- Consolidated revenues of EUR 73.5 million fall short of level recorded in the first half of last year, in line with expectations
- Consolidated operating profit (EBIT) still positive at EUR 2.1 million
Haselünne, August 11, 2020 – Berentzen-Gruppe Aktiengesellschaft, which is listed on the regulated market (General Standard) of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (ISIN: DE0005201602), today published its Group Half-yearly Financial Report. In the first half of the 2020 financial year, the corporate group generated consolidated revenues of EUR 73.5 million (first half of 2019: EUR 79.2 million). Consolidated earnings before interest and taxes (consolidated EBIT) amounted to EUR 2.1 million in the first six months of the 2020 financial year (first half of 2019: EUR 5.0 million), while consolidated earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (consolidated EBITDA) stood at EUR 6.4 million (first half of 2019: EUR 9.0 million). This was in line with the preliminary business figures published on July 22, 2020.
“Despite the many challenges the coronavirus pandemic has brought to our doorstep, we operated profitably in the first half of 2020, although of course we originally expected to perform much better,” sums up Oliver Schwegmann, member of the Executive Board of Berentzen-Gruppe Aktiengesellschaft. He goes on to say: “However, the massive restrictions on public and private life have affected consumer behaviour, and consequently impacted our business with branded spirits as well as our Non-alcoholic Beverages and Fresh Juice Systems segments – albeit in very different ways.”
Despite losses resulting from the at times almost complete closure of restaurants, the Spirits segment recorded a slight increase in revenues of 0.5% compared with the equivalent period last year. “We have our private label business to thank for this. Here, we benefitted from our unique position in the food retail trade and stepped up our marketing of premium private label products in particular over the last six months,” says Schwegmann. Meanwhile, sales of products marketed under the core brands fell. “The products marketed under the Berentzen and Puschkin brands are primarily enjoyed in social situations and when celebrating in gatherings. Unfortunately, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, only a very limited number of such occasions have been able to take place in the last few months,” explains Schwegmann.
He goes on to say that the Non-alcoholic Beverages segment was heavily impacted by the closure of restaurants, with the franchise business particularly affected. “Sales of our proprietary brands increased slightly, however, primarily thanks to the Mio Mio brand, which is still seeing very dynamic developments. This reinforces our resolve to develop into a national brand manufacturer this segment, too, and reduce our dependence on third parties,” explains Schwegmann. On the whole, the Non-alcoholic Beverages segment recorded a loss in revenues of around 10%.
The Fresh Juice Systems segment was hit most severely by the coronavirus pandemic, says Schwegmann, with revenues falling by around 25%. “This development was mainly due to the at times almost complete standstill in equipment purchases, including our fruit presses, in these challenging times both in the food retail trade and in hotels and restaurants. However, sales of our devices were already starting to pick up again at the end of the first six months of the year,” says Schwegmann.
“Despite the dampening effects we have seen over the course of the year so far, we have emerged comparatively well from the coronavirus pandemic. This is thanks in particular to the countermeasures we took at an early stage with a view to cushioning the effects of the pandemic as far as possible,” explains Schwegmann. These measures included significantly lowering the scope of investment, reducing the amount of work outsourced to external service providers, limiting business travel, cutting back on marketing activities and temporarily reducing working hours in areas of the company that have been severely affected, especially in Sales.
Outlook for the rest of the financial year
“In this context, we expect to close the 2020 financial year profitably and with a positive consolidated operating result,” says Schwegmann. With the publication of the preliminary business figures for the first half of the 2020 financial year on July 22, the Berentzen Group also announced a new forecast for the 2020 financial year. The original forecast was withdrawn by the corporate group in March in light of the coronavirus pandemic. For the 2020 financial year, the Berentzen Group now expects to achieve consolidated revenues in the range of EUR 153.0 million to EUR 160.0 million, a consolidated EBIT between EUR 4.0 million and EUR 6.0 million and a consolidated EBITDA between EUR 13.0 million and EUR 15.0 million.