Annual Report 2017/18

Letter to Shareholders

Strategy delivering strong results across all regions

Twenty years ago, Barry Callebaut was listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange. Since then, our company has developed into the world’s leading chocolate and cocoa company and the growth champion in the food industry. Our proven long-term strategy and its smart execution form the basis for our consistent value creation for our shareholders and all other stakeholders.

Related Downloads

Barry Callebaut Letter to Shareholders Annual Report Fiscal Year 2018/19
Patrick De Maeseneire, Chairman of the Board of Directors, and Antoine de Saint-Affrique, CEO.

Key Figures


Fiscal year 2017/18 in brief

  • Sales volume up +6.3%, well above the market growth1, first time over 2 million tonnes
  • Operating profit (EBIT, recurring) up +21.2% in local currencies (+25.3% in CHF) to CHF 554.0 million
  • Net profit (recurring) up +31.0% in local currencies (+35.9% in CHF) to CHF 357.4 million
  • Free cash flow of CHF 311.9 million
  • On track to deliver on mid-term guidance2 
  • Board member James (Jim) Donald will not stand for reelection. Suja Chandrasekaran, Angela Wei Dong and Markus Neuhaus proposed as new Board members
  • Proposed payout to shareholders of CHF 24.00 per share, up +20.0%


1 Source: Nielsen, +1.8% in volume for the period August 2017 to August 2018 – 25 countries.
2 On average for the 4-year period 2015/16 to 2018/19: 4–6% volume growth
and EBIT above volume growth in local currencies, barring any major unforeseen events.

Related Downloads

Key Figures - Fiscal year 201718 in brief

Business Review

Region EMEA

Strong growth continued

Region EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) delivered a volume growth well above the market, and a double-digit EBIT increase.

Related Downloads

Region EMEA Business Review

Region Americas

Solid top- and bottom-line performance, investing for growth

Region Americas delivered a solid year. A strong EBIT reflects a favorable product mix and strong operational performance. Investments in capacity expansions will allow for future growth.

Region Americas Business Review

Region Asia Pacific

Continued strong double-digit growth

Region Asia Pacific had another very strong year with double-digit growth, both top- and bottom-line, and a particularly strong performance in China, Japan and Indonesia.

Region Asia Pacific Business Review

Global Cocoa

Healthy growth continued

Operating profit further improved in local currencies, benefiting from the completed Cocoa Leadership project.

Related Downloads

Global Cocoa business Review
Image Slider Sales Volume Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider Sales Revenue Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider EBIT Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider Net Profit Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider Chocolate Academy Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider Employee Academy Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider Factories Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider Ruby 4th Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider 175 Years Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group
Image Slider 20 years SIX Swiss Exchange Fiscal Year 2017/18 Barry Callebaut Group

What we do

We are the world’s leading manufacturer of chocolate and cocoa products, mastering every step in the value chain from the sourcing of raw materials to the production of the finest chocolates.

Value Chain Graphic

Our strategy

Barry Callebaut aims to consistently outperform the global chocolate and cocoa market. This ambitious long-term strategy is based on four pillars:

Our Strategy

Our Success Stories

The highlights in fiscal year 2017/18

These are the highlights in fiscal year 2017/18 along our four strategic pillars – Expansion, Innovation, Cost Leadership, Sustainability and People:
Expansion - Opening of Barry Callebaut Group's 21st CHOCOLATE ACADEMYTM Center


Barry Callebaut opened a CHOCOLATE ACADEMY™ Center in Johannesburg, South Africa. This is our 21st CHOCOLATE ACADEMY™ Center worldwide, and the first on the African continent. The new academy will host master classes with a strong focus on chocolate fundamentals. Talented chefs and industry experts from around the world will share their passion, innovative ideas and expertise around chocolate and cocoa products.

Ruby Rubina

Leading through innovation: Ruby chocolate

A great example of our innovation capability is the launch of the fourth type of chocolate, ruby. The ruby bean is unique because the fresh berry-fruitiness and color precursors are naturally present. After taking more than ten years to develop ruby chocolate, it took barely six months after the formal launch in September 2017 for the fourth type of chocolate to conquer the world.

Cost Leadership - Barry Callebaut Group's putting some ‘Poka’ in productivity

Putting some ‘Poka’ in productivity

At our factories, ensuring the highest quality of our products is key, as well as the flawless, cost-efficient functioning of the manufacturing process. And that's where the ‘Poka-app’ comes in to support. In this user-friendly, versatile, cloud-based app all necessary information on machines and processes can be captured and updated via a tablet and shared in real time with the team members.

Sustainability – Barry Callebaut's Group, Pilots rolled out in Indonesia, Brazil, Côte d'Ivoire, Ghana and Cameroon

Piloting for progress

Our plan to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025, Forever Chocolate, is all about tackling the structural issues in the cocoa supply chain head-on. To learn how we can accelerate impact on the ground, we are launching various pilot projects. The purpose of these pilots is to test innovative approaches to sustainable cocoa farming, and to learn if these approaches are replicable, scalable and lead to farmers’ self-sustainance.

People – Barry Callebaut's Group, Marbach Development Program

True leaders never stop learning

True leaders never stop learning, that is our CEO’s, Antoine de Saint-Affrique, conviction: “Our employees should constantly develop themselves, explore new frontiers, feed their curiosity and encourage the same with their teams.” In 2004, the Marbach Development Program was created, named after the training and conference center in Marbach Castle, Germany. More than 3,500 employees have so far participated in these programs.


Forever Chocolate

Our plan to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025

Forever Chocolate is our plan to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025 – to ensure that chocolate will be around forever. As the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products we have a moral obligation as well as a business interest to tackle the structural issues in the chocolate supply chain. Therefore, we have to lift cocoa farmers out of poverty, ensure children are not engaged in child labor, become carbon positive, eliminate deforestation from our supply chain as a step to becoming forest positive, and have 100% sustainable ingredients in all our products.

In fiscal year 2017/18 we made great progress to achieving the targets we set ourselves in 2016. Our quantified time-bound objectives enable us to engrain our sustainability agenda across all our business functions.

The progress data show how through our sourcing, processing and sales we are driving change, supporting cocoa farming communities, reducing resource consumption in our factories and driving the uptake of sustainably sourced chocolate.

Forever Chocolate

Our People

Our People

Growing our talents by creating a unique employee experience and sustaining our culture and values

Our people are the foundation of our success. The strength of our organization comes from the contribution of each and every individual, with our passion and company values as common denominators. We strive to create a constructive environment with respect for the individual, where ongoing development, passion, integrity, entrepreneurship and customer focus are encouraged and stimulated. We therefore maintain a focus on fostering our unique culture, attracting, developing and retaining brilliant talents with diverse skills from all over the world, while we build a unique workplace that will enable the company to fulfill its purpose.

Chairman's Award 2018

Barry Callebaut's Chairman's Award Winners 2018

Chairman's & Value Awards 2018

The Chairman's Award recognizes employees who have been with Barry Callebaut for a number of years and have demonstrated outstanding performance at work, as well as a strong commitment to their local communities. They are individuals who embody our company values.

The Value Award recognizes managers and their teams who are willing to go the extra mile, who are putting all their passion into their work and, thus, have made a positive impact on the company in the past fiscal year. The awards were given for each of our five company values: customer focus, passion, entrepreneurship, team spirit and integrity.

Financial Report

Sales Volume
Sales Revenue

*See page 48, Annual Report 2017/18, Summary of Accounting Policies – Restatement and reclassification of prior year comparatives.

Net profit for the year

*See page 48, Annual Report 2017/18, Summary of Accounting Policies – Restatement and reclassification of prior year comparatives.

Sales Volume by Region
Sales Volume by Product Group

Corporate Governance

Corporate Governance

The information that follows is provided in accordance with the Directive on Information Relating to Corporate Governance (DCG) issued by the SIX Exchange Regulation division. The principles and rules of Corporate Governance as practiced by Barry Callebaut AG are laid down in the Articles of Incorporation, the Internal Regulations of the Board of Directors and the Charters of the Board Committees. These are reviewed regularly by the Board of Directors and adapted as needed.

Board of Directors

Barry Callebaut Board of Directors
From left to right: Jakob Baer, Vice Chairman, Tim Minges, James (Jim) Donald (until December 12, 2018), Fernando Aguirre, Patrick De Maeseneire, Chairman, Nicolas Jacobs, Juergen Steinemann, Elio Leoni Sceti. – The Board proposes Suja Chandrasekaran, Angela Wei Dong and Markus Neuhaus for election as new Board members. Status as of November 7, 2018.

Executive Committee

Barry Callebaut Executive Committee
From left to right: From left to right: Peter Boone, President & CEO Americas, Pablo Perversi, Chief Innovation, Sustainability & Quality Officer; Global Head of Gourmet, Steven Retzlaff, President Global Cocoa, Remco Steenbergen, Chief Financial Officer, Antoine de Saint-Affrique, Chief Executive Officer, Ben De Schryver, President Asia Pacific, Massimo Garavaglia, President EMEA, Dirk Poelman, Chief Operations Officer.

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