Monde income grows 53% despite bleeding fake meat biz

By Meg J. Adonis@MegINQ

May 10, 2024 12:00:00

As its alternative meat business continued to post losses, the company behind Lucky Me! instant noodles booked core earnings of P2.9 billion in the first quarter—a 53.4-percent surge—with help from the robust performance of its food and beverage unit.

In a stock exchange filing on Wednesday, Monde Nissin Corp., which also manufactures SkyFlakes crackers, said revenues inched up by 2.1 percent to P20.3 billion, driven by its Asia-Pacific food and beverage (APAC BFB) segment.

Despite fewer selling days due to the Holy Week break in the Philippines, the APAC BFB segment recorded a core net income of P3.1 billion, up by 47.6 percent, due to lower costs.

APAC BFB’s domestic sales during the period rose by 2 percent to P15.8 billion.

“Our APAC BFB margins and profitability have substantially rebounded from last year’s levels, and we believe, given current conditions, that the second quarter will continue to reflect these improvements,” Monde CEO Henry Soesanto said.

Meanwhile, cost control measures allowed the company to trim the losses of alternative meat business Quorn Foods by 32.5 percent to P216 million, the company said in a separate disclosure.

The segment’s revenues also dipped by 4 percent to P3.4 billion due to “category softness” as the company struggled to retain and attract more consumers.

Quorn CEO Marco Bertacca told reporters there was still a challenge in providing customers “with a high quality product at the right price.”

“During the last 18 months, we’ve lost a number of flexitarians (individuals with semi-vegetarian diet) that came into the category to try the product. Many of them moved back to more traditional, less expensive choices,” Bertacca said.

Soesanto added they would continue minimizing costs for the segment and look for “efficiencies” that could bring consumers back to the fake meat category.

Monde announced last year it would restructure Quorn coming from inflation headwinds in 2022.

Monde had reallocated P2.1 billion in initial public offering proceeds previously meant for Quorn to APAC BFB, its main source of revenues. INQ