Tate & Lyle reports ‘solid performance’
The UK-based company said it was helped by volume growth in sweetener volumes and high sugar prices, consolidating a good performance for the full financial year.
However, net debt would be higher than the previous year after the decision to keep US corn silos full in response to the anticipated tight supply running up to the next harvest.
After a strong first half, income from co-products had reverted to more normal levels ahead of an announcement of full year results on 31 May 2012.
The sweetener and starch producer benefited from industrial starch margins in Europe, despite market conditions “having started to soften” against a backdrop of a challenging macro-economic environment.
In its bulk ingredients business it added sweetener volumes have remained strong with isoglucose margins improving in Europe during the second half on the back of higher sugar prices.
In speciality food ingredients profits were “weighted towards the first half as a result of Splenda sucralose volume growth reverting to more normal levels and the costs associated with restarting our McIntosh facility.”
The US-based sucralose sweetener facility re-opened two months ahead of schedule and recently met its first customer orders.
Tate & Lyle operate more than 30 facilities worldwide and reported sales totalling £2.7bn in the year to 31 March 2011.
Analysts told Reuters the update contained few surprises and Graham Jones at brokers Panmure Gordon reiterated his forecast for a 20% rise in pretax profits to £315m (€376) for the year to end-March 2012.