Nestlé today announced that it proposes Hanne Jimenez de Mora, Co-founder and Chairperson of management consulting company a-connect (group) AG and formerly a partner with McKinsey & Company, for election to its Board of Directors. The elections will take place at the company's Annual General Meeting (AGM) on April 23, 2020.
At the AGM, Beat Hess will retire from the Board after twelve years of dedicated service. The Board will propose the individual re-election of all other current members of the Board and the Chairman.
"Let me first and foremost thank Beat Hess for his trusted advice and highly appreciated services for many years. At the same time, I am happy with the proposal of Hanne Jimenez de Mora. As an experienced top-level consultant, she will enrich the Board with her strategic management expertise across multiple industries. I value her experience as a successful entrepreneur and as a long-standing non-executive Board member of AB Volvo," said Paul Bulcke.
With the proposed nominee, the Nestlé Board will comprise 14 members, of which twelve are independent directors. Including the proposed new nominee, Nestlé has added ten new independent directors over the last five years. The continuous refreshment of the Board enhances its diversity and adds new perspectives and experience in the different areas relevant to Nestlé.
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Mark Schneider, Nestlé CEO, commented: "We saw strong progress in 2019, with key operating and financial metrics improving significantly for the second consecutive year. Organic growth accelerated, fueled by strong momentum in the United States and Purina PetCare globally. Profitability improved again and reached our guided range one year ahead of plan. Cash flow was strong, while underlying earnings per share and returns to shareholders reached record levels. In 2020, we expect continued organic sales growth improvement as we take further steps to decisively address underperforming businesses.
In 2019, we made significant progress in our portfolio transformation. We did what we said we would do and more. We are not done yet. We will respond to rapid changes in the industry and fast-evolving consumer preferences to position our portfolio for higher growth.
Nestlé will continue to focus on fast innovation. The launch of our premium Starbucks products, for example, has been a great success. We are very pleased with the speed of the product rollout and the positive response by consumers. The company is fully embracing the need for speed, as the rapid expansion of our new plant-based food and beverage offerings has shown. We are getting to market faster with must-have products.
Our shareholders are seeing reliable, sustainable and increasing cash returns even in turbulent times. A key driver is our sustainable dividend practice. We are proud to propose the 25th consecutive annual dividend increase to our shareholders this year.
We have also reaffirmed our sustainability leadership at a time when society is increasingly looking to business for solutions to the major environmental problems we are facing. In addition, we have made significant progress in making our workplace even more diverse and inclusive. New initiatives, such as our enhanced parental leave policy, reaffirm Nestlé’s status as an employer of choice around the world.
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Today, Swiss mineral water brand Henniez announced that its entire plastic bottle range is now made of 75% recycled PET plastic (rPET). Henniez has already been using 30% Swiss recycled PET since 2013 and has the clear ambition to move to 100% locally recycled PET. This will close the PET circular loop, as discarded PET bottles will be made into new Henniez recycled plastic bottles multiple times, without tapping into new oil resources.
The news comes three weeks after Nestlé committed to invest up to CHF 2 billion to lead the shift from virgin plastics to food-grade recycled plastics and to accelerate the development of innovative sustainable packaging solutions. The investment, along with the ongoing efforts to make packaging recyclable or reusable, will help Nestlé to use one third less virgin plastics by 2025."With 75% recycled plastic in all our Henniez plastic bottles, we are clearly committed to this highly efficient circular economy,” said Alessandro Rigoni, General Manager of Nestlé Waters Switzerland. “We are proud of our local recycling system PET Recycling Schweiz (PRS), one of the best in the world.” PRS has been in place for 30 years in Switzerland and boasts a PET recycling rate of 82%, without resorting to a bottle deposit scheme.
Henniez is an iconic Swiss brand, which celebrates its 115th anniversary this year. It was the first brand in Switzerland to launch mineral water in plastic bottles back in 1984. Unbreakable, light and yet resealable, the plastic bottle quickly revolutionized the local beverage trade. Notably, the lower weight of plastic bottles enabled the flight carrier Swissair to transport additional paying passengers.
Nestlé Health Science (NHSc) today announced that it will make a further equity investment of USD 200 million in Aimmune Therapeutics, a California-based biopharmaceutical company developing and commercializing treatment for potentially life-threatening food allergies.
NHSc first invested in Aimmune Therapeutics in 2016, and its total investment to date is USD 473 million.
This additional capital will strengthen Aimmune Therapeutics's financial position as it is preparing for the launch of PALFORZIA™, the first medication approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for food allergies in children and teens. NHSc expects this launch to change the landscape of food allergy treatment.
Investing in food allergy therapies is a natural extension of NHSc's current pediatric food allergy portfolio. This includes its Althéra, Alfaré and Alfamino products for babies and young children with Cow's Milk Protein Allergy and its investment in Before Brands, which makes SpoonfulOne, a nutrition-based early childhood food allergy-prevention product.
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Nestlé today announced that it has entered into an asset purchase agreement with Allergan to acquire the gastrointestinal medication Zenpep. This move aims to expand the company's medical nutrition business and complement its portfolio of therapeutic products.
Zenpep, available in the United States, is a medication for people who cannot digest food properly because their pancreas does not provide enough enzymes to break down fat, protein, and carbohydrates. Zenpep's 2018 net sales were USD 237 million.
"Nestlé's acquisition of Zenpep is a strategic decision that will enhance our growing medical nutrition portfolio," said Greg Behar, CEO of Nestlé Health Science. "This is a significant opportunity for our business in the United States to add a complementary product to our existing range of nutrition products that support food ingestion, digestion and absorption. We have extensive experience in Zenpep's therapeutic areas of digestive diseases through our medical nutrition business and will leverage those capabilities as we grow this new business."
The deal is expected to be finalized concurrent with the merger of Allergan and AbbVie. Financial details of this acquisition are not being disclosed.
Nestlé will take ownership of Zenpep upon closing the transaction, with customary transition support from the seller.
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Nestlé today announced a collaboration with Burcon and Merit, two key players in the development and production of high-quality plant proteins. This partnership will enable Nestlé to further accelerate the development of nutritious and great-tasting plant-based meat and dairy alternatives with a favorable environmental footprint.
The partnership combines Nestlé’s expertise in the development, production and commercialization of plant-based foods and beverages with Burcon’s proprietary plant protein extraction and purification technology, while leveraging Merit’s state-of-the-art plant protein production capabilities.
"Developing nutritious and great-tasting plant-based meat and dairy alternatives requires access to tasty, nutritious and sustainable raw materials as well as proprietary manufacturing technology," says Stefan Palzer, Nestlé Chief Technology Officer. "The partnership with Burcon and Merit will give us access to unique expertise and a new range of high-quality ingredients for plant-based food and beverages."
Globally, Nestlé has around 300 R&D scientists, engineers and product developers located in 8 R&D centers that are dedicated to the research and development of plant-based products. To complement its internal capabilities, the company also strategically collaborates with researchers, suppliers, start-ups and various other innovation partners.
Nestlé’s plant-based product range includes pea, soy- and wheat-based burger patties, sausages, mince meat, chicken filets and various prepared dishes. The company also developed pea and oat-based dairy alternatives, almond-, coconut- and oat-based creamers, plant-based coffee mixes as well as a range of non-dairy ice creams. It also recently announced its plans to launch vegan alternatives to cheese and bacon, designed to complement its existing plant-based burger patties.
The Global Alliance for YOUth has announced today that 10 million young people have been supported since joining forces at the World Economic Forum in Davos 2019. The Alliance, a business-driven movement of 20 international private companies, is passionate about building a better future for younger generations. Working together, the Alliance helps young people around the globe get the necessary skills to thrive in the world of work, today and tomorrow.
The Global Alliance for YOUth will support 15 million young people by 2022, helping them build employability skills for the future: Digital, Soft Skills, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), Career Advice and Entrepreneurship. This commitment represents an increase from the ambition of 6 million opportunities announced last year.
Taking part at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Laurent Freixe, Nestlé's CEO for Zone Americas, stressed the importance of working together to maximize impact: "With the Global Alliance for YOUth we are taking a fundamental step to mobilize society for youth employability. At Nestlé we are committed to this and therefore we have joined forces with our colleagues from the private sector to provide youth with the knowledge and skills needed for work in the 21st century."
The Global Alliance for YOUth is committed to developing a series of joint initiatives to give young people meaningful work experience. It will also mobilize employees to help youth prepare for work in the communities where they operate. To date, 20 multinational companies have joined the Alliance: The Adecco Group, BT, Cargill, CEMEX, Engie, EY, Facebook, Firmenich, Mastercard, Mercer, Microsoft, Nestlé, Nielsen, Publicis Groupe, SAP, Sodexo, Starbucks, Rockwell Automation, Vodafone and White & Case. The Alliance is proud to work with non-private sector partners such as the ILO and the World Bank through initiatives such as Decent Jobs for Youth and Solutions 4 Youth Employment.
Nestlé founded the regional Alliance for YOUth in Europe in 2014 with the purpose of helping prepare young people to enter the professional world. After its successful launch, the Alliance was expanded to the Pacific Alliance countries in 2017 (Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru) and the Mercosur countries in 2018 (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay).
Nestlé has today been recognized in the 2020 Bloomberg Gender Equality Index (GEI) for its transparency in gender reporting and advancing women's equality. This underscores Nestlé’s efforts to empower women across its value chain and to provide equal opportunities to all its employees.
The GEI reference index measures gender equality across five pillars: female leadership and talent pipeline, equal pay and gender pay parity, inclusive culture, sexual harassment policies and pro-women brand. Nestlé’s programs on diversity and inclusion continue to be industry-leading across the majority of these pillars.
"We are honored to be once again included in the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index. It is a recognition of the bold steps we are taking towards advancing gender balance and making Nestlé an even more inclusive place to work. Recently, we launched a new Global Parental Support Policy, recognizing that parental roles are no longer solely defined along gender lines. The policy extends parental leave for primary caregivers from 14 weeks previously to 18 weeks fully paid, establishing a minimum of four weeks for secondary caregivers," said Béatrice Guillaume-Grabisch, Head of Group Human Resources at Nestlé.
Nestlé's new Global Parental Support Policy builds on the company's efforts to create a more inclusive workplace. Last year, Nestlé laid out an action plan to increase the number of women in senior executive positions globally by 2022.
Gender balance is a key component of Nestlé’s approach to diversity and inclusion. It is an integral part of Nestlé's culture.
Nestlé has today been again commended for its climate action, achieving a place on global environmental impact non-profit CDP's prestigious ‘A List’ for climate change, based on the company’s climate reporting in 2019.
CDP's annual environmental disclosure and scoring process is widely recognized as the gold standard of corporate environmental transparency. The annual ‘A list’ names the world's businesses leading on environmental performance. Nestlé was recognized for its actions to cut emissions, mitigate climate risks and develop the low-carbon economy. Nestlé is one of a small number of high-performing companies out of thousands that were scored.
Magdi Batato, Executive Vice President, Head of Operations at Nestlé, said: "Nestlé is pleased to be on the CDP climate 'A list' again this year. This pays tribute to our leadership in climate change, which is one of the biggest threats we face as a society and to the sustainability of our business. Last year, we announced that we will accelerate action to tackle climate change and committed to zero net emissions by 2050. We will continue to step up our efforts and we call on others to embark on this journey with us."
Nestlé's 2050 net zero ambition builds on the company’s decade-long efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in its value chain. Plans to achieve this goal include restoring farmland and forests, increasing the use of renewable energy and reformulating products that have a better environmental footprint and contribute to a balanced diet.
As the company continues to step up its climate efforts, last week Nestlé announced it will invest up to CHF 2 billion to lead the shift from virgin plastics to food-grade recycled plastics and to accelerate the development of innovative sustainable packaging solutions.
Good news for barbecue fans who want to put some vegan treats on the grill this year: Nestlé is launching plant-based sausages in Europe and the United States that look, taste and cook like a sausage should.
In Europe, the soy-based Garden Gourmet Incredible Sausage will be available in Bratwurst and Chorizo styles. It will launch for retail starting in March in 11 European markets, including Austria, Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland. Soon after, version for restaurants and food service will be available to out of home customers.
The United States will see the pea protein-based Sweet Earth Sausage arrive on shelves beginning in April in three varieties including Habanero Cheddar, Asian Ginger Scallion and Chik’n Apple. A version for food service will be available as well. The company will also launch a range of plant-based deli meats, which will be available in the U.S. both in retail (pre-packaged) cases and from the deli counter.
"After the huge success of our plant-based burgers and grounds, we’re now adding another favorite. These plant-based sausages really deliver on flavor and texture," said Wayne England, head of Nestlé's food business. "Their juiciness and firm bite means you can cook and enjoy them any way you like, including grilling, roasting or pan-frying."
Nestlé today announced that it will invest up to CHF 2 billion to lead the shift from virgin plastics to food-grade recycled plastics and to accelerate the development of innovative sustainable packaging solutions.
Building on its 2018 commitment to make 100% of its packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025, Nestlé will reduce its use of virgin plastics by one third in the same period whilst working with others to advance the circular economy and endeavor to clean up plastic waste from oceans, lakes and rivers.
Food quality and safety are paramount, and packaging plays a major role in assuring this. Most plastics are difficult to recycle for food packaging, leading to a limited supply of food-grade recycled plastics. To create a market, Nestlé is therefore committed to sourcing up to 2 million metric tons of food-grade recycled plastics and allocating more than CHF 1.5 billion to pay a premium for these materials between now and 2025. Nestlé will seek operational efficiencies to keep this initiative earnings neutral.
Packaging innovation, including new materials, refill systems and recycling solutions, is another key challenge on the path towards a waste-free future. In addition to its significant inhouse research through the Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences, the company will launch a CHF 250 million sustainable packaging venture fund to invest in start-up companies that focus on these areas.
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Nestlé and Starbucks today unveiled a new range of Starbucks coffee products that will be available in grocery stores in the U.S. starting February 2020.
The new line-up includes Cold Brew concentrate, Fresh Brew coffee, as well as blends of Starbucks coffee with essential vitamins and golden turmeric – among others.
These new innovations strengthen Starbucks at-home coffee offering, providing consumers new ways to enjoy Starbucks products in the comfort of their home.
These products build upon the portfolio of innovation of the global coffee alliance, formed in August 2018 to create a revolutionary coffee experience for consumers. In 2019, Nestlé launched four coffee platforms worldwide under the Starbucks brand, including Starbucks Creamers in the U.S.
Nestlé today announced it has launched Roastelier, a compact coffee-roasting solution that will allow baristas to unlock and simplify the art of roasting in the shop. Passionate coffee consumers will now be able to experience the roasting process in their neighborhood café and will get to taste customized coffee blends made with freshly roasted beans. Thanks to Roastelier, passionate baristas are able to provide an authentic and complete coffee experience, including roasting, allowing for ultimate freshness.
The Roastelier solution includes a range of top grade arabica coffees sourced from select coffee growing regions around the world. These coffees are carefully assessed for many quality parameters within Nestlé’s factories and are then taken through the first step of roasting using their proprietary knowledge and equipment setup – referred to as ‘Prime Roast' – to ensure consistently good results batch after batch.
This launch highlights Nestlé’s leadership in coffee innovation within the broad coffee category, to further create customer value and enrich consumers’ experiences.
Reinhold Jakobi, Head of Nestlé Professional Strategic Business Unit, Nestlé, said: "We have developed Roastelier in less than twelve months, capitalizing on our R&D expertise in beverage system technologies. With this artisanal on-site roasting solution, baristas can now offer hassle-free, freshly roasted coffee, with hundreds of personalized blends at their fingertips, to cater to the increasing diversity of consumer tastes and desires. This significantly enhances both authenticity and 'coffee cred' at their outlets. The novel solution will help passionate baristas become master roasters."
After Ruby and Green Tea Matcha, Nestlé has unveiled the latest edition of its most iconic confectionery brand: the new KitKat Gold.
KitKat Gold offers a tasty combination of crispy wafer and smooth milk chocolate, topped with creamy white chocolate with sweet caramel notes.
The new four-finger treat will launch in major retailers across Europe and selected other countries throughout 2020. It is already available in Russia and will arrive in the UK & Ireland very soon.
A version of KitKat Gold was introduced in Australia and New Zealand in 2018 as a limited edition and was so popular it was added to the permanent range.
Alexander von Maillot, Global Head of Confectionery at Nestlé, said: "People are constantly looking for new taste sensations when they treat themselves and others. They also want chocolate that is visually appealing, so they can share it with friends and on social media. KitKat Gold has that special something, allowing consumers to have a break in style!"
KitKat Gold uses UTZ-certified cocoa beans sourced as part of the Nestlé Cocoa Plan. It has no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.
From its origins in the United Kingdom in 1935, KitKat has grown in popularity across the globe. Today, the iconic brand is present in more than 80 countries.
Alexander von Maillot added: "KitKat Gold is further proof of our commitment to our leading international confectionery brand. We have introduced many innovative flavors and premium products in recent years, and there is more to come!"
Nestlé S.A. today announced that it has completed its 20 billion share buyback program initiated on July 4, 2017. Since July 4, 2017, Nestlé has repurchased 225,186,059 of its shares for a total of CHF 20 billion at an average purchase price per share of CHF 88.82.
A total of 136,160,000 repurchased shares were cancelled by the Annual General Meetings held on April 12, 2018 and on April 11, 2019. As a result, the share capital of Nestlé S.A. was reduced to currently CHF 297,600,000. The Annual General Meeting 2020 of Nestlé S.A. will decide upon the cancellation of the remaining 89,026,059 repurchased shares.
Nestlé S.A. will start a new share buyback program of up to CHF 20 billion as announced on October 17, 2019. Nestlé plans to commence repurchases on or after January 3, 2020. The new share buyback program shall be completed by the end of December 2022. Concurrently with this press release, Nestlé has published the details of the program in a buyback notice. The volume of monthly share buybacks will depend on market conditions. Should any extraordinary dividend payments or sizeable acquisitions take place during this period, the amount of the share buyback will be reduced accordingly.
Nestlé today announced that it has agreed to sell a 60% stake of Herta to Casa Tarradellas. Nestlé and Casa Tarradellas will create a joint venture for Herta with their respective stakes of 40% and 60%.
The joint venture includes Herta charcuterie (cold cuts and meat-based products) available in six European countries, as well as the Herta dough business in France and Belgium. It will be established upon finalization of employee consultations where required.
Nestlé will retain and develop its existing Herta vegetarian business, in line with its increased focus on plant-based offerings. Nestlé offers a wide range of plant-based products, including through Garden Gourmet in Europe and Sweet Earth in the U.S.
The Herta charcuterie and dough business had sales of EUR 667 million in 2018 and has been valued at EUR 690 million. Closing is anticipated to take place in the first half of 2020.
The joint venture will build on the brand’s significant presence and leadership position in several European countries. It will benefit from the complementary strengths and innovation expertise of both parties in order to continue the successful development of Herta in Europe.
Marco Settembri, Executive Vice President, Chief Executive Officer Zone Europe, Middle East and North Africa, Nestlé, said: "The Herta business has delivered strong performance over the past years and is well-positioned for future growth. We are happy to have Casa Tarradellas as our partner, a family-run business that is a market leader in Spain for pizza, fresh dough and charcuterie. Both companies have a true passion for quality and innovation and are proud to be in a joint venture to provide our consumers with great ingredients for their daily meals."
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