Adds details on new appointments, sales volume, outlook
April 22 (Reuters) - Swiss chocolate maker Barry Callebaut AG BARN.S appointed Peter Boone as new chief executive officer and reported a drop in net profit as its sales volume showed another decline in the first half of its fiscal year for 2021.
Boone, currently president of the Americas region for Barry Callebaut, will replace Antoine de Saint-Affrique in September, the company said in a statement on Thursday.
Sales volume fell 2.9% in the six months to the end of February, while net profit fell by a similar level to 205.7 million Swiss francs ($224.49 million), reported the Swiss group that makes chocolate and cocoa products for customers including Nestle SA NESN.S or Mondelez International Inc MDLZ.O.
Still, the Zurich-based group said it was confident in achieving its mid-term guidance of an average 5% to 7% volume growth, and earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) above volume growth for the three-year period through 2022/23.
Demand for chocolate is showing signs of recovery after a tough year in which the COVID-19 pandemic reduced impulse buying, out-of-home consumption and gift giving.
Barry Callebaut said sales volume fell 1.3% in the second quarter ended February, recovering somewhat from the 4.3% decline of the first quarter of fiscal 2021.
The company also separately announced that Steve Woolley would replace Boone as Americas president once Boone takes over as chief executive on Sept. 1, whereas Jo Thys will become president of the Asia-Pacific region effective July 1.
($1 = 0.9163 Swiss francs)
(Reporting by Siddharth Cavale in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Schmollinger and Christopher Cushing)
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