Collaboration with the local authorities went
well. HOCHDORF expects to be able to begin manufacturing infant formula in
Prenzlau in late 2016.

Cereals & Ingredients area
The Cereals & Ingredients Switzerland area generated gross sales revenue of
CHF 8.7 million, which was slightly below the previous year (CHF 9.3
million; -6.4%). This decline is attributable to the current currency
situation. Sold product volume rose in comparison with the previous year.

In terms of sales, the collaboration with the team at Marbacher Ölmühle
GmbH was expanded in the first half of the year. Initial synergies have
been implemented in sales. Other synergies will result from the dissolution
of HOCHDORF Deutschland GmbH in the second half of the year and from the
sale of these products by the sales staff at Marbacher Ölmühle, as well as
from Switzerland.

In the first half of the year, Marbacher Ölmühle GmbH (Germany) generated
gross sales revenue of CHF 3.7 million. Integration work in the HOCHDORF
Group is proceeding well. In terms of sales, the company is pursuing
forward and backward integration. Intermediaries are being eliminated where
possible and sensible.

HOCHDORF South Africa Ltd formed
HOCHDORF South Africa Ltd was formed on 31 May 2015 as a production
company. The company will manufacture chocolate exclusively for the African
market. HOCHDORF expects to gain from this even greater expertise in the
area of developing specific ingredients for the chocolate industry.

Outlook
"Despite the strong franc, we are optimistic about the second half of the
year. We will continue to push ahead with ongoing projects and in so doing
concentrate on those with high potential for added value. The focus of this
will be on forward integration," said Dr Thomas Eisenring, CEO of the
HOCHDORF Group.

HOCHDORF expects somewhat lower milk quantities compared to the previous
year and for this reason will process more whey and buttermilk. As a result
of the abolishment of the quota, the Group expects somewhat higher
quantities of milk for processing at its plants in Lithuania and Germany.

Despite currency effects and the low prices for milk products
internationally, the HOCHDORF Group continues to assume that gross sales
revenue for 2015 will come in at CHF 580 million to CHF 620 million. By
contrast, the Group has raised the EBIT target as a percentage of
production revenue: "Currently, we anticipate EBIT at 3.2-3.8% of
production revenue," said Eisenring.

Key figures for the HOCHDORF Group as at 30 June 2015 (consolidated and
unchecked)



                                             1.1.15 -    1.1.14 -
CHF 1,000                                    30.06.15    30.06.14    Change
Processed milk, whey, and permeate
in million kg                                   421.4       255.9    +64.7%
Quantity produced (including cream)
in tonnes                                     126,995      53,821   +136.0%
Quantity sold, in tonnes                      125,767      50,179   +150.6%
Gross sales revenue                           284,297     220,656    +28.8%
Earnings before interest, taxes,
depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA)         15,503      13,779    +12.5%
as % of production revenue                       5.4%        5.8%
Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT)      10,682      10,187     +4.9%
as % of production revenue                       3.7%        4.3%
Net profit                                      4,117       6,268    -34.3%
as % of production revenue                       1.4%        2.6%

Staffing levels as at 30 June                     581         371    +58.5%
Gross sales revenue per employee                489.3       594.8    -17.7%

                                           30.06.2015  31.12.2014
Balance sheet total                           322,702     331,109     -2.5%
thereof shareholders' equity                  151,699     143,168     +6.0%
as % of the balance sheet total                  47.0        43.2

Share details                              30.06.2015  31.12.2014
Share price (in CHF)                              154         138    +11.6%
Market capitalisation                         178,509     147,787    +20.8%




The full Letter to Shareholders can be found at
http://www.hochdorf.com/en/investors/ -> Financial reporting.

End of ad hoc announcement

+++++
Additional features:

Document: http://n.equitystory.com/c/fncls.ssp?u=DSUHKGEAIP
Document title: Letter to Shareholders 2015

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19.08.2015 News transmitted by EQS Schweiz AG. www.eqs.com - news
archive: http://switzerland.eqs.com/de/News

The issuer is responsible for the contents of the release.

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Information and Explaination of the Issuer to this News:

The HOCHDORF Group, based in Hochdorf, achieved a consolidated gross sales
revenue of CHF 428.7 million in 2014. It is one of the leading foodstuff
companies in Switzerland, employing 573 staff as of 31/12/2014. Made from
natural ingredients such as milk, wheat germ and oil seeds, HOCHDORF
products have been contributing to our health and wellbeing since 1895 -
from babies to senior citizens. Its customers include the food industry and
the wholesale and retail sectors. Its products are sold in around 80
countries. The shares are traded on the SIX Swiss Exchange in Zurich (ISIN
CH0024666528).


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Language:    English
Company:     HOCHDORF Holding AG
             Siedereistrasse 9
             6281 Hochdorf
             Switzerland
Phone:       +41 41 914 65 65
Fax:         +41 41 914 66 66
E-mail:   hochdorf@hochdorf.com
Internet: www.hochdorf.com
ISIN:        CH0024666528
Listed:      Foreign Exchange(s) SIX


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387737 19.08.2015
 

 


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