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Sales of textile enzymes for abrasion of denim fall at Novozymes
Jan '09
Novozymes A/S Group releases the Financial Statement for 2008. 2008 sales growth was strong at 13% in local currencies. Earnings were also very satisfactory. Lower growth in the fourth quarter. Expected sales growth in 2009 of 8–13% in DKK in an uncertain market. Favorable long-term trends lead to new, increased long-term targets. Higher future growth supported by higher investments.

• 2008 sales up by 13% in LCY and 10% in DKK to DKK 8,146m
• Sales growth of 5% in LCY and 10% in DKK in the fourth quarter
• 53.5% gross margin compared to 53.1% in 2007
• Operating profit of DKK 1,504m, a 7% increase, excluding one-off item in 2007
• Operating profit margin of 18.5% compared to 18.9% in 2007, excluding one-off item
• Net profit increase of 8% to DKK 1,062m, excluding one-off item in 2007
• Free cash flow before acquisitions of DKK 755m against DKK 963m in 2007
• Net interest-bearing debt of DKK 1,380m compared to DKK 1,769m at year-end 2007
• Equity ratio of 45% at year-end 2008

“2008 was a strong year for Novozymes. I'm very pleased with our performance,” says Steen Riisgaard, President and CEO. “Lower growth in the fourth quarter may point to a slowdown as we go into 2009, but we see very favorable trends and opportunities further ahead, so we have upped our level of ambition and increased our long-term targets.”

Outlook for 2009 - The severity of the global economic slowdown remains very uncertain, and efforts have been made to reflect this in the outlook. The outlook in DKK is positively affected by assumed exchange rate levels for 2009. Thus, assuming that exchange rates for the company's key currencies remain at the spot rates on January 21, 2009, the outlook is:

• 2009 sales growth of 8–13% in DKK and 3–8% in LCY
• Growth in operating profit of 10–15% in DKK and in net profit of 5–10% in DKK
• Free cash flow of around DKK 100–300m, reduced by a high level of investments

Sales of textile enzymes for abrasion of denim fell during the year as the result of a fashion trend in favor of darker denims and a slowing US denim demand. Total textile sales were down 16% for the year.

Asia Pacific sales increased by 5% in LCY during the year. Detergent and food enzyme sales performed well. However, the depressed textile industry and overall fourth-quarter performance contributed negatively to the development in this region.

Novozymes A/S

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