"We are off to a dynamic start in the fiscal year 2018 and consider ourselves very well positioned with our strong market presence. Despite extensive investments, volatile exchange rates and higher raw material prices, we operated very profitably," said Dr. Heinz-Jürgen Bertram, CEO of Symrise AG. "The targeted expansion of our product portfolio and our raw material base has paid off. Along with strong demand from our customers, this was the foundation of our success in the first quarter. All segments generated substantial new business and contributed to the growth of our group. We are looking ahead with confidence at our business development for the coming months. We will remain focused on profitable growth, especially through the further expansion of our capacities."
Company executives noted that raw material markets, especially the supply of important fragrance ingredients, remained challenging in the first quarter. The failure to deliver raw materials of some suppliers and a generally higher price level led to cost increases. The Scent & Care segment again benefited from its comprehensive backward integration, retaining full delivery capability due to Symrise’s wide-ranging raw material base. To compensate for the higher raw material costs, Symrise engages in a close dialog with its customers to actively implement price increases.
Scent & Care posted a 6.9% organic sales increase in the first quarter. Considering the negative currency effects and the portfolio effect from the Citratus acquisition, sales in reporting currency amounted to €331.8 million, and thus were slightly lower than year-on-year. The Aroma Molecules division delivered the strongest growth, with organic double-digit percentage increases, in particular in applications for fragrance ingredients. The Cosmetic Ingredients division achieved strong organic growth in the high single-digit percentage range, showing particularly expansive developments in the Asia/Pacific and Latin America regions. The Fragrance division reported a moderate organic increase in sales, especially driven by the Beauty Care and Home Care business units. Beauty Care, which develops and markets body and facial care applications, realized strong organic growth especially in the Asia/Pacific and Latin America regions. In the Home Care business unit, healthy increases were seen in the Asia/Pacific, EAME and Latin America regions, mainly through new business with regional customers. The Fine Fragrances business unit achieved a double-digit growth rate in Latin America as a result of higher demand from regional and local customers.