CSM n.v. unveils name change, presents new strategy

by Eric Schroeder
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AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS —CSM n.v. has unveiled a new name and strategy to mark the latest stage of its ongoing transformation into a provider of biobased products, with activities focused in biobased food ingredients and biochemicals.

The company’s new name is Corbion.

“Our new name and logo signify the next phase in the development of our company,” said Gerard Hoetmer, chief executive officer. “We will leverage our proprietary technologies and intimate understanding of customers and consumers to further develop our market positions in biobased products. In short, we create value for our customers through our biobased products, designed by science, powered by nature and delivered through our dedication. This will in turn create value for our shareholders.”

Corbion said it expects to be a leading player in biobased food ingredients by offering high value-added ingredients to food companies, helping them solve food integrity issues such as food safety, microbial spoilage, look and feel, and taste and smell. The company said it plans to be especially strong in the bakery and meat sectors, and organic growth “will be driven by leveraging its leadership positions into adjacent markets, and will be supported by selective M&A.”

In biochemicals, Corbion said it plans to become “a fast-growing, innovative supplier of fermentation-derived, sustainably sourced biochemicals.” The company’s strategy will be to replace fossil-based chemicals in selected markets by offering products with similar or improved functionality, lower cost-in-use, and enhanced environmental credentials. As part of its efforts in biochemicals, Corbion has entered partnerships with BASF and Cargill.

Corbion is targeting average organic sales growth of 6% to 9%, with average organic sales growth for the biobased food ingredients division forecast at 3% to 5% and average organic sales growth for biochemicals forecast at 15% to 20%.

“The biochemicals sales growth is expected to step up toward the end of the period, as lactide sales (mostly related to bioplastics) are expected to increase, and the new biobased molecule platforms start to generate initial revenues,” the company said. Corbion said its EBITDA margin is targeted to exceed 15% by 2016.
Another strategy of the new company is to “significantly” increase investments in long-term innovation, the supply chain and market access.

“In particular, there will be sizable investments in lactic acid capacity expansion in 2014-2015, which will drive further growth of Corbion,” the company said.

Approximately €250 million ($333.9 million) is expected to be returned to shareholders in 2013, following completion of the divestment of the bakery supplies business. Earlier this year, CSM agreed to sell the bakery supplies business to Rhone Capital L.L.C. for approximately $1,361 million. The acquisition includes the European Bakery Supplies and North American Bakery Supplies businesses (excluding Caravan Ingredients) as well as the international bakery supplies activities. Rhone Capital also will acquire the CSM brand name.

The businesses Rhone will acquire had aggregate sales of about $3,317 million in 2012.

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