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Refresco Improves Operating Performance

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Refresco Improves Operating Performance

Refresco Improves Operating Performance
August 26
13:39 2013

Refresco, a leading European bottler of soft drinks and fruit juices for retailers and A-brands, has reported a net loss of Eur3.2 million for the first half of 2013 compared to a net loss of Eur10.4 million in the first half of 2012. This improvement was due to the higher operating profit and lower finance expense.

Revenue in the first half of the year decreased by Eur16.9 million or 2.2% to Eur764.7 million compared to the first half of 2012 of which 1.8% was the result of a decrease in average selling prices due to mix effects and 0.4% was caused by a volume decrease.

A weak economic climate in Southern Europe, mainly Iberia, is reflected in a substantial volume loss due to the tough local market conditions and competition in Iberia. The full year effect of Refresco’s commercial decision in late 2011 to focus on higher margin volumes and to let go of the low margin volumes is taking its effect as well.

The operating profit for the first half of the year was Eur21.9 million compared to Eur15.3 million in the first half of 2012. Adjusted EBITDA for the first half of 2013 was Eur65.2 million compared to adjusted EBITDA of Eur55.4 million in the first half of 2012. The improvement was mainly attributable to the higher gross margin realized during the first half of the year.

Of course, Refresco is about to be merged with Gerber Emig. Founded in 2000, Refresco now has production locations in nine countries across Europe. Revenue amounted to €1.5 billion in 2012 and the group employs around 3,000 people. The head office is in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

Hans Roelofs, chief executive of Refresco, comments: “Despite continuing volume pressure mainly in Iberia, we were able to improve our operating profit during the second quarter of 2013 in comparison to the same period last year. This was driven by both cost savings as well as improved gross profit margins influenced by recent contract renewals and lower raw material costs. Taking into account the cost developments, current trading and closed contracts we are confident we will outperform the second half of 2012.”

He continues: “This quarter we have also been focused on preparations  for the intended merger with Gerber Emig which we announced on April 16. The combination of our two companies will lead to a leading pan-European bottler of soft drinks and fruit juices for retailers and branded players in Europe. I am excited about creating a platform which will optimize our position and enhance our scale, product offerings, customer services and innovation capabilities. The proposed merger is subject to approval of competition authorities and we expect completion to take place before the end of the third quarter of 2013.”

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