2016 was a great year for Marel. It was a year of strategic moves and solid performance with 983 million in pro forma revenue and 14.6% EBIT.
I would like to thank our customers and employees for an eventful and enjoyable year. With passion and dedication, we are transforming the way food is processed.
The year 2016 was a great year for Marel. Our customers are setting up state-of-the-art processing plants in Asia, South America, North America and Europe that will enable them to offer affordable quality food. Exciting orders were secured in Africa and the Middle-East as well. Our product portfolio is strong and we introduced several revolutionary products to the market in 2016. Our vision is a world where quality food is affordable and produced in a safe and sustainable way.
After successfully simplifying our operations, organization and processes, we were ready to take the next steps in executing our strategy of being a full line provider to the poultry, meat and fish industries.
We finalized the acquisition of MPS Meat Processing Systems at the beginning of the year, allowing Marel to become a full-line supplier to the meat industry. In fact, we were repeating the game where we became a full line supplier to the poultry industry with the acquisition of Stork Food Systems in 2008.
Integration is on track with the first year's focus being on combining and cross training the sales force and synchronizing the financial reporting. Companies can become too focused on internal issues and lose sight of serving the customers' needs following acquisitions and during business refocusing. We are acutely aware of this and have always emphasized the essential importance of being at-the-customer, for-the customer while advancing our business.
From January 1, 2017, all Marel meat activities are all branded as Marel. We will take specific steps in the coming quarters to fully integrate our businesses with a focus on after sales services and supply chain activities.
We have a good business model with high quality of earnings. Our revenues are well balanced geographically and consist of greenfield projects, modernization and extension projects with a strong backbone in our maintenance business.
The cash flow is strong and we managed to execute the acquisition of MPS without issuing any new shares. As we are advancing the businesses of our customers, we are advancing the business of Marel with extensive investments in our manufacturing, innovation and IT platforms. At year-end 2016, the net debt EBITDA is x2.25 in line with the targeted capital structure.
Pro forma revenues were €983 million, compared to 819 million in the previous year for Marel stand alone. We have gradually increased the operational performance in recent years and deliver a solid operational performance with 14.6% EBIT in 2016.
Earnings per share increased by 34% between years due to an increased operational performance and a better utilization of the balance sheet.
Throughout the year, the modernization and maintenance business remained strong while we saw some softness in the greenfield and expansion projects at the beginning of the year. However, in Q4 we saw the order intake at an all-time high with landmark projects for the poultry, meat and fish industries around the globe resulting in a strong order book entering 2017.
Marel is the leading global provider of advanced processing systems and services to the poultry, fish and meat industries. We are at the center point of prevailing trends in a fast changing and dynamic world. The global population is expected to reach between 9 and 10 billion people in the next two or three decades.
Moreover, due to urbanization and better economic prospects in general, the proportion of people considered “active” consumers is increasing at a faster rate than ever before.
The need for solutions and services to process affordable quality food in a safe and sustainable way is clearer than ever.
As a united team, we strive for excellence in serving our customers’ needs. The aim is to continue to grow organically above market rates with focused market approach. Strong financials and an experienced team make Marel well equipped to take on further growth through strategic acquisitions.
We are firmly committed to delivering increased value to society, customers and shareholders by enhancing safe and sustainable food processing.