Glanbias performance nutrition arm enjoyed fastest sales and profit growth of companys divisions

Glanbia's performance nutrition arm enjoyed fastest sales and profit growth of company's divisions

Glanbia today (12 March) reported higher annual profits as continued improvement at the Ireland-based food group's performance nutrition arm offset a challenging year for its domestic dairy business.

The company posted net profit of EUR150.3m (US$208.4m) for the year to 4 January, up 3.7%. The higher earnings came on the back of a 23.2% jump in EBITA from Glanbia's performance nutrition division, which manufactures products for the sports nutrition market. Glanbia cited an "improved revenue mix" and lower input costs.

EBITA from Glanbia's global ingredients business was up 4% thanks to "positive performances" from US cheese and the company's "customised solutions" unit.

However, EBITA from the group's Irish consumer dairy division dropped 29.1% as private-label hit the company's brands, which include Avonmore milk and Kilmeaden cheese.

All three divisions generated higher sales, with the performance nutrition business enjoying the highest growth.

MD Siobhán Talbot said Glanbia expected 2014 "to be another positive year for the group". The company forecast an 8-10% rise in adjusted earnings per share on a constant-currency basis, compared to 2013, when earnings by that metric were up 11.9%.

Talbot added: "Our ambition is to continue to deliver a similar annual organic growth rate through to 2018."

Shares in Glanbia were up 2.79% at EUR11.25 at 11:15 GMT.

Click here for the full statement from Glanbia.