German confectioner Halloren believes its best growth prospects lie in the fast growing markets in Thailand and Korea as well as North America amid intense competition in its home market.
The company last week announced a 31% rise in 2013 sales to €118m ($163m) driven by its export business. Its consolidated net profit was also up 8% to €2.23m ($3m).
North America and Asia
"We are confident that the growth engine for the Halloren Chocolate Group will be the export markets of the future," said the CEO Klaus Lellé.
Annika Kleinschmage, marketing at Halloren told ConfectioneryNews: “In future we want to focus on North America and Asia, especially in Thailand and Korea.”
Halloren last year upped its stake in Belgian private label chocolate firm Bouchard to help it increase its international presence.
The company operates three plants in Germany, one in the Netherland and another in Belgium.
"This past year 2013 was for the confectionery industry as difficult as 2012,” said Lellé.
Kleinschmage added: “The challenges in Germany are the intense price competition in the food retail trade as well as price increases in raw material for example cacao, milk powder, butter."
Investment and outlook
Halloren plans to invest €5m ($7m) in production and packaging at its Delitzsch plant in Germany to improve productivity.
The company said it expected to grow sales in 2014 despite volatile commodity markets and forecast net profit at least on par with 2013.