Moscow, Russia — June 08, 2004 — Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods OJSC [NYSE: WBD] today announced its financial results for the three months ended March 31, 2004.
During the first three months of 2004, Wimm-Bill-Dann’s sales increased 24.3% year-on-year to US$278.3 million from US$223.9 million in the first quarter of 2003. Gross margin declined to 26.0% in the first quarter of 2004 from 29.3% during the same period last year. Adjusted EBITDA increased 19.9% compared to the same period in the prior year while net income fell 25.4% year-on-year.
Commenting on today’s announcement, Sergei Plastinin, CEO of Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods OJSC, said: “The first quarter showed that our regional expansion strategy has already started to contribute to increasing sales, giving us a solid foundation for sustainable organic growth in the next two to three years. At the same time, in order to gain a significant share of regional markets for our new premium segment yogurts and dairy desserts, we are currently selling these products at introductory prices, making them more attractive both to the supply chain and to the final consumer in the regions. We are also promoting our new products through extensive marketing and advertising in the regions, aimed at raising consumer awareness and generating loyalty. Further, following an extensive modernization program both in dairy and juice, our depreciation is relatively high as is the current cost of raw milk. All of these factors are putting strong pressures on our operating margins. This is why our profitability dynamics will be lagging behind those of sales in 2004.”
Key Operating and Financial Indicators of 3m 2004
|Sales volumes, thousand tons
|Selling and distribution expenses
|General and administrative expenses
|Financial income and expenses, net
|CAPEX including acquisitions
* Note: See Attachment A for definitions of Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA margin and reconciliations to net income.
Sales in the Dairy Segment increased 32.4% from US$159.0 million in the first three months of 2003 to US$210.5 million in the first three months of 2004, while the average selling price increased by 19.4% year-on-year from US$0.62 per 1 kg in the first quarter of 2003 to US$0.74 per 1 kg in the first quarter of 2004, driven by ruble appreciation, a change in product mix favoring higher priced products and ruble price increase. Gross margin in the Dairy Segment decreased from 26.7% in the first three months of 2003 to 23.5% in the first three months of 2004. This was attributable to the substantially increased price of raw milk and depreciation of the newly installed production lines per 1 kg of dairy product.
Sales in Wimm-Bill-Dann’s Juice Segment increased 3.5% from US$64.9 million in the first three months of 2003 to US$67.2 million in the first three months of 2004. The average selling price increased 18.2% year-on-year from US$0.55 per liter in the first three months of 2003 to US$0.65 per liter in the first three months of 2004 primarily due to ruble appreciation, ruble price increase and the change in product mix in favor of higher priced brands. At the same time, increased depreciation caused by the installation of the new PET line and the full modernization of Ramensky Plant, rising personnel expenses resulted in gross margin reduction from 36.0% in the first quarter of 2003 to 33.9% in the first quarter of 2004.
Selling and distribution expenses increased in the first three months of 2004 by 27.0% due to an increase in transportation, a substantial growth in advertising and marketing expenses in the regions and personnel costs as a consequence of rising sales volumes. General and administrative expenses grew by 22.0% as a result of the increase in personnel expenses and repeal of a privilege in paying property tax in Wimm-Bill-Dann’s Dairy segment due to changes in legislation.
Financial income totaled US$1.8 million compared with financial expense of $4.7 million in the first quarter of 2003. This change is attributable to a US$7.5 million foreign currency gain resulting primarily from appreciation of the Russian ruble against the U.S. dollar and Wimm-Bill-Dann’s U.S. dollar net monetary liability position.
Net income fell 25.4% and stood at US$5.3 million due to substantially higher raw milk prices, personnel costs and depreciation of newly installed lines. Adjusted EBITDA in the first three months of 2004 increased 19.9% year-on-year and amounted to US$25.9 million. Adjusted EBITDA margin was 9.3% compared to 9.6% in the first three months of 2003.Wimm-Bill-Dann Foods OJSC announced its financial results for the three months ended
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