The company said that ABS, its bovine business, achieved profit growth of 29%, with revenue and volume growth in all regions, following the launch of Sexcel, ABS’ sexed genetics product.
Beef volumes were up 8% with the successful launch of proprietary NuEra beef genetics and increased use of beef genetics in dairy herds. It added that its pig genetic business, PIC, was performing well.
Overall revenue of £470.3m increased 2% (6% in constant currency) with strong bovine revenues, up 8% (11% in constant currency), primarily from strong sexed semen sales, while porcine revenues were 1% lower (up 3% in constant currency).
Adjusted profit before tax was up 4% to £58.5m (up 9% in constant currency), with a strong performance in Genus ABS, up 29% in constant currency, and continued growth of 5% in PIC in constant currency. Adjusted operating profit including joint ventures improved 10% in constant currency, or 12% before increased gene editing spending.
It said its statutory profit before tax was down 81% to £7.8m, due principally to a reduction in the non-cash fair value of biological assets. However, statutory profit after tax increased by 21% to £41.6m as a result of non-cash deferred tax credits related to biological assets arising from US tax reforms
Karim Bitar, chief executive, said: “Genus performed strongly in 2018, achieving our financial objectives and making good strategic progress. ABS’ growth was particularly strong, alongside another good year for PIC.
“The successful launch of Sexcel, our innovative proprietary 21st century sexed semen product, in September 2017, was a real highlight after many years of pioneering development.”
He said it was “very pleasing to hear” from dairy farmers how the product performance was exceeding expectations.
“In the short term, the external environment for many of our customers is challenging due to trade disputes and the recent spread of African Swine Fever to China. Notwithstanding this, we see continuing opportunities for growth,” he said.