DSM earnings up despite tough omega-3 market

Q3 EBITDA increased 27 percent; fish oil-based omega-3 sales are being impacted by lower consumer demand following sharp retail price increases.

  • DSM records 27 percent higher Q3 EBITDA compared to Q3 2012 (€342 million versus €270 million)
  • Life Sciences EBITDA up 23 percent from Q3 2012
  • Materials Sciences EBITDA up 27 percent from Q3 2012 
  • Q3 cash flow from operating activities €310 million, higher than Q3 2012
  • Core Earnings per Share Q3 2013 up 28 percent from Q3 2012
  • Outlook full year 2013 unchanged

On Nov. 5, Royal DSM, the Life Sciences and Materials Sciences company, reported a third quarter EBITDA of €342 million compared to €270 million in Q3 2012. This improvement of 27 percent was realized despite an ongoing challenging macro-economic environment. 

Commenting on the results, Feike Sijbesma, CEO and chairman of the DSM managing board, said: “I am pleased to report increased profitability in all our business clusters despite the initial impact from adverse currency movements and a continued challenging macro-economic environment. Nutrition continued its good performance notwithstanding some headwinds that emerged toward the end of Q3. Materials Sciences also delivered solid performance with higher profits.

“Our focus remains on the full integration of acquisitions and delivery of synergies, which together with continued success in our wide-ranging Profit Improvement Program will help improve DSM’s returns. Current trading conditions are similar to those experienced at the end of Q3, while foreign exchange rates deteriorated. Nevertheless, we are firmly on track to deliver a significant increase in EBITDA for the full year. The 2013 outlook given at our Capital Markets Day remains unchanged.”

The challenging macro-economic environment experienced during the first three quarters of 2013 continues, with little or no growth in Europe. Asia continues to show good levels of economic activity, though at more modest levels, while the US maintains a modest rate of recovery. 

Nutrition is expected to show clearly higher results than in 2012 due to organic growth moving towards the target of 2 percent above GDP and the acquisitions made, with EBITDA margins well within the 20 to 23 percent range. However, the recovery in animal protein markets remains fragile, currently leading to some pricing pressure especially in vitamin E. Additionally, fish oil-based omega-3 sales are being impacted by somewhat lower consumer demand following recent sharp retail price increases. Overall, the compelling growth drivers of the Nutrition business remain unchanged.

Business conditions in Pharma remain challenging, but DSM is confident that it will be able to deliver substantially better results, notwithstanding the usual uneven delivery patterns between quarters.

Performance Materials is expected to show improved results in 2013, despite the negative effects of caprolactam.

Polymer Intermediates is expected to show lower results than in 2012.

For the Innovation Center the result of the second half of 2013 is expected to be in line with the second half of 2012.

Overall, DSM expects a significant increase in EBITDA during 2013 from the €1.1 billion realized in 2012. This is a result of stronger organic growth, supported by DSM’s Profit Improvement Program, as the benefits of acquisitions and a more resilient portfolio are having an increased impact. Foreign exchange rates and the recently announced Dutch ‘crisis tax’ renewal are likely to have a negative impact on EBITDA. Overall, based on current economic assumptions, DSM continues to expect to move towards its 2013 EBITDA target of €1.4 billion. The combination of the above factors could however result in an EBITDA for 2013 slightly below €1.35 billion.

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