January 13, 2022

Chr. Hansen delivers 9% organic growth in Q1


Chr. Hansen reported an "encouraging start to the year with organic growth of 9%," the company's chief executive officer, Mauricio Graber, revealed.

"...progress across all business areas and strategic initiatives underlines the strength of our 2025 strategy, differentiating us as a bioscience company focused on microbial and fermentation technology platforms," Graber said

Chr. Hansen's food cultures and enzymes segment continued its strong momentum in the first quarter, while health and nutrition delivered a strong rebound following a Q4 that fell short of expectations. EBIT b.s.i. developed favorably at 7% growth, despite the impact from inflation and a general increase in activities as the company reconnected with customers.

The EBIT margin b.s.i. was down compared to last year due to the full inclusion of HMO activities.

"We maintain our outlook for the full year," Graber added.

For Q1 2021/22, Chr. Hansen's revenue amounted to €268 million (US$307.2 million), up 10% from €243 million (US$279 million) in Q1 2020/21.

The organic growth of its food cultures and enzymes segment was 7% driven by volume. Health and nutrition's organic growth was 13% driven by volume.

EBIT b.s.i. amounted to €65 million (US$75 million), up 7% from €61 million (US$70 million) in Q1 2020/21. The increase was driven by the food cultures and enzymes segment, while EBIT b.s.i. in health and nutrition was at the Q1 2020/21 level due to a negative impact from Jennewein (HMO), which was only partly reflected in Q1 2020/21 (acquisition was closed on October 9, 2020).

EBIT margin b.s.i. was 24.4%, down from 25.2% in Q1 2020/21. Production efficiencies and scalability effects from the solid sales performance were offset by higher input costs not yet reflected in the sales prices, a general ramp- up of activities including travel and the full inclusion of HMO.

The implementation of price adjustments to reflect the current inflationary pressure is progressing as planned in close collaboration with Chr. Hansen's customers and is expected to have an effect from Q2 onwards.

Free cash flow before acquisitions and special items (b.a.s.i.) amounted to €55 million (US$63 million), up €62 million (US$71 million) from Q1 2020/21. The increase was due to both an improved cash flow from operating activities and lower operational investing activities.

Chr. Hansen's outlook for 2021/22 remains unchanged from an original guidance provided on October 14, 2021:

    - Organic growth is expected in the range of 5-8%;

    - EBIT margin before special items is expected to be 27-28%;

    - Free cash flow before special items is expected to be around €140-170 million (US$161-195 million).

- Chr. Hansen