Bonduelle Details Results, Welcomes Ready Pac to Group

The frozen vegetable segment posted the strongest percentage sales gain for the Bonduelle Group during its 2016-17 first-half business period, rising 6.3% to EUR 318.8 million.

Sales of canned products, which continue to account for the largest volume, slipped by -0.9% to EUR 504.5 million. Fresh processed vegetable turnover was flat at EUR 202.4 million, making for total group sales of almost EUR 1.026 billion – up +1.4%. Net earnings dipped slightly by -0.2% to EUR 36.5 million.

Euro Zone receipts of EUR 632.1 million slipped by -0.9%, while revenues generated in the Non-Euro Zone rose +5.3% to EUR 393.5 million during the July 1 to December 31 half-year. The downturn of the Villeneuve-d'Ascq, France-headquartered company’s canned operating segment in the Europe Zone during the second quarter was attributed to poor summer vegetable harvest yields. Meanwhile, positive frozen sector results in Europe were credited to recovery in the foodservice business.

Strong gains were realized in North America, notably in Canada. Growth resumed in South America following the repositioning of the canned range, while the company reported there were “no real signs of recovery in Russia.”

Looking ahead to the second half, Bonduelle foresees increased revenues in the 2% to 3% range, excluding an expected $800 million in turnover from Ready Pac Foods in the United States. The Irwindale, California-based company, which specializes in supplying fresh-cut vegetables, fruits, salad bowls and snacks to retail and foodservice customers, was recently purchased from private equity firm H.I.G. Capital for $409 million.

"This acquisition shows ambition to further develop as a global leader in our markets and strengthen our positions in the consumer convenience and health segments to meet consumers' needs," said Bonduelle Chairman and CEO Christophe Bonduelle.

Ready Pac Foods logoFounded in 1969, Ready Pac Foods employs approximately 3,500 people who primarily work at four production plants in California, Georgia and New Jersey. It will reportedly be renamed Bonduelle Fresh Americas and operate as the company’s fifth business unit.

"We have seen significant growth over the last several years, and joining forces with Bonduelle validates our current business approach," said Ready Pac CEO Tony Sarsam, who is expected to remain at the helm.