Change of leadership at LDC Group

Denis Lambert, chairman of the board of leading French poultry company LDC Group, has announced that Phillippe Gélin will be his successor in the role.

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Denis Lambert, chairman of the board of leading French poultry company LDC Group, has announced that Phillippe GĂ©lin will be his successor in the role.

At a press conference coinciding with the publication of the company’s half-year results last week, a change of governance was announced, reports LSA-Conso.

In March of 2022, Lambert, will step back as chairman as GĂ©lin takes over operational management of the group. As the son of one of the company’s founders, Lambert will reach his 63rd birthday next year. He will be handing over the leadership of the company based in western France, which has undergone huge growth.

Currently the director of the international division, GĂ©lin will take on the additional responsibilities. 

From next March, StĂ©phane SallĂ© will take over the management of LDC’s poultry division. Already working for the company for 18 years, SallĂ© is currently the director of the catering division.

LDC’s upstream business has been led by Bruno Mousset since Gilles Huttepain retired in April of 2021.

Lambert has undertaken to support the new management team throughout the group’s 2022-2023 financial year. 

Sales up for the half-year

Results were presented for the LDC Group for first half of the 2021-2022 financial year, which ended on August 30, 2021. 

Compared to the same period of the previous year, sales by the Poultry division were up 6.3% to more than 383,000 metric tons (mt).

At EUR1.817 billion (US$2.06 billion), revenue increased by 10.6%. Underlying these improvements were the recovery of hospitality in the recovery period following the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the launch of new products, and the integration of the Ronsard business from May 1.

Figures presented by the company show LDC’s sales ahead of market trends in all categories. 

For the first six months of the fiscal year, LDC’s International division increase sales volume by 7.9% year-on-year to 89,000mt. This uplift contributed to a 19.4% jump in revenue to just under EUR229 million.

Of the various subsidiaries, the one in Poland contributed 68% of revenue, Hungary 26%, and Belgium, 7%. 

Year-on-year, LDC’s Catering division also grew its business — by 12.8% in volume (to 80,600mt) and by 20.9% in value (to EUR350.2 million).

Impact of rising feed prices

Despite this good sales performance, Lambert warned of the sharp rise in the cost of feed ingredients.

He warned that the prices rises — 29% for soybean meal, 54% for corn (maize), and 57% for wheat — are a concern for the group, reported LSA-Conso.

So far, the company has successfully passed on the price rises to its customers, but this might not continue. 

Continued price rises since September have raised the cost of poultry production from feed alone by 24%, according to Lambert. 

LDC’s latest acquisition

Most recent in a series of acquisitions by LDC over recent years was that of Capestone Organic Poultry of Wales, announced at the end of October.

Commenting on the deal, Lambert said the Capestone holds a 7% share of the free-range poultry market in the United Kingdom. 

Great Britain is Europe's second largest poultry market, and demand is growing, said Lambert.

More on LDC Group

With annual slaughterings of more than 578 million birds, LDC is the largest poultry meat company in Europe, according to the WATT Top Poultry Companies database.

LDC has 86 production sites across Europe, and exports account for around 20% of overall sales.

In May of this year, LDC acquired all but one of the sites operated by the Ronsard Group in France from Eureden. 

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