Thai Union’s Q1 2024 profits up on improved market demand across core categories

“Thai Union Group’s focus on our core business of ambient, frozen, and petcare has been instrumental in returning our business to growth."
A farmer holding three shrimp in their hand
In Q1, Thai Union launched a shrimp decarbonization initiative in partnership with The Nature Conservancy and Ahold Delhaize USA | Photo courtesy of Thai Union/LinkedIn
6 Min

Samut Sakhon, Thailand-based seafood producer Thai Union reported a year-over-year rise in profits in the first quarter of 2024, with the company attributing the spike to demand recovery across its core product categories, according to its latest results report released 8 May.

The company’s Q1 2024 net profits rose to nearly THB 1.2 billion (USD 31.2 million, EUR 29 million), up 12.9 percent year over year. When compared to Q1 2023’s adjusted net profit, which excludes the share of profit and tax benefits it accrued from its investment in the Red Lobster seafood restaurant chain, Thai Union’s Q1 2024 net profit total represents a nearly 54 percent increase.

Strong rebounds in demand played out across the core categories of Thai Union’s production, such as ambient, petcare, and value-added products, rising even despite lower foreign exchange gains, reduced share of profit, higher costs, and increased interest expenses, the company said.

“Thai Union Group’s focus on our core business of ambient, frozen, and petcare has been instrumental in returning our business to growth,” Thai Union CEO Thiraphong Chansiri said. “Our group demonstrated great resilience during 2023 when we faced a challenging operating environment, and after seeing initial signs of a recovery in our performance in the final quarter of last year, I’m pleased to see that we have now emerged even stronger.”

Thai Union's financial situation was also impacted by a write-off of its investment in the struggling Red Lobster restaurant chain in late 2023. Thai Union upped its investment in Red Lobster in 2020, taking a larger stake in the chain as part of a consortium that bought out Golden Gate Capital’s remaining equity. However, in January 2024, after several consecutive periods of poor performance, Thai Union announced it aimed to pursue an exit from its strategic partnership and minority investment in Red Lobster Master Holdings, which it has held since 2016. Chansiri said in March he isn’t expecting to earn much from the sale of Red Lobster.

Thai Union posted a loss of THB 17.2 billion (USD 464.8 million, EUR 432.6 million) in the fourth quarter of 2023, culminating in its write-off of its investment in Red Lobster, which resulted in a one-time impairment charge of THB 18.5 billion (USD 530 million, 481 million) that applied to its Q4 2023 financial report

One of Thai Union's few categories that struggled in Q1 2024 was ...

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