Bunge lifts 2023 earnings outlook following second quarter profit

Global agribusiness giant Bunge raised its full-year 2023 earnings outlook after posting a second quarter profit above estimates due to improved processing margins, Reuters reported.

Following the announcement, the company’s shares rose sharply, the 2 August report said.

Bunge forecast full-year adjusted profit to be at least US$11.75/share due to an improving margin outlook, up from the previous US$11/share and above the average analyst estimate of US$11.60/share, according to Refinitiv data.

“Higher results in the quarter were primarily driven by softseed crush[ing] and strong Brazil soyabean origination which also contributed to higher crushing results in Brazil and our destination crushing operations in Europe and Asia. Results in the USA were also higher than last year,” the company said on its website on 2 August.

In Refined and Speciality Oils, higher results in North America - driven by food service and fuel demand - were offset by slightly lower results in Europe, South America and Asia, Bunge said.

Against this backdrop, Bunge is working to close a merger deal with crop handler Viterra that – if completed – would create a global agribusiness powerhouse worth about US$34bn with projected earnings of around US$4bn/year, Reuters wrote.

Announcing the second quarter results Bunge CEO Greg Heckman said the Viterra merger would “broaden our global processing and distribution network”.

Bunge’s adjusted profit was US$3.72/share for the three months ended 30 June, compared with US$2.97/share in the same period last year.

The company said it expected full year results for its Agribusiness segment to be up slightly from its prior outlook driven by higher results in Processing but down compared to last year due to lower expected performance in Merchandising.

In Refined and Speciality Oils, Bunge said it expected full-year results to be up from its prior outlook and in line with last year’s record performance.