Dr. Oetker reports EUR 4 billion in sales for the 2022 financial year, an adjusted sales growth of 5.7%. In that time, investments amounted to around EUR 125 million. Around 65% of the total sales are outside of Germany.
Innovative, sustainable and healthier products were among the success factors for Dr. Oetker. In the Pizza category, recipe revisions of the most important sub-brands and product innovations in the La Mia Grande and La Mia Pinsa ranges had a positive impact on sales. The increased consumer demand for vegan alternatives is being met by Pizza Ristorante al Salame Vegano. Dr. Oetker Professional expanded its range with five variants of Pinsa under the range name La PINSA!
The high-protein muesli in various flavors and the high-protein chocolate and chocolate cakes complement the high-protein and low-sugar product range. Plant-based brownies and muffins expand the vegan sub-brand LoVE it! The trend towards natural products is also served by the Weinstein baking powder, introduced in July 2022 and the vegan Streusel-Spaß Bio, the first organic product in the decor range.
All regions saw sales growth, particularly in the European markets and in Africa/Asia/Australia. Following a good 2021, the Western Europe region recorded higher-than-expected sales growth. Nevertheless, volume development was challenging in some countries: in Italy in particular, Dr. Oetker struggled with a declining market for ambient products. There were also negative volume effects due to the price increases in Spain, Portugal and Austria. The company is happy with the sales increase in Eastern Europe, despite negative currency effects and the discontinuation of Dr. Oetker’s key business in Russia. Market growth in Poland contributed to this. Sales in the Americas region were impacted by the challenging business of Wilton in the USA. Nevertheless, the Americas achieved moderate growth, particularly in Canada and Brazil.
“The war in Ukraine has brought great suffering to the people living there, and at the same time turned the world economy upside down. The markets which were already affected by the aftermath of the pandemic, were shaken once again, putting political, economic and social structures to the test in many countries. The fact that our around 17,000 employees generated organic sales growth of 5.7% against the background of sharply rising raw material and energy prices, and the loss of our Russian subsidiary shows the resilience of our international positioning. In order to maintain this competitiveness, we, like other manufacturers, made massive cost savings, but at the same time had to increase our prices, which, however, could not cover the enormous unplanned increases in expenses. We, therefore, launched an internal efficiency program that defines potential savings in all specialist areas and countries, which also streamlines our processes along the entire value chain. All this goes hand in hand with significant investments in innovations, sustainability and digitization, which will maintain our future viability,” explains Dr. Albert Christmann, Chairman of the International Executive Board of Dr. Oetker.
Significant projects completed in the past financial year include the social building at the Dr. Oetker facility in Wittenburg, the development of a new line for innovative products, and initial investments in solar plants at the Wittlich location, the commissioning of a new warehouse at the Leyland location in the UK, and plant and warehouse expansions in Mexico.
In the past financial year, Conditorei Coppenrath & Wiese made investments in training and further education facilities as well as in the construction of a new building for research and development, after investing in the expansion of production and storage capacities in previous years.
The number of employees, reported for the first time on a full-time equivalent basis, remained stable in 2022 at 16,924 compared to the previous year. 7,047 people were employed in Germany and 9,877 people were employed at its international locations.
Current financial year
The two companies, Dr. Oetker and Conditorei Coppenrath & Wiese, expect overall sales to be significantly higher than in the past financial year. The forecast increase in sales results from pricing and selective volume increases through operations such as product innovation and market investments, as well as through the further expansion of distribution.
In addition to current market challenges, sugar prices are expected to rise, because of the poor sugar harvests in 2022 and the energy costs required for sugar production, which are expected to remain at a high level; the same applies to wheat prices. In addition, higher energy and logistics costs are to be expected.
Dr. Oetker and Coppenrath & Wiese are planning a significant increase in investments in innovation, sustainability, and digitization. The two companies are also investing in production lines and the further expansion of warehouse and shipping capacities.
“As in previous years, we expect a very tense economic situation for the current financial year and beyond, largely driven by the consequences of the war in Ukraine. We are meeting this challenge on the one hand with cost-cutting measures, but also with an investment offensive, particularly in the areas of digitization, sustainability, and innovations. There is no question that digital transformation will help us face the future with confidence. At the same time, we are doing everything we can to promote the responsible use of natural resources and are setting a good example ourselves. That’s why we’re systematically driving forward the projects in our Sustainability Charter and not only thinking about environmental protection in a sustainable way, but also in regenerative terms wherever it is already possible today,” concludes Dr. Christmann.
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