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Greencore reveals major shake-up of U.S. operations

Greencore reveals major shake-up of U.S. operations

Greencore has a big operation in the United States after its $747.5 million purchase of Peacock Foods in IL, which has annual sales of about $1 billion, at the end of 2016.

Greencore Chief Executive Patrick Coveney will take a direct role leading Greencore US, spending around half his time there.

Yesterday Greencore said that it expected its full-year adjusted earnings per share to range from between 14.7p and 15.7p, down between 15.7p and 16.6p a share.

In a trading update, the Ireland-headquartered company said the costs associated with its restructuring efforts to improve capacity utilisation at some of its USA plants will cost around £3m. "Since then the group has been actively seeking to align the manufacturing network of approximately 2.5m square feet with current and prospective commercial opportunities".

In its trading statement today, Greencore said that fresh production at Rhode Island factory, which represented about 4% of its United States manufacturing footprint, will stop on March 25. However, in both its 2017 results and its trading update for the first quarter of 2018 Greencore had noted the continued low capacity utilisation at some of the original Greencore US sites. This follows an announcement from Greencore last August that it would repurpose the Jacksonville facility following the loss of a supply contract.

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The Rhode Island facility represents approximately 4% of the group's U.S. manufacturing footprint and 2% of its pro forma revenue in FY17.

Greencore said it is making good progress on its US commercial pipeline, and could secure earnings-enhancing new business across several sites in the US Midwest, which would be booked in the first half of its year ending September 2019.

It is now restructuring the USA network to better reflect the commercial pipeline and try and tackle the capacity problem.

There is a chance EPS could be lower as two-thirds of earnings are anticipated to be delivered in the second half of the financial year. "Any incremental capital and cash costs related to the delivery of this new business are not expected to be significant for the group".

Looking ahead, the firm said it continues to expect good organic revenue growth, and that its core business in the USA has continued to perform in line with expectations. Greencore US CEO Chris Kirke is leaving the firm, but will ensure a smooth handover.


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