Dutch brewers Heineken saw profits drop despite slight revenue rises, while Germany-based steel manufacturer Schmolz + Bickenbach posted sharp losses. In the US, condiments company Smucker's published a strong first half.
Netherlands-based brewery Heineken announced revenue increases of 3% to €10.4 billion in its 2013 half-year results. Net profit, however, fell by 17% to €639 million.
Non-family chief executive Jean-Francois van Boxmeer blamed the drop on bad weather, meaning fewer people are out celebrating and buying alcoholic drinks, and ongoing difficult economic conditions in Europe.
But, he added that a company-wide cost savings initiative had made savings of €139 million in the first half of the year.
Heineken is controlled by the eponymous family, and owns more than 250 beverage brands including Fosters, Amstel and Sol.
In the US, Ohio-based food and condiments company Smucker's saw sales fall by 1% to $1.4 billion (€1 billion) for the fist quarter of fiscal 2014. However, net income rose by 14% to $126.6 million.
Smucker's said the slight decline in revenue was due to price reductions across its product ranges over the past 12 months, and said sales volumes were up as a result.
Fourth-gen chief executive Richard Smucker said in a statement it was their strongest first-quarter earnings ever.
Schmolz + Bickenbach
Schmolz + Bickenbach, the German steel manufacturer, had a difficult first half of 2013.
The company – controlled by the eponymous founding families – saw revenues fall by 11.9% to €1.7 billion, with sales volumes falling by 6.3%.
The company said revenues fell more than sales due to a decrease in steel prices, and overall it made a net loss of €18.9 million, compared to a profit of €15.8 million for the same period last year.
Schmoltz + Bickenbach said the loss was partly attributable to non-recurring financing costs, but said it was implementing a restructuring and cost-cutting programme.