The world’s largest chocolate producer, Barry Callebaut, is aiming to grow after recording a healthy profit for its 2009/2010 business year, which ended on August 31.
In a statement, the company said its net profit rose to SFr252 million ($261 million), while sales were up by 6.8 per cent at SFr5.214 billion.
The company, which is based in Zurich and has activities worldwide, said on Thursday it was confident of outpacing a sluggish chocolate market by looking for more outsourcing deals with food producers.
Barry Callebaut in September signed a long-term deal with Kraft Foods of the United States. Under the terms of the accord, Barry Callebaut is set to deliver the majority of Kraft Foods cocoa products and industrial chocolate requirements around the world.
“We have managed to deliver top results. Market conditions were challenging with a still rather fragile world economy, a flat global chocolate market, high raw material prices and important currency fluctuations,” company chief executive Jürgen Steinemann commented.
A share dividend of SFr14 is being proposed, which represents a 12 per cent increase compared with the previous fiscal year.
swissinfo.ch with agencies