SÃO PAULO – Even with the $2.16 billion sale of its Keystone Foods business to Tyson Foods, Marfrig Global Foods looks poised to stay active in the beef production business.
While Marfrig sold its chicken production business in the deal on Aug. 20, the company its beef patty facility in North Baltimore, Ohio. The plant is one of the largest in the US and can produce 91,000 metric tons of fresh and frozen beef patties annually. It also brings in an annual revenue of $300 million or 11 percent of Marfrig’s total revenue.
During the second quarter earnings call on Aug. 15, the Brazilian-based company said it would also invest around BRL80 million ($19.8 million) into a new beef patty plant in Brazil. The plant is expected to have an annual production capacity of 20,000 metric tons with operations starting in April 2019.
“In terms of our commercial portfolio, we'll continue working to expand our portfolio of higher-value products…For our liability management, once the Keystone transaction is concluded, we will announce the next step in this process,” Marfrig Global Foods CEO Martin Secco said during the earnings call.
In April, Marfrig agreed to acquire 51 percent of Kansas City, Missouri-based National Beef Packing Co. The company paid $969 million for an equity interest in National Beef, which reported sales of $7.3 billion in 2017.
The addition of National Beef solidified Marfrig in its global position in the beef industry. It gave Marfrig additional access to National Beef’s 40 export markets, including Japan, where beef exports are currently banned.
Following the Keystone selloff and the acquisition of the National Beef, Marfrig projected BRL40 billion ($10.5 billion) in total net revenue. For the remainder of 2018, total net revenue was forecasted at BRL20-21 billion ($5.3-$5.5 billion). Adjusted EBITDA margins also should reach 9 to 10 percent.
Finally, the company plans to see a reduction in its net debt/EBITDA from 4.2x to between 2.2x and 2.5 by the end of 2018.