Business news from Ukraine

ASTARTA AGROHOLDING RECEIVES NET LOSS OF EUR13.32 MLN IN Q1

Astarta agroholding in the first quarter of 2020 received a net loss of EUR13.32 million, which is 2.7 times more than in the same period last year.
According to the company’s report on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, its revenue in the reporting period decreased by 9.8%, to EUR101.34 million due to lower sales in the crop segment, which accounted for 39% of consolidated sales compared to 52% in January-March 2019.
EBITDA increased by 1.7 times, to EUR27.78 million amid an increase in the share mainly in crop and sugar segments. EBITDA margin increased from 14% to 27% in the first quarter of 2020. Gross profit rose by 47.3%, to EUR29.87 million.
Crop production ranked first in the structure of consolidated revenue and amounted to 39%. The segment revenue declined by 33%, to EUR39 million, mainly due to a 17% year-on-year decline in corn sales, to 236,000 tonnes. Most of the grain and oilseed crop in 2019 was sold by the end of the first quarter of 2020. The export share increased to 96% compared with 91% in the corresponding period of 2019.
The sugar segment revenue grew by 46%, to EUR28.76 million (28% of revenue) due to an increase in sugar sales by 44%, to 78,000 tonnes in January-March 2020 and an improvement in sales prices to EUR352/tonne compared to EUR316/tonne in the first quarter of 2019. During the reporting period, Astarta exported 7,000 tonnes of sugar (at the level of January-March 2019), as world prices remained low.
The soybean processing segment generated revenue of EUR22 million, which is 6% lower than the first quarter of 2019 (22% of revenue), mainly due to lower prices for soybean meal and lower oil sales. Export brought 89% of revenue. Soybean oil sales decreased by 21.4%, to 11,000 tonnes, soybean meal remained at the same level as last year, at 47,000 tonnes. At the same time, oil prices increased by 14.1%, to EUR633/tonne, while for oilseed meal decreased by 3%, to EUR321 per tonne.

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ASTARTA LAUNCHES INVESTMENT PROGRAM TO UPDATE AGRICULTURAL MACHINERY

Astarta agricultural holding, the largest sugar producer in Ukraine, has launched the first phase of a five-year investment program to update agricultural machinery and introduce IT instruments for agricultural management of AgriChain company, which is part of the agricultural holding structure.
According to the statement on Astarta’s website, the investments in 2020 were aimed at purchasing 31 tractors (John Deere), 21 grain, row crops and beet seeders (John Deere, Horsch Maestro, Pöttinger Terrasem, Kinze, Monopil, Amity Technology).
In addition, as part of the investment program, two self-propelled sprayers (John Deere), four cultivators (Amity Technology), three seed harrows of Ukrainian production and ten sets of vacuum systems for the conversion of row seeders were purchased.
New John Deere tractors with a capacity of 345 hp equipped with accurate navigation and telemetry systems that will integrate with AgriChain Farm and AgriChain Scout modules.
“The data obtained in real time will provide an opportunity to receive information, form informed decisions and create accurate daily tasks to increase technological field operations,” Astarta reported.
The agricultural holding said that in a few weeks Astarta will begin the spring sowing campaign, preparations for which are ongoing. In particular, winter wheat fertilizing is being completed and soil is being prepared for sowing spring crops.
The company’s crop rotation in 2020 will not change, since traditionally the main spring crops are sugar beets (35,000 hectares), corn (65,000 hectares), soybean (28,000 hectares) and sunflower (41,000 hectares).
Astarta is a vertically integrated agro-industrial holding operating in eight regions of Ukraine. It consists of eight sugar factories, agricultural enterprises with a land bank of 243,000 hectares and dairy farms with 25,000 animals, seven elevators, a biogas complex and a soybean processing plant in Poltava region (Globino Processing Plant LLC).
After three years of profitable work in 2018, Astarta received a net loss of EUR 21.11 million. Its revenue decreased by 18.8%, to EUR 372.22 million, and EBITDA fell by 52.4%, to EUR 56.87 million in 2018.
The AgriChain Farm module is designed to operate and communicate across all production services. It combines all the stages and processes of the production chain: from planning to execution and reflection. The AgriChain Scout information system is currently at the final stages of testing. It combined monitoring of the state of crops, agrochemical field certificates, meteorological data, plant vegetation status (NDVI), systematic monitoring of crops and assessment of its condition, etc.
Other modules are under development and are simultaneously being tested as pilot projects at Astarta’s subsidiary agricultural companies.

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GERMANY’S DEG TO FINANCE UKRAINIAN ASTARTA

Germany’s Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH (DEG) has approved $20 million financing to Astarta agricultural holding.
“The project will help the company to secure long-term working capital financing and capital expenditure program,” the company said in a report on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE).
According to a posting on DEG’s website, the financing is long-term one, but no other details are presented.
The German corporation said that some funds will be sent to buy newest equipment and modernization of production technology to cut natural resource consumption.
DEG is a subsidiary of Germany’s KfW development bank.
Astarta is a vertically integrated agribusiness holding operating in eight regions of Ukraine. The holding includes eight sugar factories, agricultural enterprises with a land bank of 243,000 hectares and dairy farms, a biogas plant and a soybean processing complex in Poltava region.

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GERMANY’S DEG APPROVES $20 MLN FINANCING TO ASTARTA

Germany’s Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH (DEG) has approved $20 million financing to Astarta agricultural holding.
“The project will help the company to secure long-term working capital financing and capital expenditure program,” the company said in a report on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE).
According to a posting on DEG’s website, the financing is long-term one, but no other details are presented.
The German corporation said that some funds will be sent to buy newest equipment and modernization of production technology to cut natural resource consumption.
DEG is a subsidiary of Germany’s KfW development bank.
Astarta is a vertically integrated agribusiness holding operating in eight regions of Ukraine. The holding includes eight sugar factories, agricultural enterprises with a land bank of 243,000 hectares and dairy farms, a biogas plant and a soybean processing complex in Poltava region.

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ASTARTA CUTS NET PROFIT BY ALMOST 71%

The net profit of Astarta agricultural holding, the largest sugar producer in Ukraine, in January-September 2019 totaled EUR 4.3 million, which is almost 71% less than a year ago.
According to a company reported on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE), its consolidated revenue grew by 31.6%, to EUR 333.6 million mainly driven by strong sales of agricultural produce. Export sales were up contributing 58% of the company’s revenues. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) fell by 33.1%, to EUR 45.5 million, EBITDA margin from 27% to 14%. Gross profit fell by 34.4%, to EUR 57.1 million.
Revenues of the sugar segment stood at EUR 86.8 million (down by 10% year-over-year) on lower sales volumes and flat prices. Export sales share was 6% (16,000 tonnes).
The agricultural segment contributed 47% to the total revenues, or EUR 155 million, on 2.6-fold growth of corn sales volumes. Grain exports sales totaled 85% of segment revenue.
The soybean processing segment generated EUR 61.5 million of revenues (up by 15% year-over-year) on stronger sales volumes of key products. Some 89% sales were export sales.
Astarta said that the dairy revenues increased by 17% year-over-year to EUR 24.9 million as a result of better pricing environment. All revenue were received in Ukraine.
“Capex was reduced to maintenance levels across the segments apart from finalizing the EUR 61 million five-year investment project of completing 550,000 silo storage facilities in 2019,” the company said.
Astarta is a vertically integrated agribusiness holding operating in eight regions of Ukraine. The holding includes eight sugar factories, agricultural enterprises with a land bank of 243,000 hectares and dairy farms, a biogas plant and a soybean processing complex in Poltava region.

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ASTARTA INVESTS $19.2 MLN IN GRAIN ELEVATOR IN POLTAVA REGION

Astarta agricultural holding in July 2019 started accepting grain at Semenivsky elevator (Poltava region) with a capacity of 120,000 tonnes and investments of $19.2 million, the press service of the holding has said. According to the report, this elevator is the largest one in Astarta’s structure. It is designed to accept grain from the agricultural holding’s farms and from partners.
The construction of the elevator lasted nine months, it can ship over 54 wagons of grain per day. According to the company, Astarta has seven grain elevators in Poltava, Vinnytsia and Khmelnytsky regions with a total capacity of 550,000 tonnes of grain. As reported, in March 2019 Astarta bought an elevator in Khmelnytsky region for EUR4.6 million.
Astarta after three years of profitable work in 2018 received a net loss of EUR21.11 million. Its revenue decreased by 18.8%, to EUR372.22 million, EBITDA by 2.1 times, to EUR56.87 million.

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