Gross profit totalled R$5.2 billion (US$1.42 billion) in the first quarter, +16.5% higher year-on-year, with gross margin increasing from 11.8% to 13%. Ebitda stood at R$2.8 billion (US$766 million), up +30.3%, with Ebitda margin increasing from 5.7% to 7%. According to the Company’s report, JBS earned R$506 million (US$138.5 million), after recording a loss of R$ 451 million (US$123.4 million) in the previous months.
JBS Brazil, which includes its leather operations, posted a net revenue of R$5,919.9 million (US$1.62 billion) in the quarter, down -4.7% year-on-year and attributed to “a reduction in volumes as a consequence of the sale of JBS assets in Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay”. The Company says its leather operations are “signalling improvements and the outlook for this segment is positive”. Considering only beef operations in Brazil, revenue increased +5.9%, with the number of animals processed growing +7% compared with the first quarter of 2017.
In North America, JBS beef operations grew both in volume and revenues in the domestic and export markets, while in Australia beef operations “improved in relation to the previous year, although they continue to be impacted by a lower supply of cattle, seasonally intensified in the first quarter of the year due to rain, which impacts delivery of cattle in the processing facilities”.
The Company’s short-term debt in relation to total debt is reported to have reduced from 31% in the first quarter of 2017 to 23%, of which 75% are trade finance credit lines related to exports from JBS’ Brazilian businesses.