Press release

Financial Statements Release: Renewed Altia further improved its profitability

Altia’s profitability continued to improve in 2016 in spite of net sales being lower than in the previous year.

The comparable operating result improved to EUR 26.4 (23.6) million, which is 7.4 % (6.2 %) of net sales. The IFRS operating result was EUR 46.3 (25.3) million due to changes in deferred supplementary pension obligations and sales of assets. The Group’s net sales totalled EUR 356.6 million, which is 6.3 % lower than in the previous year (EUR 380.7 million). The decrease in net sales was particularly attributable to lower contract manufacturing volumes, but it was also due to the continued measures to consolidate the product portfolio as well as unfavorable changes in exchange rates. Altia’s statement of financial position has further strengthened.

January–December 2016 in brief

(including comparative figures for the corresponding period in 2015)

· Net sales was EUR 356.6 (380.7) million
· IFRS operating result was EUR 46.3 (25.3) million and 13.0 % (6.6 %) of net sales. Comparable operating result was EUR 26.4 (23.6) million, which is 7.4 % (6.2 %) of net sales
· Result for the period amounted to EUR 34.6 (21.0) million
· Gearing was 2.5 % (12.0 %)
· The equity ratio was 43.8 % (36.6 %)
· Comparable return on capital employed (ROCE) was 9.1% (8.1 %)
· The Board of Directors proposes dividends of EUR 10.4 (10,4) million to be paid for the financial year 2016

CEO Pekka Tennilä’s comments:

”The past year marked the end of Altia’s strategy period that began in autumn 2014 and had the objective of improving Altia’s profitability and financial position. Our relative profitability doubled during the strategy period, which we can be very pleased with. In 2016, our comparable operating profit margin increased to 7.4 per cent of net sales. This is the highest number achieved during Altia’s current structure. Our comparable operating profit grew to EUR 26.4 million, which further strengthens our statement of financial position and enables investments in business development as well as a good level of dividend distribution to the owner for the second consecutive year.

Our business developed favorably in our strategic focus areas, both in our own core brands as well as in our key partner brands. At the same time, our total net sales declined, as expected, due to factors including the lower volume of industrial contract services and planned changes to our wine portfolio. We continued to focus on value creation and were able to improve absolute profitability year-on-year across all of our own product categories.

We continued to make strong investments in product development. In the Aquavit category, we successfully launched a new lower-alcohol product in the form of O.P. Anderson Petronella. The Koskenkorva Vodka brand renewal, launched in late spring, was successful and opened up new export opportunities. In the glogg category, we carried out a renewal of the Blossa product family, including the launch of non-alcoholic product varieties, and we successfully increased our absolute sales as well as our market share in the category.

Focusing on core businesses played a central role throughout the recently concluded strategy period. In 2016, we sold the Koskenkorva feed processing business to A-rehu and restructured energy production and distribution at the Rajamäki plant.

As an important element of Altia’s strategy, we continued our determined efforts to enhance the efficiency of our cost structure and achieved EUR 20 million in cost savings during the strategy period. At the same time, we launched investment projects to develop operational efficiency, quality and flexibility as well as to support growth opportunities.

As part of our updated strategy, we crystallized Altia’s mission, Let’s Drink Better. We want to build and co-create a new, positive and responsible drinking culture. Altia’s strategy is focused on profitable growth. We will strengthen our Nordic core brands, grow our wine business and expand to new sales channels. We will pursue a long-term improvement in the results of our operations through the continuous renewal of our offering and operating methods.”

Attachment: Full Financial Statements Release and the Tables. Material can be found also at Altia Group website: https://www.altiagroup.com/about-us/reports-and-publications 

Further information: Pekka Tennilä, CEO. Contacts via Altia Group Communications, +358 40 767 0867/Petra Gräsbeck or +358 400 728 957/Niina Ala-Luopa

More information and contact:
Group Communications
Niina Ala-Luopa
Communications Manager

Twitter: @nvieno

Group Communications
Petra Gräsbeck
Director, Corporate Relations and Communications

Twitter: @petragrasbeck