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Danisco acquisition provides bright spot for DuPont in 2011

By Caroline Scott-Thomas, 25-Jan-2012

Related topics: Cultures, enzymes, yeast, Health and nutritional ingredients, Suppliers, Food finance, Food finance and prices

DuPont benefited from last year’s acquisition of Danish specialty food ingredient company Danisco in the fourth quarter of 2011, as revenue more than doubled in its nutrition and health business – although the chemical group’s overall profit fell slightly.

The company said that lower demand for solar panels and digital television parts, as well as lower demand from Asia in particular, hit its net profit in the fourth quarter to December 31, down 0.8% from $376m to $373m. Net sales were up 14% in the quarter, to $8.4bn, although volumes fell 10%.

Sales in the nutrition and health segment hit $806m during Q4, with $468m of that from the acquisition of Danisco, the company said.

DuPont chair and CEO Ellen Kullman said in a statement: “We delivered exceptional full-year results in 2011 despite significant market headwinds late in the year. Our market-driven science continues to meet customer needs in food, energy and protection. Acquisitions in Nutrition & Health and Industrial Biosciences, coupled with robust and disciplined productivity efforts across our businesses, contributed to our successful performance.”

The company’s agriculture unit reported the only volume increase during the quarter, of 3%, while revenue was up 8%. DuPont said the increase was mainly due to strong sales in Latin America.

For the full year, the company earned about $3.5bn, compared with $3.05bn in 2010.

The company did not revise its 2012 earnings forecast of $4.20 to $4.40 a share, an increase of 7-12% on 2011.

DuPont has successfully completed its bid for Danisco in May, 2011 in a deal that valued the Danish company at about $6.5bn, up from an initial offer equivalent to about $6.3bn.