Swiss meat processor Bell Group reported higher earnings despite flat sales thanks to margin expansion due to growth in value-added products.

The company said that operating profit increased to CHF196m (US$206.9m) in the 12 months, up from CHF189.5m in 2013. Growth was supported by improved gross margins, which rose from 32.1% of sales to 33%. Bell attributed the positive trend to “progress made with product ranges with higher added value”.

The improved operating result and a “substantial reduction” in finance costs lifted net profit by 14.5% to CHF87.7m.

Sales, however, came under some pressure declining 0.9% to CHF2.6bn. Overseas operations offset a 0.8% increase in domestic revenue. German sales declined 2.8% and international revenue dropped 8.1%, the company said.

Looking to 2015, Bell sounded a cautious note on the commodities outlook. “Bell expects raw material prices to start rising again in Switzerland and Europe in the second half of 2015,” the group said. It added that the impact of currency exchange following the Swiss National Bank’s move to scrap the euro peg would be “negligible”.

Bell also revealed it will exercise its option to buy another 2% of sandwich-to-pizza maker Hilcona. The move will make Bell the majority shareholder in Hilcona with 51% of outstanding share capital.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.