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17.08.2016 – 07:18


EQS-Adhoc: HOCHDORF Holding AG: Higher revenue despite slightly lower turnover

EQS Group-Ad-hoc: HOCHDORF Holding AG / Key word(s): Half Year Results
HOCHDORF Holding AG: Higher revenue despite slightly lower turnover

17.08.2016 / 07:00
Release of an ad hoc announcement pursuant to Art. 53 KR.

HOCHDORF Group press release: Half-year results for 2016

Higher revenue despite slightly lower turnover

Hochdorf, 17 August 2016 -The HOCHDORF Group processed 415.9 million kg of milk,
whey, permeate and cream in the first half of the year (previous year: 421.4
million kg; -1.3%). It generated gross sales revenue of CHF 278.4 million
(previous year: CHF 284.3; -2.1%). The slight decline in these figures was
primarily due to the challenging market environment. Due in part to
efficiency-boosting measures, EBIT rose sharply to CHF 13.1 million (+22.7%).
The turnover and revenue targets for the 2016 business year as a whole have been

Overall, the HOCHDORF Group processed 415.9 million kg of milk, whey, permeate,
and cream, an amount slightly less than for the same period last year (previous
year: 421.4 million kg; -1.3%). In this regard, milk intake in Switzerland was
3.5% higher than the figure for last year - nearly 30% more whey was processed.
In Germany and Lithuania, liquid intake fell slightly on account of the
difficult situation on the milk market.

Higher revenue despite slightly lower turnover
Gross sales revenue came in at CHF 278.4 million and was thus somewhat lower
than the comparable figure for 2015 (CHF 284.3 million). The main reason for
this was the continued fall in milk prices, which also led to lower product
prices in the Dairy Ingredients business area. The HOCHDORF Group as a whole
sold 125,604 tonnes of product (-0.1% compared with the previous year).

In terms of revenue, HOCHDORF achieved a gross margin of 24.1% (previous year:
22.3%). In absolute terms, this meant gross profit of CHF 70.7 million (+10.8%
compared with the previous year). The Group significantly boosted both EBITDA
(CHF 18.4 million) and EBIT (CHF 13.1 million). Net profit amounted to a
gratifying CHF 11.0 million (previous year: CHF 4.1 million). Increases in
efficiency, adjustments to the product portfolio, good utilisation of facilities
and the disappearance of a currency effect that had existed in the previous year
all contributed to the significantly higher revenue figures, which also came in
above expectations.

Dairy Ingredients area
In Switzerland, the quantity of liquids purchased and processed rose by 6.8% to
226.7 million kg compared with the previous year. The Hochdorf and Sulgen plants
took in 189.6 million kg of raw milk (+3.5% compared with the previous year). In
Sulgen, HOCHDORF processed 33.7 million kg of whey, nearly 30% more than in the
previous year. As a result of the high intakes of liquid, the facilities were
running at more or less full capacity. Overall, the Dairy Ingredients
Switzerland business area generated gross sales revenue of CHF 110.4 million
(-6.8% compared with the previous year). The lower turnover was due to lower
commodity prices, which were passed on to customers, and a large increase in

At the HOCHDORF Group's Lithuanian plant, the purchased quantity of liquids fell
significantly, due to the difficult situation on the milk market and political
interventions on the market. The plant processed 29.5 million kg of milk and
permeate, which was 27.8% less than in the record-setting previous year (40.8
million kg). Gross sales revenue accordingly fell from CHF 15.2 million to CHF
9.7 million (-36.1%).

In the first half of the year, Uckermärker Milch GmbH in Germany processed 159.7
million kg of milk, permeate, cream, and buttermilk to make curd, butter,
buttermilk, and milk powder (previous year: 168.3 million kg; -5.1%). The
company also posted somewhat lower gross sales revenue, which came in at CHF
84.2 million (previous year: CHF 87.7 million; -4.0%). Despite the slightly
lower quantity of liquids, the facilities were working at good capacity. With
regard to production, the company invested in cost-saving measures, e.g. in the
automation of butter production. In accordance with the defined product
strategy, the first higher-quality milk powder was also produced.

Baby Care area
In the Baby Care business area, HOCHDORF boosted gross sales revenue by 20.3% to
CHF 60.2 million (previous year: CHF 50.1 million). This growth in turnover
shows the successful maximisation of facility utilisation.

During the first half of the year, the Board of Directors approved investments
of roughly CHF 80 million for expanding manufacturing and filling capacities for
infant formula, as well as for inventory logistics in Sulgen. Planning is
running according to schedule for the new spray tower line and the new tin line.
The new capacities are scheduled to be available starting in the first quarter
of 2018.

Cereals & Ingredients area
The Cereals & Ingredients business area posted gross sales revenue of CHF 10.0
million, which was clearly above the previous year's figure of CHF 8.8 million
(+13.9%). The facilities were running at high capacity as a result of several
large orders. In addition, healthy VIOGERM(R) wheat germ products were able to
be placed in various new products, both nationally and internationally.

Despite the difficult market environment, Marbacher Ölmühle GmbH experienced a
successful start to 2016, and gross sales revenue was able to be held constant
at CHF 3.7 million. This result was made possible, inter alia, by changes in the
internal sales organisation. In addition to the sale of high-quality plant oils,
the sale of by-products has become an ever more important mainstay. The company
manufactures healthy powder for the food industry from the press cake that
accumulates during oil production, which is valuable in terms of nutrition and

Somewhat later than planned, HOCHDORF South Africa Ltd generated its first sales
in May. The sale of chocolate under the "Afrikoa" brand had a satisfactory
launch in South Africa. It was also possible to open the factory store in early

Forward integration project
Implementation of the communicated strategy 2016-2020 is underway. During the
first half of the year, new products were developed that fit the strategy, and
some were launched on the market. But above all, a letter of intent was signed
in early July concerning the potential majority participation by the HOCHDORF
Group in Pharmalys Laboratories SA. The aim is now to negotiate a purchase
agreement and initiate all necessary clarifications and measures that will
enable the HOCHDORF Group to take a successful first step toward closer
proximity to end consumers.

Presuming that a purchase agreement is signed on schedule, the Board of
Directors will convene an extraordinary General Meeting in the fourth quarter of
2016. A conditional capital increase is currently planned for the purpose of
financing the transaction. An increase in the restriction to voting rights from
the current 5% to 15% might also become necessary. HOCHDORF will provide timely
information about the results of the negotiations and next steps.

In terms of the market, the aim in the Dairy Ingredients area is to handle the
continuing difficult situation on the milk market, to further increase
efficiency at the plants and to push forward with projects concerning the
production of products with strong added value. The Baby Care business area is
expediting the development, production, and marketing of base powder for infant
formula and is on the look for new partners in order to fully utilise as quickly
as possible the new production and filling capacities that will become available
in 2018. The Cereals & Ingredients area is pursuing three key issues: expansion
of the plant in Marbach, development and launching of additional products with
strong added value, and a successful appearance at SIAL in October 2016, one of
the world's leading trade fairs for food.

"We are optimistic as to the second half of the year. Because of the
persistently low price of milk with influence on the Dairy Ingredients products,
we slightly lowered the forecasted annual turnover to CHF 540 to 580 million,"
said Thomas Eisenring, CEO of the HOCHDORF Group. He also stated that
modifications were made to the forecast at the start of the year concerning EBIT
as a percentage of production revenue. Based on the good result for the first
half of the year, Eisenring expects that the EBIT percentage will now come in
the range of 3.5-4.0%.

Key figures of the HOCHDORF Group (consolidated and unaudited)

TCHF (unless stated differently)                                      01.01.16 -
30.06.16 01.01.15 - 30.06.15 Change

Processed milk, whey and permeate, in million kg                      415.9
421.4               -1.3%

Quantity produced (including cream), in tons                          130,169
126,995             +2.5%

Quantity sold, in tons                                                125,604
125,767             -0.1%

Gross sales revenue                                                   278,401
284,297             -2.1%

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) 18,447
15,503              +19.0%

as % of production revenue                                            6.3%

Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT)                             13,109
10,682              +22.7%

as % of production revenue                                            4.5%

Net profit                                                            11,039
4,117               +168.1%

as % of production revenue                                            3.8%


Staffing levels as of 30 June                                         614
588                 +4.4%



Balance sheet total                                                   359,664
340,396             +5.7%

thereof equity                                                        197,924
192,788             +2.7%

as % of the balance sheet total                                       55.0


Information concerning shares                                         30.06.2016

Share price (in CHF)                                                  183.80
168.70              +9.0%
You can find the detailed letter to shareholders online

End of ad hoc announcement
Additional features:

Document title: HOCHDORF half-year results 2016

17.08.2016 News transmitted by Tensid EQS AG.

Information and Explanation of the Issuer to this News:

In 2015 the HOCHDORF Group, which is headquartered in Hochdorf, generated a
consolidated gross sales revenue of CHF 551.2 million. It is one of the leading
foodstuff companies in Switzerland, with more than 625 employees as at 31
December 2015. Made from such natural ingredients as milk, wheat germ, and
oilseeds, HOCHDORF products have been contributing to the health and well-being
of the young and old alike since 1895. Our customers include the food industry
and wholesalers and retailers. Our products are sold in more than 90 countries.
HOCHDORF stock is traded on the SIX Swiss Exchange in Zurich (ISIN


Language: English

Company:  HOCHDORF Holding AG

          Siedereistrasse 9

          6281 Hochdorf


Phone:    +41 41 914 65 65

Fax:      +41 41 914 66 66


ISIN:     CH0024666528

Listed:   Foreign Exchange(s) SIX

End of News EQS Group News Service
492961  17.08.2016