The Bayer Group had a slower-than-usual start to 2023, according to its Q1 quarterly statement presented by CEO Werner Baumann. However, the company’s sales figures were similar to the powerful results in the prior-year quarter.
Baumann explained that while the glyphosate business’s normalization accelerated, the effect was primarily counterbalanced by growth in other segments of the Crop Science business.
In the Crop Science division, the sales decreased by 1.1% to €8.351 billion, adjusting for foreign exchange and portfolio effects. However, excluding the glyphosate business, Crop Science sales increased by approximately 8%. In addition, the division reported double-digit percentage increases in the Europe/Middle East/Africa and Asia/Pacific regions. On the other hand, sales in Latin and North America declined due to lower volumes.
Herbicides sales, influenced heavily by lower volumes and prices for glyphosate-based products, dropped by 24.3%. In contrast, the Corn Seed & Traits segment posted a substantial sales increase of 15.8%, primarily due to higher prices in North America and Europe/Middle East/Africa.
Similarly, Insecticides sales rose by 12.6% thanks to significant price and volume increases in Europe/Middle East/Africa and Latin America, more than compensating for lower volumes in North America. Again, the popularity of products like Movento™ and Curbix™ primarily drove the increase in these regions.
The Soybean Seed & Traits segment also experienced growth, with sales up by 1.4%, primarily driven by higher volumes in Latin America. Meanwhile, sales of Fungicides remained at the prior-year level. Higher prices across all regions counteracted lower volumes, particularly in Latin and North America.
However, Bayer’s Crop Science division reported an 11.0% decrease in EBITDA before special items to €3.267 billion, mainly due to falling sales in Latin and North America. Additionally, an increase in the cost of goods sold due to high inflation also impacted earnings.
Despite the slower start, the company’s growth in various parts of the Crop Science business, especially outside the glyphosate segment, indicates a positive outlook for the remainder of the year.
Image provided by Bayer AG