Global economy is expected to grow moderately but extensively in 2015. Markedly weakened euro is accelerating the recovery in the euro area but the most important source of growth is private consumption. In Finland, prospects of private consumption are, however, grim; consumer purchasing power is weakening and cautiousness continues. In the UK, economic growth is continuing and private consumption is growing. Weakening of the Russian economy continues. Raisio expects the grocery market to remain relatively stable compared to other sectors.
Innovations - the key to Raisio's future success.
The crisis in Russia and Ukraine has increased the risks of our operations in the area, but we have managed, for example, to decrease the amount of sales receivables. Raisio is closely monitoring the development of the situation; the company has the ability to rapidly adjust its operations to changing situations.
The EU zone's milk quota system will come to an end in March 2015. As the demand for milk products is globally growing, it becomes more and more important that dairy chain operators are able to innovate products in line with consumer needs and to improve the efficiency of milk production. Raisio sees that top innovations, such as Benemilk, are the key to future success.
Management of the volatility of raw material prices is an important aspect of risk management.
Volatility in raw material prices is estimated to remain at a high level. Low economic growth and potentially good harvests may calm down the price development but, on the other hand, extreme weather events resulting from climate warming will probably cause sudden changes in harvest expectations and price levels of various agricultural commodities. In terms of profitability, the role of risk management remains essential both for value and volume.
Raisio's growth phase is a period of changes, during which several of the company's activities are developed and business management is considerably more challenging than in ordinary circumstances. Growth and rationalisation projects may still cause substantial costs in relation to the company size.