CEO Matti Rihko's review Q3/2015
"Raisio's strong performance continued in the third quarter of 2015. Raisio's EBIT of 16 million euros excluding one-off items is the company's best ever quarterly result. At the same time, our EBIT margin excluding one-off items rose for the first time to nearly 12 per cent and return on investment excluding one-off items to 11.5 per cent. Good performance together with moderate investments and efficient management of net working capital generated a strong cash flow and further strengthened the Group's balance sheet.
The Group's EBIT was primarily improved by the Benecol consumer product business acquired in the UK, Ireland and Belgium in November 2014. In the review period, our licensing partners also increased their Benecol products sales, particularly in Asia.
Confectionery business continued its steady performance improvement and launched new interesting products to meet changing consumer needs. The UK's snack bar business also improved its EBIT. Particularly good sales growth was seen in healthy, natural snack bars and nibbles. In October 2015, Raisio entered into a consultation process in the UK with the personnel regarding the future of the Southall site. As alternatives, we are considering a proposal to relocate or outsource the manufacturing, whilst considering a possible site closure. In Finland, sales growth continued in Elovena snack biscuits and instant porridges.
Benemilk continued its strong efforts to internationally commercialise the licensing business and ingredient business created in 2015. However, at this point it is clear that the first licensing agreement will not be signed during 2015. We will probably have to wait at least until the summer 2016. According to the best current estimate, the first agreements in the ingredient business can be expected during this year.
In September, Raisioaqua together with its partners launched Benella Rainbow Trout to consumers, a product from Finnish fish farmers. Benella Rainbow Trout is fed on Raisioaqua's unique feed innovation that helps reduce the strain on water systems and protect the world's wild fish stocks. Healthy Benella has been granted the Finnish Heart Association's Heart Symbol."