CEO's review 2017
“After the review period, at the end of January 2018, Raisio announced to consider the divestment of its cattle and fish feed business as one strategic alternative. Raisio has initiated negotiations on the sale of its feed businesses with several operators. At the same time, Raisio moved from a holding-type structure to a model in which all resources are targeted toward organic growth, the strategic objective of the Healthy Food Division.
The confectionery business divestment in December 2017 was Raisio’s first strategic step towards its focus, namely its core business Healthy Food. Together with the already strong balance sheet, the proceeds from the confectionery deal allow extensive acquisitions. Raisio is a net debt free company with net cash of EUR 105 million at the end of 2017. In addition to the organic growth, Raisio seeks growth through acquisitions that suit its core business.
In 2017, Raisio’s successes were its Elovena and Benecol products with sales growth of some 10 per cent in Finland and fish feed exports to Russia showing an increase of almost 30 per cent. Good sales development was also seen in improved EBIT.
The Group’s EBIT, including the confectionery business, was clearly down from the comparison period. EBIT decline was primarily due to the challenges of the UK confectionery business that continued until the end of 2017. Benecol's EBIT was also significantly down from the comparison period due to higher subcontracting costs of consumer products and the sharp world market price increase of sterols used as raw material in Benecol products, since higher costs could not fully be passed on to end product prices. Raisio has secured the availability and price level of sterols required for its production in the coming years.”