Business news from Ukraine


27 November , 2019  

Kernel, a large Ukrainian agricultural holding, saw $59.61 million in net profit in the first quarter of FY2020 (July 2019 – June 2020), which is 24% less than in the first quarter of FY2019 over the IFRS 16 impact.
According to a report of Kernel Holding S.A. (Luxembourg) on Wednesday, revenue reduced 26% year-over-year to $845.84 million, stemming from lower trading volumes.
However, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) added 6% year-over-year to $106.5 million driven by Oilseed Processing segment EBITDA small growth.
In particular, Oilseed Processing segment EBITDA reached $22 million (up 38% year-over-year). Infrastructure and Trading segment generated $35 million EBITDA, 8% decline year-over-year. Unallocated corporate expenses in the reporting period amounted to $9 million, up 40% year-over-year.
The company said that the general outlook for the segment’s performance in FY2020 remains positive. Kernel expects Infrastructure and Trading business to be the largest contributor to group’s EBITDA in FY2020 owing to: commissioning of new grain export terminal scheduled for January 2020; growing grain export volumes; and strong contribution of grain railcars business.
Kernel said that at the date of this report, we completed this year harvesting campaign on 513,000 hectares, reaching record ever net yields for wheat (5.9 tonnes per hectare, up 16% year-over-year) and sunflower (3.5 tonnes per hectare, up 11% year-over-year), while facing normalization of corn yields to 8.6 tonnes per hectare (down 13% year-over-year).
“For the whole FY2020, we expect over $100 million farming EBITDA (net of IAS 41 and IFRS 16 effects), weakened by corn yield decline, lower year-over-year grain prices and growing production costs enhanced by local currency appreciation,” the group said.
Kernel’s gross profit in Q1 FY2020 fell by 9.9%, to $85.85 million, and operating profit – by 0.5%, to $82.09 million.
Net debt as of September 30, 2019 reached $1.144 billion, up 65% from June 30, 2019 level, reflecting short-term borrowings increase to finance working capital needs at the beginning of the season as well as $307 million new lease liabilities added to the balance sheet after implementation of IFRS 16.
Readily marketable inventories (RMI) increased by $275 million over Q1 FY2020, to $568 million, driven by procurement of grain and sunflower seeds.
Consequently, net debt adjusted for RMI increased to $576 million on September 30, 2019 from $400 million on June 30, 2019, with growth solely arising from IFRS 16 introduction. As a result, Kernel leverage as of September 30, 2019 increased to 3.3x Net-debt-to-EBITDA and 3.7x EBITDA-to-interest (post IFRS 16).