EUROPE – Chr. Hansen, a global bioscience company, has solid organic revenue growth of 9% in the first nine months of 2017/18.

The company reported a 3% reported growth due to adverse currency impacts to which Food Cultures & Enzymes grew 12%, Health & Nutrition 8% and Natural Colors 5%.

Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) before special items increased by 1% to US$288.15 million, corresponding to an EBIT margin before special items of 27.5%. In Q3, organic growth was 9%, and EBIT before special items increased by 3% to US$110 million, corresponding to an EBIT margin before special items of 29.7%.

However, the outlook for 2017/18 is unchanged.

“We are pleased to report that we maintained the sales momentum in Q3, led by broad-based growth in Food Cultures & Enzymes.

In Health & Nutrition, the human health business in North America is improving, and growth in emerging markets remains strong.

Animal health again delivered strong growth in EMEA, APAC and LATAM, where we are strengthening our presence. Growth in Natural Colors improved, driven primarily by APAC and EMEA,” said CEO Mauricio Graber.

“Our strategic lighthouse projects – bioprotection, plant health, and human microbiome – all progressed well in the third quarter.

Sales of bioprotective solutions grew approximately 25% in Q3, which was in line with expectations, bringing YTD organic sales growth to approximately 35%.”

The company also reported that plant health showed very strong sales growth, driven by the recently launched biological nematicides, Quartzo and Presence®.

It extended the collaboration with FMC, a partner in plant health, and look forward to launching a strong pipeline of new products in the years ahead.

“In the human microbiome, we announced two significant scientific developments in Q3.

A partnership with Prota Therapeutics to test our LGG strain in a Phase III clinical trial to potentially develop a treatment for peanut allergy; and an exciting result from a Chr. Hansen-led clinical trial.

The trial demonstrated how ingesting a carefully selected probiotic strain can reduce certain side effects associated with the regular consumption of acetylicsalicylic acid – the active ingredient in aspirin.”

Given the performance and cash-flow generation in the first nine months, an extraordinary dividend totalling US$137 million (DKK 5.94 per share) will be paid out on July 3, 2018.