Novozymes delivers strong results but struggles with ambitious growth target

Low oil prices have hit the enzyme company’s bioenergy sales

Company fell short of sales target last year, but still made a healthy profit (photo: iStock) Company fell short of sales target last year, but still made a healthy profit (photo: iStock)
January 19th, 2016 12:03 pm| by Philip Tees

Novozymes, the world’s largest producer of industrial enzymes, has today released strong financial results for 2015 that reflect the adverse effects of low oil prices on its bioenergy division.

Its pre-tax profit was 3.621 billion kroner, up 10 percent on 2014, on a turnover of 14 billion kroner, up 12 percent on 2014.

Struggling to reach aggressive sales target
However, the company had previously stated its ambition looking forward to 2020 to achieve 8-10 percent organic growth per year, which it fell short of last year with just 4 percent.

In 2016, the organic growth is expected to reach 3-5 percent and the expectation from 2017 onwards is for 6-7 percent increases.

Peder Holk Nielsen, the CEO of Novozymes, explained that, while the sales growth has taken a hit as a result of the difficult market conditions, profitability is expected to remain high.

“We delivered solid financial results in 2015, despite challenges in growing our sales, particularly in bioenergy,” he said.

“In 2016, we expect to work our way through these challenges and deliver solid organic sales growth for the majority of our business. The focus in 2016 is to get growth back up as soon as possible, while continuing our cautious cost approach. Profitability is expected to remain high, enabling us to secure close to double-digit growth in net profit, and the strength of our balance sheet enables a new 2 billion kroner stock buyback program.”