Sodexho Alliance, the French contract catering company, is maintaining its full-year earnings target, despite difficulties caused by the economic slowdown. Sodexho expects to make a net profit of E210 million for the full year.
Corporate demand for catering services has slowed significantly, leaving catering companies to battle it out for the remaining contracts. Sodexho has gone head to head with Compass in the UK, competing for contracts in hospitals, schools and sporting events.
Last year Sodexho was growing, acquiring other businesses along the way, including US-based Wood Dining Services and French caterer Sogeres, as well as the outstanding shares in US affiliate Sodexho Marriott Services.
However, the company was then hit by what it described as the most severe global slowdown in 50 years. It has since been forced to scale down its business and cut jobs.
Despite this, Sodexho is confident that it will achieve its targets. The company’s results came in at the higher end of expectations for H1. Net profit was E128 million, compared to E90 million the previous year. Revenues were up 10% to E6.6 billion, compared to E6.0 billion in 2001.