TORONTO, ONTARIO – May 30, 2017: Feronia Inc. (“Feronia” or the “Company”) (TSX-V: FRN) today released its financial results for the three months ended March 31, 2017. All amounts in this release are expressed in US dollars unless otherwise indicated.
Q1 2017 Highlights
Produced 26,301 tonnes of fruit (Q1 2016: 21,277 tonnes), a year-over-year increase of 24%
Produced 4,869 tonnes of Crude Palm Oil (“CPO”) (Q1 2016: 4,045 tonnes), a year-over-year increase of 20%
Fresh fruit bunch yield for the three months of 1.58 tonnes per mature hectare (Q1 2016: 1.49 tonnes per mature hectare)
Oil extraction rate (“OER”) of 18.5% (Q1 2016: 19.0%)
Revenues of $2,147,000 (Q1 2016: $3,966,000) primarily from the sale of 2,422 tonnes of CPO at an average price of $723 per tonne (Q1 2016: 5,551 tonnes at $636 per tonne)
Completed second drawdown of $10 million from the previously announced DFI Debt Facility
Completed installation of new Lokutu boiler which is now operational
Net loss of $5.8 million or $0.01 per share (Q1 2016: net loss of $0.3 million or $0.01 per share), an increase largely the result of a decrease in finance income of $6,292,000
Secured orders for remaining CPO production for 2017
Published first Sustainability Report
Xavier de Carnière, Chief Executive Officer of Feronia Inc. commented:
“Q1 2017 was a quarter which met our expectations across all key metrics and, operationally, posed no surprises.
“Year-on-year increases in production are something we expect to happen as the yields achieved from our young trees continue to increase.
“The temporary reduction in OER at Lokutu, which was the result of commissioning the new boiler and the trade-off between extraction rate and capacity constraints, is already forgotten at the time of writing this report, and we are now looking forward to reporting our progress on that KPI in Q2 with the new boiler up and running.
“Our sales being lower than in Q1 2016 came as a result of us investing the right amount of time and efforts into negotiating contracts for the sale of our remaining CPO production in 2017 with our customers, and coming to terms that are beneficial to all parties, in a constant effort to foster partnerships and compete more efficiently against imports.
“It is satisfying to report a quarter’s results where things went largely to plan and significant progress has been made on many fronts. And it is even more satisfying to know that we will have more good news to report in subsequent quarters”.
For further information please contact:
Xavier de Carniere Chief Executive Officer, Feronia Inc. 44 (0)7468 697 658 email@example.com www.feronia.com
Paul Dulieu Director of Communications and Corporate Development, Feronia Inc. 44 (0)7554 521421 firstname.lastname@example.org www.feronia.com
About Feronia Inc.
Feronia is an agribusiness operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
At the heart of Feronia lies a long established palm oil business, Plantations et Huileries du Congo (PHC), which has three remotely located plantations; Lokutu, Yaligimba and Boteka.
When Feronia acquired its palm oil business from Unilever in 2009, it had suffered from years of underinvestment and considerable disruption caused by conflict in the DRC. Our initial focus has been on rebuilding the business and resuming production to secure its future and the livelihoods of our employees.
Feronia’s plantations produce crude palm oil (CPO) and palm kernel oil (PKO). CPO is part of the staple and traditional diet of the Congolese and, with our products sold locally in the DRC, we are well placed to help decrease reliance on imports and increase food security and quality.
Feronia prides itself on being the guardian of our 106 year-old palm oil business and its employees, communities, and environment. We have a long term commitment to improve the living and working environment of our employees and their communities and are committed to sustainable agriculture, environmental protection and community inclusion. Feronia has in place an Environmental and Social Action Plan which is focused on implementing environmental and social best practice and improving social infrastructure.
Feronia is working towards certification by the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) and is implementing IFC/World Bank standards for environmental and social sustainability. Our oil palm replanting programme is brownfield in nature – replacing old palms with new – and it has no reliance on deforestation.
Feronia’s management team has extensive experience in managing both plantations and farming operations in emerging markets.
For more information please see www.feronia.com
Except for statements of historical fact contained herein, the information in this press release constitutes “forward-looking information” within the meaning of Canadian securities law. Such forward-looking information may be identified by words such as “anticipates”, “plans”, “proposes”, “estimates”, “intends”, “expects”, “believes”, “may” and “will”. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate; actual results and future events could differ materially from such statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, among others: risks related to foreign operations (including various political, economic and other risks and uncertainties), the interpretation and implementation of the “Loi Portant Principes Fondamentaux Relatifs A L’Agriculture”, termination or non-renewal of concession rights or expropriation of property rights, political instability and bureaucracy, limited operating history, lack of profitability, lack of infrastructure in the DRC, high inflation rates, limited availability of debt financing in the DRC, fluctuations in currency exchange rates, competition from other businesses, reliance on various factors (including local labour, importation of machinery and other key items and business relationships), the Company’s reliance on one major customer, lower productivity at the Company’s plantations and arable farming operations, risks related to the agricultural industry (including adverse weather conditions, shifting weather patterns, and crop failure due to infestations), a shift in commodity trends and demands, vulnerability to fluctuations in the world market, the lack of availability of qualified management personnel and stock market volatility. Details of the risk factors relating to Feronia and its business are discussed under the heading “Risks and Uncertainties” in Feronia’s Management’s discussion and Analysis for the year ended December 31, 2016, a copy of which is available on the Company’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com. Most of these factors are outside the control of the Company. Investors are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking information. Except as otherwise required by applicable securities statutes or regulation, the Company expressly disclaims any intent or obligation to update publicly forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its regulation services provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.