Increasing volume among growth strategies at ADM

by Eric Schroeder
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BOCA RATON, FLA. — Executives at Archer Daniels Midland Co. on Feb. 16 said the company plans to grow its business through a combination of increasing its overall volume, expanding its geographic footprint, diversifying its inputs and growing its product portfolio.

Speaking at the Consumer Analyst Group of New York conference in Boca Raton, Patricia Woertz, chairman, chief executive officer and president of ADM, said growth strategies for each of the company’s four business units seek to leverage ADM’s current geographic footprint and to expand to capitalize on future market opportunities.

Ms. Woertz noted ADM has a leadership position in oilseeds processing in North America and Western Europe, and a smaller processing position in South America, where the company is a leading originator of soybeans.

“Our strategy is to grow in South America, Central and Eastern Europe and in India,” she said. “We will also grow in China with our strategic partner in the region. We are the world’s largest corn processor, with primarily U.S.-based operations. We will increase the diversity of our product portfolio, and over the longer term, develop a global processing business using a variety of carbohydrate sources.”

As a leader in the origination and transportation of grains and oilseeds, ADM’s strategy is to “extend our origination footprint as we have in Canada and Eastern Europe, and to grow our destination opportunities in the Middle East, Asia and Africa,” Ms. Woertz said.

Steve Mills, executive vice president and chief financial officer, provided insight into how ADM has taken steps to fulfill its growth strategies, including consolidating operations into more efficient processing facilities, expanding North and South American oilseed crushing capacities, expanding South American fertilizer blending capabilities, and acquiring processing plants in Germany and the Czech Republic.

In its corn processing business, he said the company has expanded ethanol production capacity by adding a dry corn mill, ethanol capacity at a wet corn mill, and a joint-venture sugarcane ethanol facility in Brazil. The company also has built two cogeneration plants that will reduce energy costs.

Beyond its basic business strategies, Ms. Woertz also said ADM is focused on four corporate priorities: safety, performance, cost management and sustainability.

“We are making important progress in each area,” she said.

Progress that has been achieved includes significantly improved reportable injury rates, improved process safety incident rates, and the completion of the company’s first global water analysis.

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