Tag Archive | "Switzerland"

Nestle Strengthens Nespresso With €250 Million Investment in Switzerland


Nestle is strengthening its premium portioned coffee brand Nespresso by investing SFr300 million (Eur250 million) to meet growing consumer demand worldwide. The company is to build a new factory in Romont in the Swiss canton of Fribourg to increase coffee capsule production.

Nespresso’s third production site will boost employment in the region, creating 400 new direct jobs in the long term. It is the latest multi-million Swiss Franc investment that Nestle has made in Nespresso in the last three years. SFr300 million was invested to build Nespresso’s second production and distribution centre in Avenches,Switzerland, in 2009.

“Some 25 years after creating the portioned coffee segment, the third Nespresso production centre will provide the capacity needed to sustain growth in Europe and develop our brand globally,” says Patrice Bula, executive vice president for Nestle, responsible for the Strategic Business Units, Marketing, Sales and Nespresso.

Construction of the factory is due to begin before the end of the year. It will be operational by 2015. The factory will be one of three Nespresso production sites in Switzerland. In addition to Avenches, Nestle opened its first Nespresso production centre in Orbe.

Nespresso has continued to grow since it was launched by Nestle over a quarter of a century ago. Last year, Nespresso achieved sales of more than SFr3 billion and growth of about 20%. Strengthening its capabilities in emerging and developed markets, it has recently opened boutiques in Dohain the state of Qatar, Seoul in South Korea and Innsbruck in Austria. There will be over 300 Nespresso boutiques worldwide by the end of 2012.

As part of Nestle’s continued effort to construct more environmentally friendly buildings worldwide, the new factory in Romont will use renewable energy produced by its coffee roasting technology to heat the building.

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International Operations Drive Sales Growth at Emmi


Swiss dairy group Emmi increased net sales by 1.4% in 2011 to SFr2.72 billion (Eur2.25 billion) thanks to the encouraging performance of its latest acquisitions, to significant international growth and to newly launched products in Switzerland. The net profit margin for 2011 will be around 3%.

However, in organic terms (adjusted for the effects of acquisitions and currencies) net sales at group level fell by 1.9%. This figure is just short of expectations and is attributable to the adverse economic environment. Emmi has decided to stabilise earnings by not aiming for short-term growth.

Net sales in Switzerland declined by 2.1% to SFr1.91 billion primarily due to the abandonment of unprofitable logistics services for third parties and lower volumes in trading business. In international markets, Emmi achieved a 10.9% increase in sales to SFr811.4 million. This increase is at the upper end of Emmi’s expectations and can be attributed to the outstanding performance of its latest acquisitions (Onken, Cypress Grove Chevre and A-27), growth at Emmi Roth USA and improved sales of Emmi Caffe Latte. Growth was restrained by losses resulting from the strength of the Swiss franc, especially in exports of Swiss cheese. In local currencies and adjusted for acquisitions, growth of 3.2% was achieved.

“Given the extremely challenging environment, the result is an impressive one. I am particularly pleased by the outstanding performance of our most recent acquisitions. Our carefully considered acquisition strategy is paying dividends,” comments Urs Riedener, chief executive of Emmi.

Emmi expects raw milk prices to remain at their present level in the first half of 2012, while prices for other raw materials (coffee, fruit and cereals) and packaging costs are likely to remain stable or increase only slightly. Import pressure will persist in Switzerland. Demand in the retail trade is expected to be volatile.

Emmi expects consumer sentiment in the US and Germany- its most important markets outside Switzerland- to remain stable and to be subdued inItaly. In view of the economic situation and the value of the Swiss franc standing at 1.20 against the euro, Emmi’s success in 2012 will largely be driven by its strong brands and by products produced locally abroad, as well as by further cost savings.

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Orior Acquires Swiss Tofu Producer


Swiss food group Orior, through its Fredag subsidiary, has acquired Bernatur, the leading tofu producer in Switzerland, for an undisclosed price. Bernatur employs approximately ten people and has a production site in Mels (Canton St Gallen). Fredag already produces a wide variety of vegetarian meat substitute products and Bernatur will complement its portfolio.

Orior specialises in the production and distribution of fresh convenience foods, including vegetarian delicatessen products and refined meats. With its Rapelli, Ticinella, Spiess, Le Patron, Pastinella and Natur Gourmet brands, Orior occupies significant positions in several fast growing niches in the Swiss retail and food service markets, as well as in selected sales channels in neighbouring countries. Orior achieved revenues of SFr506m (Eur395m) in 2010 and employs about 1,300 people.

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Emmi Exceed Sales and Earnings Targets


Acquisitions, encouraging international growth and strict cost management have helped Emmi, the Swiss dairy group, to increase net profit by 14.3% to SFr86.1m (Eur67m) on net sales ahead by 2.5% to SFr2.68b in its 2010 financial year. EBIT grew by 24.5% to SFr135.8m and the EBIT margin improved from 4.2% to 5.1%.

“We have proven that we have a robust position in our domestic and key international markets,” comments Urs Riedener, chief executive of Emmi. “The growth in profit is an important basis to enable investment in an Emmi that is successful over the long term.”

Net sales in Switzerland rose by 0.4% to SFr1.95b. Factors such as the strong performance of brand concepts including Emmi Caffe Latte, Kaltbach and Luzerner, as well as the acquisitions of Fromalp and Nutrifrais, had a positive impact.

Emmi achieved an 8.4% increase in sales in international markets to SFr731.8m. The encouraging performance of Emmi Roth USA, growing exports of cheese and Emmi Caffe Latte, the collaboration with Venchiaredo and the expansion of the Trentinalatte brand in Italy as well as the acquisition of Fromalp made a significant contribution to this figure.

Emmi expects consumer sentiment in Switzerland as well as in the US and Germany – its two most important international markets – to remain stable in 2011.

Emmi is projecting group-wide sales growth of between 3% and 5% in 2011. In Switzerland, it expects an increase of 0% to 3%, and on international markets, growth of between 10% and 15%. These figures include the impact of acquisitions, with Fromalp and Onken being particularly relevant. Profitability is predicted to remain at a similar level to 2010, with EBIT of between SFr120-140 million and a net profit margin of around 3%.

In 2011, Emmi will continue to invest in further expanding its international business and strengthening its domestic market. Target organic volume growth in its international markets in the medium to long term is likely to remain at 6 to 8%, while the net profit margin will probably be in the range of 2.5 to 3.5%.

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Swiss Chocolate Manufacturers Return to Growth


The Swiss chocolate industry returned to growth last year following a decline in 2009. Over the course of 2010, Switzerland’s 18 chocolate manufacturers increased volume sales by 1.3% to 176,424 tonnes while turnover across the industry rose 2.4% to SFr1.74b (Eur1.35b). The higher increase in sales turnover was partly due to the price adjustments necessitated by sharp increases in the cost of raw materials. Of total production, 60.4 % was sold abroad compared to 60.7 % in 2009.

Generally positive consumer confidence in Switzerland had a favourable impact on demand in 2010. Domestic sales for Swiss manufacturers rose 2.1% to 69,829 tonnes and value sales advanced 3.3% to SFr898m. The share of imported chocolates consumed on the home market dipped for the first time in nine years, amounting to 33.2 %, against 33.6 % in 2009. Domestic chocolate consumption totaled 93,975 tonnes, including imports but excluding cocoa and chocolate powder, giving an average of 12.0kg per capita, up 300g on 2009.

Despite the continuing strength of the Swiss franc, export sales grew by 0.8% to 106,595 tonnes. The rise in value was a little higher at 1.5% to reach SFr845m. The largest growth sectors were chocolate mini-formats (15.0 %) and solid chocolate bars with no added ingredients (12.8 %).

Germany, with a share of 15.8 %, is the largest of the 150 export markets served by the Swiss chocolate industry. The UK (13.2 %) is second, ahead of France (9.0 %) and Canada (7.3 %). Sales in the EU area as a whole were up by 6.2% in volume and by 2.7% in value in 2010. The main reason was the rising demand in Germany, where export volumes rose 23.6 %, generating an increase in sales value of 16.8 %. There was also significant sales growth as regards deliveries to Italy (up 25.5 % in volume and 18.7 % in value). Meanwhile, outside the EU, the Swiss chocolate industry was able to notch up impressive sales increases in Brazil, Israel, Canada and Saudi Arabia.

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Kraft Foods Looks to Reduce Tax Bill With Cadbury Move


Kraft Foods plans to move part of its recently acquired Cadbury business to its European headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland in order to reduce its corporation tax exposure. Since 2006 Kraft Foods has been implementing a European model involving a (holding) company based in Zurich together with local companies in country markets.

Cadbury, which was acquired for $18.4b earlier this year, is now being integrated into this model. This involves the transfer of certain roles to Switzerland, though the majority of UK-based roles will remain in Britain.

Corporation tax on Kraft’s Zurich-based business starts at 15% compared to the much higher rate of 28% in the UK. Foreign holding companies based in Zurich can be exempt from tax on non-Swiss earnings and can also apply for ‘mixed company tax privilege’ to gain lower rates.

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Emmi Completes Extension of Cheese Ageing Cave


Swiss dairy company Emmi has completed the extension of its cheese-ageing cave in Kalthbach in response to growing demand for Kaltbach cheese specialities in Switzerland and abroad. Over the last two years the facility has been extended by 1,300 metres. Some 1,800 tonnes of Kaltbach cheese were sold in 2009 with 38% on the home market and the balance exported. Demand for Kaltbach specialities has risen continuously in recent years, primarily in the US, the Netherlands, Germany and the UK, but also in Asia, South Africa and Russia.

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Kraft Foods Opens $14 Million Sugar Confectionery R&D Centre in Europe


Kraft Foods has opened a European Gum and Candy Research & Development Centre at Eysins in Switzerland. The $14m state-of-the-art facility will focus on innovation and new product development for many of Kraft Foods’ confectionery brands, including the world’s leading gum brand Trident and the world’s leading candy brand Halls, as well as other brands like Bassetts, Carambar, The Natural Confectionery Co, Trebor and V6.

Worth $23 billion annually, the global gum market has grown by almost a quarter since 2005, and is one of the fastest-growing categories within confectionery. Kraft Foods has a number of gum brands with leading positions in markets across Europe, such as Hollywood in France, Trident in Spain, Greece and Portugal, and Stimorol in Denmark and Switzerland.

The new centre will be home to a team of product and package developers and quality experts who are responsible for breakthrough gum and candy innovation, such as the new Fresh & Clean gum product which is currently launching in markets across Europe. As the European Centre for innovation and technology for gum and candy, the team based in Eysins will collaborate closely with the Kraft Foods Global Gum & Candy Centre of Excellence, based in New Jersey in the US, to drive innovation and new technologies that support the company’s European gum and candy business and global category growth platforms.

The Center in Eysins joins 14 other Kraft Foods R&D Centres supporting the company’s global businesses including beverages, biscuits, cheese, chocolate, coffee and gum and candy.

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Emmi Strengthens Domestic Swiss Business


Swiss dairy company Emmi has joined forces with MIBA, a group of milk producers in north-western Switzerland, to invest SFr2m to purchase and reopen the former Regio Milch beider Basel plant in Frenkendorf, which was closed in June 2010. Beginning in the spring of 2011, Emmi will produce a line of dairy products in Frenkendorf using local milk. The products will be sold by local retailers, in particular Coop. The acquisition enables Emmi to strengthen its domestic business in Switzerland, particularly in the north-west.

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Solid First Half Performance By Emmi


Helped by rising international sales, Swiss dairy group Emmi has increased net profit by 21.5% to SFr39.9m (Eur31m) on sales down by 0.5% to SFr1.27b for the first half of 2010. The profit margin was 3.1 % and Emmi anticipates stable sales for the second half of the year, with the margin remaining at around 3 %.

Net sales in the Swiss market fell by 2.8 % to SFr932.2m. The fall was lower than expected and was primarily due to reductions in the price for raw milk. However, sales volumes in the Swiss market remained at around the same level as the prior year.

Emmi achieved a 6.5 % increase in sales in its international business to SFr343.0m. At constant currencies, the international markets actually posted growth of 9.4 %, while volume growth was 7.2 %. The cheese business in the US developed positively and Roth Kase USA, acquired by Emmi in 2009, performed well.

Emmi’s strategy is based on three pillars – a strong domestic market, international growth and rigorous cost management. The acquisition of the Californian cheese specialist Cypress Grove Chevre, announced on 20th August, and the total acquisition of CASP (Contract Aseptic & Specialty Packaging) in New York, further strengthens Emmi’s position in its largest foreign market. Investments made in the first half of the year, such as the takeover of Fromalp in Zollikofen on 1st July, and the acquisition of a minority stake in the Italian fresh cheese specialist Venchiaredo, will also have an impact in the months ahead.

Looking forward, Emmi anticipates stable sales in the Swiss market and the international business to see sales increase by 8-10 % including acquisitions, or 6-8 % from organic growth.

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Carlsberg to Close Swiss Brewery


Global brewer Carlsberg will concentrate its beer production in Switzerland at its main brewery at Rheinfelden and its site in Fribourg will close down by June 2011. The move is part of the ongoing optimisation of the production network across the Carlsberg Group.

Volume is being transferred from Switzerland to the brewery in Obernai in France, which became part of the Carlsberg Group following the acquisition of Brasseries Kronenbourg in 2008. During recent years, Feldschlosschen, Carlsberg’s Swiss business, has been producing below its capacity. With volume moving to France, overcapacity will become even more significant. Consequently, Feldschlosschen has decided to close the brewery in Fribourg and concentrate production in Rheinfelden.

All 75 affected employees in Fribourg will either be offered alternative employment within Feldschlosschen or will retire. The micro brewery Valaisanne in Sion, which has 10 employees, will be unaffected.

Feldschlosschen will now begin discussion with the City of Fribourg about the future use of the brewery site in central Fribourg.

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European Organic Food Market Continues to Grow


EU-27 demand for organic products continues to grow. The European organic consumer market is the biggest in the world, and was worth about $26b in 2008. The largest markets are in descending order Germany, France, the UK and Italy as they represent 72% of European organic sales. The highest market share and sales per person of organic food products are in Denmark, Austria and Switzerland.

In the EU, around 4% of the agriculture land is under organic production methods. Reasons triggering the demand for organic food in the EU are the series of food scandals, as well as the increasing interest in health, environment issues, and animal welfare.

Despite the current economic situation, the demand for organic products in the EU continues to grow as organics have gone mainstream. The most important driver is considered to be the predominance of large supermarket chains, which has resulted in a greater availability of organic products. Not only have supermarkets embraced organic products, increasingly they have placed organic products on the shelves next to non-organic products. As a result they have become available for a larger audience. Specialty stores of organic products still play an important role as they are also becoming more professional and offer a wider assortment than regular supermarkets.

Consumers of organic products in Europe can roughly be divided in two groups – regular buyers and light buyers. Regular buyers represent a rather small group that has been buying organic products for decades. This group includes environmentalists, lovers of nature, and socially conscious people. Although this group is small, they are responsible for almost half of European organic sales. Regular buyers tend to buy at organic specialty shops or farmers’ markets. For them price is not an important purchasing decision factor.

The second and much bigger group is quite different. Double-Income-No-kids households, older consumers (aged 50-75) and New-Trends seekers will fall in this group. They buy organic products for various reasons, including healthy lifestyle, food safety concerns, animal welfare, sustainability, quality and taste of food, price, innovative packaging. This light buyers group purchase organic products mainly at hyper/supermarkets. This is the group that the organic industry should focus on to generate further growth in the near future.

At the retail level, the distribution of organic products is different in each Member State. In the UK and Nordic countries for instance most organic food sales are generated in supermarkets. In the Netherlands the market for supermarkets and organic specialty shops is more evenly divided. In neighbouring Germany, discounters and supermarkets dominate the distribution market for organic food, predominantly under their private labels. In Spain and Italy most organic sales are generated in organic specialty shops.

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Hero Disposes of French Fruit Dessert Business


Swiss and international consumer food group Hero is selling its French fruit dessert business to Charles Faraud, which is majority owned by CIC-Banque de Vizille. The transaction will be completed at the beginning of September. Charles Faraud is a specialist in fruit desserts and is especially strong in the food service channel in France. Acquiring Hero’s French compote business will provide it with better access to the French retail market.

Employing over 4,000 people in more than 30 countries, Hero specialises in infant nutrition and fruit. Its operations are based predominantly in Europe, North America and Middle East & Africa, and the group generated revenue in excess of SFr1.785b (Eur1.28b) in 2009.

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Packaging Relaunch and Repositioning by Emmi


Swiss dairy processor Emmi is repositioning its products under the ‘Emmi’ umbrella brand. Typical Swiss symbols and the silhouette of a mountain peak in red and white are the key elements of the new packaging. For the first time, well-established products from the white (dairy and fresh products) and yellow (cheese) ranges will come under the same brand name. Some 150 well-known Emmi products will gain new, uniform packaging. Products from the yoghurt, desserts, ice cream, natural cheese, fondue, raclette, mozzarella, milk, cream and butter segments will be marketed as part of the ‘Emmi’ range.

The new, uniform packaging is based on the colours red and white. A harmonious mountain range and silhouette-like typical national symbols such as a flag-waver, edelweiss, a cow and a yodeller form the key elements. “As a Swiss company with products made from Swiss milk, we want to communicate this origin in a clear and comprehensible way to consumers. Emmi products are characterized by their outstanding quality. This is now also reflected in their packaging,” explains Robin Barraclough, head of marketing of Emmi Group.

The uniform ‘Swiss-look’ design has all the benefits of an umbrella brand and aims to increase consumer awareness and improve visibility in the chiller cabinet. The redesigned ‘Emmi’ range of products will be available from August 2010 in Switzerland, Germany and Austria.

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Emmi to Use Swiss National Day to Promote New Umbrella Brand


Switzerland celebrates its birthday on August 1st. Together with internationally renowned light artist Gerry Hofstetter, Emmi, the country’s largest dairy group, is giving the Swiss population a special present to mark the occasion. The artist will illuminate well-known buildings in all four corners of the country on 1st August 2010. The light installations play on the new imagery of the Emmi umbrella brand.

Emmi’s entire product range is being repositioned under the ‘Emmi’ umbrella brand. Typical Swiss symbols and the silhouette of a mountain peak in the dominant colours red and white are the key elements of the packaging. Products from the yoghurt, desserts, ice cream, natural cheese, fondue, raclette, mozzarella, milk, cream and butter segments are marketed as part of the Emmi range.

The uniform ‘Swiss-look’ design has all the benefits of an umbrella brand and aims to increase consumer awareness. The redesigned ‘Emmi’ range of products will be available from August 2010 in Switzerland, Germany and Austria.

“The simultaneous illuminations in Lucerne, Graubunden, Ticino and Vaud express the shared identity of the cantons and Emmi’s ties with Switzerland. The typical national symbols that Gerry Hofstetter is using for the illuminations will trigger a real sense of national pride. It’s a thank you to our loyal suppliers and consumers,” explains Robin Barraclough, head of marketing at Emmi Group.

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Aryzta Completes Acquisition of Fresh Start Bakeries


Aryzta, the Switzerland-based speciality bakery group with operations in Europe, North America, South East Asia and Australia, has received all necessary regulatory clearances to complete its $900m acquisition of Fresh Start Bakeries (incorporating Pennant Food and Sweet Life).

Operating 29 specialist production facilities across the US, Canada, Germany, Poland, Sweden, Spain, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand along with joint ventures located in North America, Chile and Guatemala, .Fresh Start Bakeries is a global supplier of speciality bakery products with a leading position in the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) segment. Pennant Foods is a leading provider of speciality bakery products and solutions to the North American QSR, food service and retail in-store-bakery channels. Sweet Life is a leading innovator and manufacturer of sweet baked goods servicing the North American and Asian QSR channel.

Aryzta is also acquiring Great Kitchens, a leading supplier of pizza and appetisers with a focus on the deli segment of the North American retail grocery channel, for $180m. The combined revenue of the Fresh Start Bakeries and Great Kitchens businesses being acquired is $1.03b, with associated EBITDA of $133m.

Owen Killian, chief executive of Aryzta.

The acquisitions double Aryzta’s manufactured volumes with an additional 30 production locations in 9 countries and permit greater access to a broader customer base within the expanding QSR and retail segments. Moreover, they also provide Aryzta with a more balanced exposure to its core markets of North America and Europe, while extending its geographical footprint in rapidly expanding developing markets.

“On 9th June 2008 Aryzta set out objectives to ‘double the earnings base within 5 years’. These acquisitions represent an important milestone for our shareholders on that journey,” says Owen Killian, chief executive of Aryzta.

Created in 2008 by the merger of Dublin-based IAWS Group and Hiestand Holding of Switzerland, Aryzta has a primary listing on the SIX Swiss Stock Exchange and a secondary listing on the Irish Stock Exchange.In Europe Aryzta has a mixture of business to business and consumer brands, including Hiestand, Cuisine de France, Delice de France and Coup de Pates.

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