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Bunge reports significant growth in 2023

Despite a challenging outlook for 2024, the agribusiness giant remains confident in its strategic approach and plans for substantial investments.

2560px Bunge Limited Logo

Bunge Global SA, has reported notable financial growth for the fourth quarter and the entire year of 2023. The company's full-year GAAP diluted EPS (earnings per share) rose to $14.87, up from $10.51 in the previous year. On an adjusted basis, which excludes certain gains, charges, and mark-to-market timing differences, the EPS stood at $13.66 compared to $13.91 last year.

For the fourth quarter, the GAAP diluted EPS was $4.18, a significant increase from the previous year's $2.21. Adjusted EPS for the quarter was $3.70, compared to $3.24 in the prior year. These strong results are attributed to excellent execution across the company's value chains.

Bunge's cash flow has also shown robust performance. The cash provided by operations in 2023 was $3.308 billion, a stark contrast to the $5.549 billion used in the previous year. Adjusted funds from operations (FFO) were reported at $2.466 billion, slightly up from $2.357 billion in the prior year.

However, the company's income tax expense increased, with $219 million for the quarter and $714 million for the full year, mainly due to higher pre-tax income and an earnings mix. The adjusted effective income tax rate for the full year was 23%, up from 17% the previous year.

Looking ahead to 2024, Bunge forecasts a full-year adjusted EPS of approximately $9.00 per share, excluding pending acquisitions. This projection is based on the current margin environment and forward curves. The forecast reflects expected declines in Agribusiness, specifically in Processing and Merchandising, and in Refined and Specialty Oils, mainly in the U.S. However, improvements are anticipated in Milling and Corporate and Other segments.

Bunge's CEO, Greg Heckman, remains confident in the company's strategic positioning, despite anticipating a less robust market in 2024. He credits the past year's success to significant accomplishments in all business areas, including investments in core capabilities, growth areas, sustainability, and new technology. The company also announced a transformative combination with Viterra, aimed at strengthening and diversifying Bunge's business operations.

The company also plans significant investments in 2024, with capital expenditures expected to range from $1.2 to $1.4 billion, and forecasts an adjusted annual effective tax rate of 21% to 25%, net interest expense between $300 to $330 million, and depreciation and amortization of approximately $450 million.

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