Choco Pie maker Orion reports 25-percent rise in net profit

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Choco Pie maker Orion reports 25-percent rise in net profit

 Orion products, including its iconic Choco Pie snack. [ORION]

Orion products, including its iconic Choco Pie snack. [ORION]

 
Choco Pies, it seems, are recession-proof.
 
Orion, the company behind the chocolate marshmallow delight, reported a preliminary 25-percent rise in net profit last year to 275.6 billion won ($247.1 million). 
 
Net profit in the fourth quarter declined 5.2 percent on year to 57.93 billion won on a revenue that inched up 3.9 percent to 578.12 billion won.
 
The company recorded “strong double-digit growth in overseas corporations like in China, Vietnam and Russia amid uncertainties caused by Covid-19,” Orion said in a statement.
 
Revenues in China broke 1 trillion won for the first time since tension started building between Korea and that country in 2017.  
 
The company’s iconic Choco Pie and Oh Gamja potato snack led the growth.  
 
Domestic market also fared well, with a 5-percent growth in revenue to 769.2 billion won on “strict data-based management” and “aggressive release of new products.”
 
The company introduced more than 40 types of releases, including the chocolate churros-flavored Turtle chips.
 
It noted Covid-19 has raised interests in healthier foods and convenient meal replacements and that it responded by releasing granola. Growth in the Vietnamese market was led by rice snacks, while new Choco Pie flavors led the growth in Russia.
 
The company is downplaying the extraordinary power of the Choco Pie and is instead emphasizing the “aggressive release of new products.” Orion “plans to maintain the growth through release of new products and raise profitability through entrance to the Indian market and successful execution of new businesses like bio.”
 
The company is planning to complete the construction of production facilities in India and start sales in the first half of this year.
 
BY JIN MIN-JI   [jin.minji@joongang.co.kr]
 
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