Tag Archive | "Danone"

Danone and B Lab to cooperate


Danone and B Lab have announced an open source cooperation agreement that aims to accelerate the process for large, publicly listed multinationals to become certified as B Corps.

B Lab is a global non-profit organisation that sets and raises business standards to inspire and guide corporations to act as a force for good in the world, which could involve minimizing negative externalities, maximizing the positive, and utilizing their entrepreneurial acumen for societal benefits.

B Corps (Best-for-the-World Corporations) are corporate entities that attain B Lab’s certification by committing to goals, business models, practices, policies and behaviors that contribute to human, societal and environmental wellbeing, beyond that of financial profit, putting purpose at the heart of their business strategy.

Adopting an open source philosophy will enable lessons learnt to be shared with the wider community. This cooperation agreement, which is the first of its kind for a large multinational company, will include five key elements:

  1. Sharing with B Lab what Danone has learnt from its own sustainability measurement program, “Danone Way”, which was launched in 2001. These learnings will provide tools for big companies in B Lab’s working committee, called Multinationals and Public Markets Advisory Council (MPMAC) ;
  2. With B Lab, the joint selection of ten Danone subsidiaries of various sizes and businesses to go through the current B Lab certification testing, with a view to paving the way to make progress in its business practices and contribute to the review of the B Impact Assessment;
  3. Danone will be a proactive partner in beta-testing the new set of rules designed for multinational companies that are developed as a result of the current testing and work of the MPMAC;
  4. Danone will contribute to B Lab’s legal work in several European jurisdictions to better deploy B Lab certification;
  5. B Lab Europe has invited a representative to be nominated to the B Lab EU Board as soon as practically possible, and when this occurs Lorna Davis, Danone’s Chief manifesto catalyst, will be nominated to B Lab Europe’s Board.

“We see this partnership with B Corp as being totally aligned with our heritage for pioneering new forms of business models that bring dual economic and social benefits,” said Davis. “The work we will do with B Lab will be shared with the wider community and will form part of a collective learning initiative for multinational organizations. It will help pave the way for us and large companies with complex, international businesses to further develop the legal and operational frameworks to create both economic and social value.”

Marcello Palazzi of B Lab Europe said: “We are well aware that the scaling up of our accreditation processes for very large multinational organizations brings with it major practical difficulties and complexities, both legally and operationally. That’s why we believe the results of this first-of-its-kind open source partnership with Danone will be a great help in encouraging more multinational companies set their course for creating both social and economic value.”

Bart Houlahan of B Lab, said: “For the B Corp movement to reach its potential, it must span from family firms to the Fortune 500′.That’s why the leadership of Danone is so important. B Lab is thrilled that Danone will be part of our Multinationals and Public Markets Advisory Council and also begin using the B Impact Assessment to measure and manage the impact of 10 Danone subsidiaries in 2016.”

Posted in IngredientsComments Off on Danone and B Lab to cooperate

Danone doubles baby milk production capacity in Netherlands


nutrition-baby-milk-Danone-nutrilionDanone announced that it is investing €240 million to build a new plant for its Early Life Nutrition business.

With this investment, Danone will capitalize on strong and growing demand for its international early life nutrition brands, including Aptamil and Nutrilon, for both standard and specialized products.

The state-of-the-art facility will be built in Cuijk in the Netherlands, and will start production in late 2017. This new plant is Danone’s largest investment in its European production capabilities, and will double its capacity in the Netherlands. Output will be exported to more than 80 countries worldwide.

Felix Martin Garcia, Executive Vice President of the Danone Nutricia Early Life Nutrition division said: “Building our new production plant in Cuijk is a major step for Danone and Nutricia. It will give us the capacity we need to meet rising demand for our early life nutrition products, and is consistent with our 2020 roadmap calling for strong, profitable and sustainable growth. We are also delighted to be making this investment in the Netherlands, where our Nutricia brand has had a proud heritage stretching back over more than 100 years.”

The Cuijk location was chosen to capitalize on the expert know-how of current staff, and for the site’s proximity to Danone’s Research & Development center in Utrecht, which is the company’s global hub for research dedicated to early life nutrition and advanced medical nutrition.

The new facility incorporates state-of-the-art technologies and will meet Danone’s targets for
sustainability, offering very high energy efficiency and complying with the strictest CO2 emission standards.

 

Posted in Ingredients, NewsComments Off on Danone doubles baby milk production capacity in Netherlands

Danone Expands in Morocco With €550 Million Acquisition


Danone is paying Eur550 million to increase its stake from 29.2% to 67% in Moroccan dairy company Centrale Laitiere. Danone has held its 29.2% shareholding since 2001.

Centrale Laitiere is Morocco’s leading dairy products company with nearly 60% of the market. It has sales of around Eur600 million in a fast-growing market and operates the country’s largest distribution platform with 30 storage hubs serving 70,000 points of sales. The Danone brand is already very well known in Morocco through products including Yawmy, Moufid and Activia, all sold by Centrale Laitiere.

The deal represents a key step in Danone’s development in Morocco. It will allow the French food and beverages group to invest more in a market with major potential, and thus support growth of the local dairy industry. The move also confirms the strategic appeal of markets in North Africa for Danone.

 

This acquisition is subject to the approval of relevant authorities and is expected to be finalized by the end of 2012. With a majority interest, Danone will fully integrate Centrale Laitiere into its consolidated accounts, and the transaction will be accretive for Danone net earnings per share from the first year.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone Expands in Morocco With €550 Million Acquisition

Nestle to Acquire Pfizer Infant Nutrition Business


Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer is reported to be close to selling its $1.9 billion annual turnover infant nutrition business to Nestle for between $9 billion and $10 billion. With roughly 80% of its sales generated in high growth emerging markets and 60% in Asia, Pfizer’s infant nutrition business is an attractive acquisition target for the other major players within the infant formula industry. Asia accounts for about 45% of the world milk formula market and the region also accounts for over half of the births in the world.

Nestle is believed to have beaten rivals Danone and Mead Johnson to the prize.

 

Posted in NewsComments Off on Nestle to Acquire Pfizer Infant Nutrition Business

Danone Joins the Development of 100% Bio-sourced PEF Bottles


Danone Research and Avantium have entered into a joint development agreement for the development of PEF bottles for Danone, the world’s second biggest bottled water business. The agreement forms another cornerstone of Avantium’s commercialisation strategy to further co-develop the YXY technology for producing PEF bottles. The agreement with Danone marks the second major partnership for Avantium’s YXY technology to produce PEF bottles.

“The agreement with Danone Research is a fantastic step forward on our path to commercialize PEF bottles,” says Avantium’s chief executive Tom van Aken. “Danone Research is at the forefront in contributing to the development of next generation bio-based plastic bottle. Our YXY solution for the packaging industry creates a new bio-sourced material delivering superior functional properties versus conventional PET technology (for example light weighting potential, barrier and thermal properties). We believe that the process economics and carbon footprint of PEF make it a suitable PET alternative. A recent study done by the Copernic Institute, showed that PEF has a 50-60% lower carbon footprint than oil-based PET. Finalizing the LCA study is part of the Joint Development Agreement. Avantium is currently validating the use of existing supply and recycling chains, enabling a full transition to bio-based PEF bottles in three to five years from now.”

Based on the YXY technology, the Avantium and Danone Research joint objective is to contribute to the emergence of a new renewable material generation which will not be in direct competition with food. YXY is used as a fast and efficient chemical-catalytic technology to convert carbohydrates produced from plants, grains, energy crops, lignocellulosic matter, waste streams, waste paper or agricultural residues, into a wide variety of bio-based polymers. Based on ongoing R&D programs, Avantium will also continue to develop PEF from renewable feedstock not competing with food.

Avantium has recently opened its pilot plant in Geleen, the Netherlands, with the capacity of producing 40 tons of PEF for application development. The collaborations with Danone and The Coca-Cola Company are key to secure a smooth transition into the mass production phase of PEF bottles. Avantium is in active discussion with other leading brand owners to develop PEF bottles, fibers and film. In the longer term Avantium will license its YXY technology to enable large scale, world-wide production and use of its bio-sourced plastic materials.

Posted in PackagingComments Off on Danone Joins the Development of 100% Bio-sourced PEF Bottles

Emerging Markets Drive Danone


Strong growth in emerging markets helped Danone to increase like-for-like sales by 7.8% to Eur19.32 billion and improve its trading operating margin by 20 bps to 14.72% in 2011. The organic sales growth reflects a 3.0% increase in sales volume and a 4.8% increase due to price/mix effect. Trading operating income rose 9.2% on a like-for-like basis to Eur2.84 billion.

However, emerging economies for the first time accounted for over half of Danone’s sales and generated most of the group’s growth in sales and in trading operating income.

“The year 2011 was both tough and positive. Tough because of the increasingly gloomy macro-economic environment in urope, plus a steep rise in commodity prices that put pressure on our costs and entire organisation. But also positive because we came through successfully,” says Franck Riboud, chairman of Danone. “Our results made 2011 a successful year, as we once again met all our targets. Organic growth in sales stood at 7.8%, both full year and in the fourth quarter. We met our target for margin expansion. And our free cash flow continued to increase sharply, gaining over 9%.

Danone succeeded in continuing to grow its sales volumes throughout the year, reflecting ongoing efforts to develop its product categories, but also the competitive management of selling prices, particularly in Europe. Despite a 2% drop in volume in Europe, Danone grew like-for-like sales by 2.4% to Eur10.81 billion.

Danone’s biggest division, fresh dairy increased like-for-like sales by 4.6% to Eur11.24 billion on volume down 0.1%. The waters division registered the strongest sales growth – up 15.7% to Eur3.23 billion. Baby nutrition also achieved double-digit sales growth – up 10.7% to Eur3.67 billion. Medical nutrition sales at Eur1.18 billion rose by 9.4%.

Franck Riboud continues: “Looking ahead, we anticipate no improvement in the economic environment or in consumer spending in 2012, and our priorities for the year remain the same: leveraging our growth drivers, investing in our categories and brands, and managing inflation and volatile costs while maintaining our competitive edge.”

Posted in NewsComments Off on Emerging Markets Drive Danone

Attractive But Unbalanced Outlook For Global Dairy Market


The global dairy market will offer strong growth prospects in the coming five years, but the uneven spread of this market expansion and an era of elevated pricing will create as many challenges as opportunities for key players along the dairy supply chain. This is one of the key conclusions coming from the Rabobank Food & Agribusiness Research and Advisory report, ‘Global Dairy Outlook: Show me the money’.

Rabobank forecasts that the global dairy market will expand at 2.4% pa over the next five years but that growth will be unevenly spread, generating some important market dynamics.

Growth will be highly skewed to emerging markets, with countries like China, India and South East Asia expected to account for more than 80% of market volume growth, while western markets continue to mature. Supplying these growth markets, many of which are already in supply deficit, with safe and affordable milk in coming years will require considerable advancement on many fronts: including the development of safe domestic supply chains in emerging markets and the expansion and marketing of surplus production in export regions. “Tapping into emerging market growth will present a particular challenge for many of the world’s dairy processors, most of which are domiciled in, and still focused on, the EU and US markets,” points out Tim Hunt, global dairy strategist for Rabobank.

Opportunities will also be uneven across product categories. In particular, economic, demographic and dietary trends are likely to see cheese sales underperform the broader dairy market. With sales of higher end whey product set to track a much faster growth path, the strategic value of whey pools is rising rapidly. “The divergence of cheese growth and whey demand represents a major structural shift in the market, and justifies a re-evaluation of ingredient production and sourcing strategies,” he explains.

Rabobank forecasts that solid market growth, supply constraints and a structural shift in the costs of producing milk will sustain high milk and dairy commodity prices over the medium term. But this will not translate to increased profits for all.

The processing sector is confronting enormous challenges from high and volatile input costs, difficult economic conditions and retail power. In general the processing sector has managed to maintain or improve their margins, through a combination of stripping costs, trading to higher value-added products and passing through cost increases to consumers. But experience has varied greatly by sector, with Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) players like Nestle and Danone faring well, cheese makers also improving their returns, while liquid milk players and major Chinese processors have seen their returns decline.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Attractive But Unbalanced Outlook For Global Dairy Market

Danone to Invest €6 Million to Expand French Water Site


Danone is to invest Eur6.2 million to expand capacity at its bottled water production plant at Salvetat in France. Part of the expenditure will be used to drill for new water sources, with Eur1 million a year allocated for this purpose.

 

Danone also plans to construct a new 5,000 sq m warehouse to store 3 million bottles of water produced by the site each week. Danone had already committed investment of Eur3 million last year to extend the capacity of the packaging line at Salvetat and to carry out other improvements to the operation.

 

The factory employs about thirty people and volume sales of the Salvetat brand of sparkling mineral water have risen by 28% this year. The brand currently holds15.5% of the French carbonated water market, up from 7.9% last year.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone to Invest €6 Million to Expand French Water Site

Danone Enters Indian Infant Nutrition Market With €250 Million Deal


Danone is entering the baby nutrition and medical nutrition markets in India. The French food and beverage group has agreed to acquire Wockhardt Group’s nutrition business and brands as well as its related industrial operations from Carol Info Service, located in Punjab, India, for Eur250 million.

 

The strong brand awareness of Wockhardt’s Dexolac, Farex and Nusobee baby nutrition products and their credibility with healthcare professionals will accelerate Danone’s entry into the country’s baby nutrition market. With over 25 million children born each year,Indiais the fastest-growing infant nutrition market in the world.

 

In addition, the nutritional supplement brand Protinex will give Danone a strong foundation for developing its medical nutrition business. The acquisition will provide Danone access to a distribution network with nationwide reach.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone Enters Indian Infant Nutrition Market With €250 Million Deal

Danone’s €250 Million Indian Acquisition


Danone is acquiring Wockhardt Group’s nutrition business for Eur250m to enter the baby nutrition and medical nutrition markets in India. Danone is purchasing Wockhardt’s nutrition business and brands as well as its related industrial operations from Carol Info Service, based inPunjab, India.

 

The strong brand awareness of Wockhardt’s Dexolac, Farex and Nusobee baby nutrition products and their credibility with healthcare professionals will accelerate Danone’s entry into the country’s baby nutrition market. With over 25 million children born each year, India is the fastest-growing infant nutrition market in the world.

 

In addition, the nutritional supplement brand Protinex will give Danone a strong foundation for developing its medical nutrition business. The acquisition will provide Danone access to a distribution network with nationwide reach.

Posted in News, UncategorizedComments Off on Danone’s €250 Million Indian Acquisition

Strong First Half Sales Growth at Danone


Reflecting solid performances across all its business categories and geographical regions, Danone increased consolidated sales by16.3% to Eur9.73b in the first half of 2011 and trading operating income by 6.9% on a like-for-like basis to Eur1.39b. Danone has confirmed its full year targets for 2011.

 

Excluding the impact of changes in exchange rates and the integration of Unimilk, Danone’s majority owned fresh dairy product businesses in Russia and other CIS member countries, organic sales growth was 8.7% – a 4.0% increase in sales volume and a 4.7% growth in value.

 

Danone’s trading operating margin (EBIT) stood at 14.35% in the first half, down 23 bp like for like from the same period of 2010, but in line with group targets. The decrease mainly reflects the basis for comparison of Unimilk’s margin for the first half, prior to the very steep increase in milk prices in summer 2010. Excluding Unimilk, trading operating margin decreased only by 8 bp, due entirely to the catastrophe inJapanin March 2011 and its impact on Danone’s Fresh Dairy Products operations. Excluding these developments, trading operating margin held steady in the first half of 2011, even in face of the sharp increase in raw material prices, notably milk and PET.

 

Franck Riboud, chairman and chief executive of Danone.

The rise in raw material prices was offset by cost reduction initiatives that generated savings of Eur246m over the six-month period, as well as competitive price increases applied in the first half of the year in the Fresh Dairy Products, Waters and Baby Nutrition divisions.

 

“Danone has once again met its targets in a persistently difficult environment shaped by trends in consumption and rising raw material prices. Sales show remarkable growth in the first half, with our Waters division doing particularly well,” comments Franck Riboud, chairman and chief executive of Danone. “We have also met our margin targets, countering steep rises in raw material costs with major efforts to raise productivity and fine-tune pricing. Finally, Danone-Unimilk is on track to achieve its targets and its priorities.”

 

Danone has reaffirmed its targets announced at the beginning of the year. These include a 6% to 8% increase in sales on a like-for-like basis, and an increase of around 0.20% in trading operating margin, like for like, which will be fueled by all group activities, but especially by Unimilk and synergies from integration. Danone is also projecting·an increase in free cash flow in keeping with the Eur2b target set for 2012.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Strong First Half Sales Growth at Danone

Lactalis Makes €3.4 Billion Move on Parmalat


French dairy group Lactalis, which already owns 29% of Parmalat, has made a Eur3.38b offer for the remaining shares in the Italian food group. The move is sure to raise opposition in Italian political circles where Parmalat is viewed as a national asset and is the country’s biggest listed food company.

Lactalis is the world’s largest cheese producer and the third largest dairy group behind Nestle and Danone. Privately owned by the Besnier family, Parmalat had a turnover of Eur9.4b in 2010, with 60% generated outside of France where the group has a presence in over 140 countries. It already owns Galbani, Italy’s leading cheese producer, but had a recent Eur1.4b bid for French yoghurt group Yoplait rejected..

Parmalat’s revenue last year was about Eur4.3b and it is present in 16 countries. Its chief brands are Parmalat for UHT milk and dairy products and Santai fruit beverages.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Lactalis Makes €3.4 Billion Move on Parmalat

Astarta and Danone Form Joint Venture in Ukraine


Astarta, the biggest producer of sugar and industrial milk in Ukraine, has entered a joint venture for the production and processing of milk with Danone, the world leader in dairy products, waters and baby nutrition.

Astarta’s high level of vertical integration in industrial cattle farming, own forage supply, as well as accumulated experience of industrial livestock business, will provide for a substantial increase of volumes and cost efficiency of milk production and further upgrading of its quality in the coming years. Operating a plant at Kherson along with eight regional offices, Danone is one of the largest producers of dairy products in Ukraine. Danone’s international experience will enable Astarta to take its dairy business to a new level of efficiency as it plans to double it milk production during the next five years.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Astarta and Danone Form Joint Venture in Ukraine

Strong 2010 Performance by Danone Gives Confidence for 2011


With all of its divisions and regions posting gains, global food and beverages group Danone achieved a 14.2% rise in underlying net income to Eur1.67b on sales ahead by 13.5% to Eur17.01b for 2010. Excluding the impact of changes in exchange rates (+6.0%) and acquisitions, total sales were up 6.9%. This organic growth reflects a 7.6% rise in sales volume and a 0.7% decrease due to price mix.

Fresh dairy sales were up 6.5% to Eur9.73b with volume growth of 7.5%. The water business increased volume by 7.8% and sales by 5.3% to Eur2.87b. Baby nutrition sales rose 8.9% to Eur3.36b and volume growth was 7.6%. Danone’s medical nutrition division was the fastest growing with sales up 9.0% to 1.06b and volume growth was 8.7%.

Danone’s trading operating income rose 7.1% to Eur2.58b and the trading operating margin (EBIT) improved by 3 bps to 15.2% in 2010, despite the steep rise in raw material prices, particularly milk. The increase in raw materials was primarily offset by various cost-cutting measures that generated record savings of over Eur500m during the year.

Danone completed a number of major transactions in 2010. In October, Danone sold its 18.4% stake in Wimm Bill Dann Foods, Russia’s leading food and beverage company, for $470m. In November, Danone agreed to acquire YoCream, the leading producer of frozen yogurt in the US, for around $103m.

Also in November, Danone and Unimilk finalised the merger of their fresh dairy product businesses in Russia and other CIS countries, creating the region’s market leader in fresh dairy products. Indeed, Russia is now Danone’s largest single national market, with France.

Outlook

Danone expects the trends which were evident in 2010 to continue in the months ahead. Consumer spending in both the industrialised world and emerging economies shows no sign of either significant improvement or worsening, However, raw material prices remain on a volatile upward path.

Franck Riboud, chairman and chief executive of Danone.

The French group expects total raw material and packaging costs to increase by 6% to 9% on average over the year, with a steeper increase in the first half reflecting the comparison with figures recorded in 2010. Danone plans to manage these increases through consistently high productivity and will also continue to use pricing to maintain a competitive edge.

Another priority for 2011 will be the integration of Unimilk’s operations in Russia and CIS countries, with sales and cost synergies set to boost Unimilk’s operating margin from the second half on.

Danone’s targets for 2011 include a 6% to 8% rise in sales on a like-for-like basis and an increase of around 0.20% in trading operating margin, also on a like-for-like basis. This will be fueled by all the group’s activities, but especially by Unimilk and synergies from its integration. As a result, the rise will only take shape in the second half, with first-half trading operating margin down slightly from the same period of 2010. A rise in free cash flow will be in line with the Eur2b target set for 2012.

“The strength of our group, businesses, brands and teams, and our exposure to regions with robust growth prospects mean that we can look to 2011 with confidence,” says Franck Riboud, chairman and chief executive of Danone. “We will aim to outperform our competitors in organic sales growth, margin, and cash generation.”

Posted in NewsComments Off on Strong 2010 Performance by Danone Gives Confidence for 2011

Danone Calls For Changes to EFSA’s Handling of Health Claims


Danone has again called on the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) to amend its evaluation processes and clarify the criteria used for the assessments of scientific evidence relating to the health claims of specific food products. The French dairy group is responding to a recent rejection by EFSA of the link between the consumption of Actimel probiotic yoghurt drink and reduced risk of diarrhoea associated with the presence of Clostridium difficile in hospital environments.

In an opinion published on December 9th, EFSA concludes that the positive elements included in the application filed by Danone in August 2009 are not sufficient to establish a definite relationship of cause and effect between the consumption of Actimel, containing the L. Casei DN114 001, and a reduced risk of diarrhoea associated with the presence in the intestine of Clostridium difficile bacteria for older people undergoing antibiotic treatment in hospital environments.

EFSA’s opinion does not concern current communications for Actimel addressing the public at large and consumers in general, and naturally does not concern the sale of Actimel.

Commenting on the opinion, Emmanuel Faber, co-chief operating officer of Danone, states: “Danone contests this opinion, which is in contradiction with the findings of a series of clinical studies, of which the most significant was published in the British Medical Journal, a prestigious scientific review that is internationally known for its strict editorial policies. That contradiction underscores the need, which Danone has pointed to on several occasions, for EFSA to amend evaluation processes and clarify the criteria for assessments of scientific evidence relating to specific products and drawing on the findings of recent clinical studies. These same observations were raised and reiterated by stakeholders attending the recent meeting on health claims related to gut and immune function organised by EFSA on December 2 this year.”

In accordance with the Regulation, Danone will thus be submitting arguments in support of its position to EFSA within 30 days.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone Calls For Changes to EFSA’s Handling of Health Claims

Danone to Invest €50 Million to Expand Irish Baby Food Plant


Danone Baby Nutrition plans to invest Eur50m to significantly expand capacity at its baby food manufacturing plant at Macroom in Ireland. A subsidiary of French food and beverages group Danone, Danone Baby Nutrition manufactures specialised infant and toddler milks.

Construction is due to commence in February 2011 with the new facilities coming on stream at the start of 2012. On completion, the Macroom factory will be the largest and most technologically advanced manufacturing centre in Danone Baby Nutrition’s global network. The expansion will result in a trebling of capacity to 100,000 tonnes annually, due to the establishment of a new drying line at the facility. About 98% of the output from Macroom will be exported to more than 60 countries worldwide.

The investment project is expected to result in the creation of 40 new jobs the areas of food science, engineering and supply chain management to add to Danone Baby Nutrition’s existing Irish workforce of 350 people, employed between its plants at Macroom and Wexford, which produce the Cow and Gate and Aptamil brands.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone to Invest €50 Million to Expand Irish Baby Food Plant

Danone and Unimilk Finalise Merger


Danone and Unimilk have completed the merger of their fresh dairy products businesses in Russia and other CIS member countries. The new entity, controlled by Danone with a 58% equity interest and in which former shareholders of Unimilk own 42%, is the new leader for dairy products in the CIS area. Russia is now Danone’s largest market.

The board of directors of the combined business comprises three members, including the chairman, Andrey Beskhmelnitsky, representing Unimilk, and four members, including Bernard Hours and Pierre-Andre Terisse, representing Danone.

Filip Kegels, previously general manager of Danone Fresh Dairy Products in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, is in charge of operational management.

An integration committee has been set up to coordinate Danone and Unimilk teams during the integration phase and ensure that business targets are met. The new entity will be consolidated in Danone financial statements from December 1st, 2010.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone and Unimilk Finalise Merger

Danone Continues US Dairy Expansion


Danone is acquiring YoCream, the leading producer of frozen yoghurt in the United States, for $103m. The deal will enable Danone to move into frozen yoghurt, a fast growing segment in the US. It will also gain access to an away-from-home distribution network, in addition to its existing channels.

The move reflects Danone’s strategy for expansion of the fresh dairy products market in the US, in particular by extending the times and places where its products are consumed.

YoCream has pioneered the innovation, production and marketing of frozen yoghurt in the US. The company operates a state-of-the-art production facility in Portland, Oregon, to manufacture its ‘true’ frozen yogurt, which contains real yogurt that is fermented and cultured on site daily.

YoCream’s 2010 net sales are estimated at approximately $58m. The acquisition is subject to usual conditions but is expected to be closed by the end of 2010.

Danone enjoys leading positions in healthy food in four businesses – fresh dairy products (number one worldwide), water (number two in the packaged water market), baby nutrition (number two worldwide) and medical nutrition.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone Continues US Dairy Expansion

Danone Completes Russian Dairy Deal


Danone has finalised the sale of its 18.4% stake in Wimm Bill Dann Foods, the Russian dairy and food group for $470m. Danone has held the stake since Wimm Bill Dann Foods’ IPO in 2002.

The closing of the transaction was subject to the grant of the required regulatory approvals for the merger of Danone’s fresh dairy products operations in Russia with those of Unimilk, Russia’s second largest manufacturer of dairy products and baby food. Established in 2002, Unimilk operates 28 production plants in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus and has 14,000 employees. Unimilk’s sales in 2009 amounted to Eur1b (up 7% on 2008).

Wimm-Bill-Dann will fund the purchase of its shares from Danone from existing resources and will not require additional financing. Founded in 1992, Moscow-based Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods has grown rapidly to become the largest producer of dairy, baby food and beverage products in its native Russia and the CIS. The group employs over 16,000 people across 37 manufacturing facilities in Russia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Georgia. In 2005, Wimm-Bill-Dann became the first Russian dairy producer to receive approval from the European Commission to export its products into the European Union.

Since 2002, Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods has been expanding its geographical footprint by acquiring successful businesses in Russia and the CIS, and investing heavily in modernising its production facilities. Its strategy is to produce its core products in the regions where they are sold.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone Completes Russian Dairy Deal

Coca-Cola Retains Position as World’s Most Valuable Brand


Coca-Cola has retained its leadership of Interbrand’s 11th annual ranking of the ‘Best Global Brands’ beating off competition from the likes of IBM, Microsoft and Google. This is the eleventh consecutive year that Coca-Cola has earned the distinction of being the world’s most valuable brand. Coca-Cola was valued by Interbrand at $70.45b, up 2% on the previous year.

A total of 16 food and drink brands featured in the top 100. Ranked 23rd overall with a brand value of $14.6b, a rise of 3%, Pepsi was the second ranked food and beverage product. Nescafe, with brand value down 4% to $12.8b, was the next highest, followed closely by Budweiser, up 4% to $12.3b.

Other food and beverage brands to make Interbrand’s top 100 league table in descending order were: Kellogg’s (+6% to $11.0b), Heinz (+4% to $7.5b), Nestle (+4% to $6.5b), Danone (+7% to $6.4b), Sprite (no change at $5.8b), Jack Daniels (flat at $4.0b), Moet & Chandon (up 7% to $4.0b), Corona (static at $3.8b), Smirnoff (down 2% to $3.6b), Johnnie Walker (no change at $3.6b), Heineken (flat at $3.5b) and Campbell’s (up 5% to 3.2b), which was ranked 99th overall.

Only Nescafe and Smirnoff actually declined in brand value.

Interbrand, the leading brand consultancy, publishes the ranking of the top 100 brands based on a unique methodology analysing the many ways a brand touches and benefits an organisation, from attracting top talent to delivering on customer expectation. Three key aspects contribute to a brand’s value – the financial performance of the branded products or services, the role of brand in the purchase decision process and the strength of the brand to continue to secure earnings for the company.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Coca-Cola Retains Position as World’s Most Valuable Brand

Danone Purchases French Smoothie Maker


Danone has acquired Immedia, the third largest smoothie manufacturer in France, for an undisclosed sum. Immedia generated sales of Eur4m last year.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone Purchases French Smoothie Maker

Danone to Dispose of Stake in Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods


Danone has agreed to sell its 18.4% stake in Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods to the Russian food group for a total consideration of $470m. The agreement follows the recent announcement of the joint-venture between Danone and Unimilk in the CIS region. The deal is conditional upon Danone receiving the necessary regulatory approvals for the merger of its fresh dairy products operations in the CIS region with Unimilk.

Wimm-Bill-Dann will fund the transaction from existing resources and will not require additional financing. “This agreement represents the amicable conclusion of Danone’s investment in our company, an investment Danone has held since our IPO in February 2002. This announcement and the outright purchase of our own shares reflect our confidence in the fundamentals of the business and our strategy for the future,” says Tony Maher, chief executive of Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods.

Tony Maher, chief executive of Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods.

Founded in 1992, Moscow-based Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods has grown rapidly to become the largest producer of dairy, baby food and beverage products in its native Russia and the CIS. The group employs over 16,000 people across 37 manufacturing facilities in Russia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Georgia. In 2005, Wimm-Bill-Dann became the first Russian dairy producer to receive approval from the European Commission to export its products into the European Union.

Since 2002, Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods has been expanding its geographical footprint by acquiring successful businesses in Russia and the CIS, and investing heavily in modernising its production facilities. Its strategy is to produce its core products in the regions where they are sold.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone to Dispose of Stake in Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods

Danone Strengthens Probiotic Business


Danone has signed exclusive 10 years licence agreements with Probi, providing the French food and beverage giant with exclusive rights to use the Swedish probiotic research company’s Lp299 technology in probiotic fruit drinks and fruit juices for gut health outside North America. Danone is also acquiring a 51% stake in the ProViva probiotic digestive health brand from Swedish dairy company Skanemejerier.

ProViva was the world’s first probiotic fruit drink for digestive health and remains the brand leader. Danone’s Activia yogurt is the biggest digestive health yogurt brand in the world.

“Danone is one of the most successful healthy food companies in the world and is better placed than anyone else to replicate the success of ProViva in Sweden in other parts of the world,” says Micheal Oredsson, chief executive of Probi.

Danone’s current interest in developing probiotic fruit drinks and fruit juices follows its recent global joint venture with global fruit producer Chiquita.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone Strengthens Probiotic Business

Danone to Sell Stake in Chinese Juice Business For €200m


Danone has agreed to sell its 22.98% shareholding in China Huiyuan Juice Group, which is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, for about Eur200m to SAIF Partners, a Hong-Kong-based private equity firm. Huiyuan holds a leading position in the fruit juice market in China.

The disposal is in line with Danone’s strategy to focus the activities of its Waters division on natural mineral and spring water based beverages.

Since Danone’s entrance in the Chinese market in the late 1980s, the company has built up successful positions in its four core categories – fresh dairy products, waters, baby nutrition and medical nutrition, which together operate 20 factories and employ 9,000 people in China. With a strong commitment to accelerate its development in the Chinese market, Danone will continue to focus on the growth opportunities of its four core categories in China.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone to Sell Stake in Chinese Juice Business For €200m

Steady Volume and Sales Growth at Danone


French food and beverage giant Danone has reported an 11.2% increase in consolidated sales to Eur8.35b in the first half of 2010 and a 7% rise on a like-for-like basis. The like-for-like sales growth was driven by a 9.8% jump in volume and a 2.8% decline in value. Trading operating income increased by 2% on a like-for-like basis to Eur1.28b.

Danone’s trading operating margin was stable at 15.30% compared to the average margin in 2009. However, compared to the first half of 2009, the margin decreased by 74 bps on a like-for-like basis. The reduction mainly reflects the negative price effect of the Reset program, the effect of rising raw material prices and a difficult comparable basis. The impact of higher raw material prices in the first half of 2010 has been largely offset by Danone’s various cost savings initiatives, which are expected to generate up to Eur500m in the current financial year.

Danone assumes that the financial, economic and social crises will continue to weigh on consumption trends in Europe, while emerging markets are expected to keep developing well overall. Consequently, Danone will continue to focus on, and invest in, growth opportunities in key categories and geographies, on the strength of its competitive positions and on the development of its brands. Productivity gains as well as the growth of free cash flow will continue to be key priorities.

In line with this strategy, Danone recently entered into an agreement to acquire Medical Nutrition USA for approximately $62m in cash. Danone is also to merging its fresh dairy product businesses in the CIS area with those of Russian company Unimilk. The new entity will become the leader for dairy products in the CIS area as a whole, and particularly in Russia.

Outlook

For full year 2010, Danone is targeting like-for-like sales growth of at least 6%; a stable trading operating (EBIT) margin versus 2009 on a like-for-like basis; and an increase of the free cash flow from operations of at least 10% versus 2009 on a reported basis.

Franck Riboud, chairman and chief executive of Danone.

“Our results in the first half of this year confirm our strong start in 2010. We continue to invest in countries, products and brands with a strong potential: baby nutrition in Asia, dairy products in the US, in Brazil as well as in Russia where the Danone-Unimilk alliance provides us with significant long term growth opportunities. In the Waters and Medical Nutrition divisions we continue to identify new growth opportunities in emerging markets as well as new business models. We simultaneously continue to focus on productivity, which is critical in light of the volatile raw material prices,” says Franck Riboud, chairman and chief executive of Danone.

“Lastly, our cash-flow generation keeps increasing steadily.  Investments, productivity and cash flow are essential as they build the performance of today, but also the Danone of tomorrow, more global, more efficient, stronger, at the service of its mission and of value creation.”

Posted in NewsComments Off on Steady Volume and Sales Growth at Danone

Danone and Unimilk to Create Leading Dairy Business in Russia and the CIS


Global food giant Danone is to merge its fresh dairy products business in the CIS area with Unimilk, Russia’s second largest manufacturer of dairy products and baby food. Established in 2002, Unimilk operates 28 production plants in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus and has 14,000 employees. Unimilk’s sales in 2009 amounted to Eur1b (up 7% on 2008).

Spanning operations in Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Belarus, the merger covers all dairy products. It will make Danone-Unimilk the leader for dairy products in the CIS area as a whole, and particularly in Russia, where it will account for around 21% of the total market and hold strong positions in high-value, high growth segments.

The new entity will generate annual sales of approximately Eur1.5 billion and employ over 18,000 people. It will be chaired by Andrey Beskhmelnitsky, current chief executive of Unimilk, while Filip Kegels, current general manager of Danone Fresh Dairy Products in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, will take charge of operational management.

The two businesses are highly complementary: In terms of geographical presence, Danone operates mainly in western Russia, while Unimilk has a higher profile to the east. The product ranges are also complementary with Danone’s strength in the value-added health segment enhancing Unimilk’s strong positions and powerful brands in core markets.

The merger will allow Danone-Unimilk to benefit from significant sales and cost synergies, and to take advantage of strong growth momentum in the region’s dairy products market. Danone will control 57.5% interest in the new entity, while the current shareholders of Unimilk will hold 42.5%.

The transaction will be carried out principally through a contribution of assets, supplemented with a cash purchase of shares by Danone. Danone’s net financial debt will increase by Eur1.3b principally as the result of the value of the put options which will be granted to the current shareholders of Unimilk. These options will allow them to dispose part or all of their shares in the new entity, Danone being able to hold 100% of these shares in 2022. The operation will be accretive to Danone earnings per share starting in 2011.

“Almost 20 years after taking our first steps in Russia, Danone-Unimilk represents a strategic move for Danone in a region which is offering a promise of growth in the years ahead, and where we will be pursuing ambitious goals for the future,” says Franck Riboud, chairman and chief executive of Danone. “It is also an important new step in Danone’s drive to extend business into new geographical markets.”

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals in the countries concerned. Closing is currently expected to take place towards the end of 2010.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Danone and Unimilk to Create Leading Dairy Business in Russia and the CIS




Food & Drink Business Conference & Exhibition 2015

Food & Drink Event Videos

Upcoming Events

  • February 25, 2017Golositalia & Aliment & Equipment
  • February 26, 2017Gulfood
  • March 3, 2017DETROP 2017
  • March 6, 2017Sibab Portugual 2017
AEC v1.0.4

Jobs: Food Packaging

Jobs: New Product Development

Jobs: Finance

Jobs: Project Management

Jobs: Logistics

The Magazine

F&D Business Preferred Suppliers

Advertisements