Bidvest Europe

Bidvest Europe


  Revenue moves 9,8% higher to R37,0 billion in challenging business conditions   
  Solid cash flows as a result of stringent expense and working capital management  
  Prompt action to rightsize the businesses for new trading environment   
  Good sales and profit growth in the Netherlands, Belgium and the UAE   
  3663 among ‘Top 20 big companies to work for’ and ‘best green companies’    
  Deli XL expands on-line ordering and web presence    
  Expansion into Saudi Arabia  


    Fred Barnes, chief executive
Divisional contribution, Revenue: 32.2 , Trading profit: 13,0   Fred Barnes, Chief executive

   Financial indicators
 (for the year ended June 30) 
  Revenue   36 984,5   33 683,8   9,8  
  Trading profit   770,0   879,8   (12,5) 
  Operating profit   499,3   870,0   (42,6) 
  Operating assets   6 781,9   8 111,1   (16,4) 
  Operating liabilities   4 720,6   6 752,6   (30,1) 
  Depreciation   383,1   333,4   14,9  
  Amortisation and impairments of intangible assets   58,8   47,1   24,8  
  Goodwill and intangible assets   2 586,1   3 014,8   (14,2) 
   Sustainable development indicator overview   2009   2008   2007  
  Employees   8 474   8 571   8 526  
  Total training spend (R’000)  13 248   16 239   17 234  
  Training spend per employee (R)  1 563   1 894   2 021  
  Lost time injury frequency rate   5,9   6,2   4,2  
  Work-related fatalities (number)  0   0   0  
  CSI spend (R’000)  5 562   6 154   5 044  
  Total water usage (litres ’000)  159 464   102 119   102 521  
  Water recycled (litres ’000)  9 167   8 663   7 890  
  Total electricity usage (kWh ’000)  94 702   88 242   87 357  
  Electricity from renewable sources (kWh ’000)  66 749   442   474  
  Petrol (litres)  128 057   146 296   125 872  
  Diesel (litres)  29 329 300   29 799 939   28 924 534  
  Total carbon emissions (tonnes)  110 653   122 808   *  
  Carbon emissions per employee (tonnes)  13,1   14,3   *  
 *Information not collated, not relevant or not entirely reliable

Strategic positioning

Recession in Europe, in particular the UK, has showcased our status as a reliable partner and innovative solution-finder. Our positioning as a strong industry player capable of maintaining long-term strategic vision was reinforced by our continuing commitment to superior service, quality and sustainability despite unprecedented economic pressures.

Sustainable development

Bidvest Europe has formed a combined sustainability committee that liaises with the Bidvest sustainability committee. Each national business is represented. The committee facilitates supra-national adoption of successful initiatives.

Our companies possess strong sustainability credentials and meet the highest environmental standards. Systems to monitor environmental performance will enable us to set targets and programmes for next year covering packaging waste, recycled packaging, energy and fuel usage. In 2010, we plan to submit carbon footprint data to the Carbon Disclosure Project.

Recyclable packaging is being reduced across private label ranges.

The division aims to quantify products from sustainable sources to help lift performance levels above legislative requirements.

We are reducing our use of electricity, gas, diesel and LPG. Diesel consumption is down 1,5%. Recycled bio-diesel now powers 710 vehicles at 3663. They use 2,8 million litres annually, up 40%. At Deli XL – Belgium new software analyses electricity and gas consumption, enabling the business to target reductions in electricity consumption of 350mWh and gas consumption of 200mWh in the coming year.

At 3663, more than 500 staff lost their jobs, however, other businesses increased their work force. Employee data reflects the sensitivity with which retrenchments were managed, however other operations have increased their workforce. A major accolade was 3663’s listing in the London Sunday Times Top 20 Best Big Companies to Work for survey.

Focus at the annual sustainability conference is shifting towards community engagement. A new award is to be announced.

Quality assurance and HACCP-trained employees ensure food quality and safety standards are met. Key customers conduct periodic quality audits. Customer complaints are monitored and corrective action taken. Complaints are down.

In tough market conditions, our quality and sustainability credentials underpin our drive for market growth. Additional sustainability information is available on the Bidvest website.



Divisional performance was mixed, with trading profit down by 12,5% to R770,0 million (2008: R879,8 million) while revenue moved 9,8% higher to R37 billion (2008: R33,7 billion). Solid cash flows were maintained as a result of stringent expense and working capital management and prompt action to rightsize the businesses for a new trading environment. The Netherlands, Belgium and UAE businesses produced good year-on-year sales and profit growth, while in the UK sales were flat and profits were down in a challenging environment.