News Release

2008.2.6Financial and Performance Review for the Third Quarter of the Year Ending March 2008

(Note) Figures shown have been rounded down to the nearest million yen.

Our financial and performance review for the third quarter of the year ending March 2008 was announced on Wednesday, February 6 at the Tokyo Stock Exchange and Osaka Securities Exchange Press Clubs. An outline of the announcement is presented below.

Consolidated results for the Third Quarter of the Year Ending March 2008
(April 1 to December 31, 2007)

Operating results (consolidated progress)

(%) is in comparison to the previous year

  Sales Operating income Ordinary income Net income Net income
per share
(yen)
(millions of yen) (%) (millions of yen) (%) (millions of yen) (%) (millions of yen) (%)
Third quarter of
the year ending
March 2008
157,691 13.7 6,115 2.6 5,569 1.5 3,391 17.4 39.45
Third quarter of
the year ending
March 2007
138,722 6.1 5,958 (20.7) 5,485 (23.2) 2,887 (21.4) 33.19
Year ending
March 2007
184,910 - 7,095 - 6,498 - 3,259 37.57

The domestic economy in Japan during the third quarter of the year ending March 2008 grew steadily as a whole, but the outlook became more uncertain due to concerns about high oil prices and the U.S. subprime loan crisis, among other matters.
The food industry, to which we belong, faced ongoing harsh business conditions, including growing distrust of food safety as a result of a series of revelations of falsely labeled foods, in addition to high raw material prices.
In such an environment, our group was engaged in the protection of "safety, product quality and environmental integrity" as the top priorities of management, and committed to measures focused on the enhancement of our core businesses through selection and focusing, promotion of cost reduction and acceleration of our overseas development. In particular, our overseas operations recorded substantial growth in both sales and profits partly thanks to the expansion of the scale of operations and the impact of the exchange rate.
Consequently, in the third quarter of the year ending March 2008, we achieved sales of 157,691 million yen (an increase of 13.7% over the previous year), an operating income of 6,115 million yen (an increase of 2.6% over the previous year), ordinary income of 5,569 million yen (an increase of 1.5% over the previous year), and a net profit for the quarter of 3,391 million yen (an increase of 17.4% over the previous year).

The overview by segment is as follows.

<Oils and Fats Processing Business>
Domestically, the sales of specialty products such as hard butters for chocolate and functional oils and fats grew steadily, and fats for frying also saw an increase in sales quantity. Overseas, specialty products such as hard butters for chocolate did well, especially in the U.S.A. and European markets. While ensuring a profit was a challenge in the domestic market owing to the high raw material prices, our operations in the U.S.A. and European markets registered significant increases in profit.
Through its efforts, this business group achieved sales of 61,784 million yen (an increase of 24.2% over the previous year) and an operating income of 2,810 million yen (an increase of 11.2% over the previous year).

<Confectionery and Baking Ingredients Business>
In the Japanese market, various types of ingredient chocolate and cream products did well, and the sales of margarines and fillings increased thanks to the good performance of various new products. The sales of imported confectionery and baking ingredients also experienced steady growth. Overseas, our group company in Singapore recorded a particularly good result with increases in both sales and profit.
Through its efforts, this business group achieved sales of 67,113 million yen (an increase of 12.2% over the previous year) and an operating income of 4,382 million yen (an increase of 12.8% over the previous year).

<Soy Protein Business>
Soy protein ingredients, soy milk and mail order sales of soybean-related products faced severe business conditions such as increases in raw material prices, stagnant demand and intensified competition between companies, despite our efforts to expand sales through measures such as the development and release of new products and the reduction of costs. Through its efforts, this business group achieved a sales volume of 28,793 million yen (a decrease of 1.2% over the previous year) and recorded an operating loss of 1,077 million yen (an operating loss of 456 million yen was achieved in the previous year).

Predictions for Consolidated Results for the Year Ending March 2008 (April 1, 2007 to March 31, 2008)
At this point, we have not made any amendment to the predictions for the results for the whole year released on November 8, 2007.

(Note) The forecasts above have been made based on the information available at the time of this announcement, and the actual results may differ from these forecasts due to various factors.

End of report

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