ROTTERDAM, NETHERLANDS — Supported by increasing commodity prices and strong demand from China, Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC) posted a significant rebound in net income for the first half of the year ended June 30.
Net income was $336 million, up 167% from the same period a year ago. Net sales increased 47% year-over-year to $24 billion. Core earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) increased 23% to $778 million.
“In a persistently volatile environment, with prices overall high for the main products commercialized by the Group and continued concern over supply chain disruptions driving up freight rates and container shortages, LDC’s market understanding and insights, prudent risk management and successful hedging strategies secured solid results for the first half of the year,” said Michael Gelchie, chief executive officer of LDC. “Thanks to the experience and commitment of our teams, we continued to work with business partners around the world to address the challenges posed by today’s complex and changing environment, keeping key supply chains moving safely and efficiently from farmers to end consumers.”
Both of LDC’s business segments contributed to the Group’s solid performance, despite turbulent markets and a challenging operating environment.
The Value Chain Segment’s operating results amounted to $525 million, driven mostly by continued strong performance from Grains & Oilseeds and Freight built on resilient or growing demand in both platforms, and supported by profitable support from the Global Markets Platform, offsetting challenges faced by Juice.
LDC said demand for soy and grain imports from China continued to grow and exports from the United States remained strong.
Crushing activities contributed to the segment’s performance due to strong margins globally, especially in the United States, Canada and China, LDC said.
Ethanol prices were helped by a rally in oil prices and small corn crops, as demand increased to support carbon emissions reductions.
The Merchandizing Segment’s operating results reached $354 million for the period.
While maintaining a prudent approach to risk and liquidity management in an uncertain context, the group continued to invest in the pursuit of its strategic growth plans in the first semester.
“Investments in the first half of 2021 were geared toward maintaining our facilities and pursuing ongoing expansion projects, but also toward new initiatives in the field of food innovation, such as our joint project to build a food industry park in China and additional investments through our corporate venture capital program, LDC Innovations,” Gelchie said. “The completion of our partnership agreement with ADQ in September, combined with the full early repayment of the $1,051 million intragroup loan granted by LDC to its parent company, significantly strengthened our financial credit profile and further reinforced our position to accelerate strategic investments and developments going forward, to meet the evolving needs of customers and consumers globally.”
In addition to delivering strong financial results and progressing with strategic plans, in the first half of 2021 LDC also set new sustainability targets in the lead-up to 2030. These include continued efforts to drive increasingly sustainable practices in individual business lines, as well as a global commitment to measure scope 3 emissions and accelerate decarbonization across the Group, led by its newly formed Carbon Solutions Platform.