Oatly barista blend

Oatly said said it believed it would post positive adjusted EBITDA by 2024

Shares in Oatly have surged thanks to better-than-expected annual figures, promises of a future profit and $425m of new financing secured by the plant-based group.

CEO Toni Petersson said the Swedish group was ”well-positioned to start playing offence in 2023”.

Revenues in the final quarter of 2022 jumped 13.9% (stripping out currency translation) to $211.7m as price rises kicked in and volumes rose 10% thanks to a recovery in Asia as Covid restrictions eased.

It pushed full-year figures up 20.1% to $772.2m on volume growth of 19.1%.

However, the group posted an EBITDA loss for the year of $347.4m, compared with £186.5m in 2021, while pre-tax losses ballooned from $215m to $397.4m.

Oatly gave a bullish outlook for 2023, forecasting revenue growth of 23% to 28% and improving gross margins, estimated to reach the high-20% in the fourth quarter.

As a result of this progress, the group said it believed it would post positive adjusted EBITDA by 2024.

Oatly also revaled it had received commitments for $425m of capital from investors and agreed terms with lenders to amend its revolving credit facility.

Petersson said the company took “bold action” in 2022 to strengthen the management team, transition the supply chain to a more asset-light model and simplified the cost structure.

“Our supply chain is back on firmer footing, we have clear line of sight to reaching profitability, and we have the liquidity needed to fully fund our growth investments and reach financial self-sufficiency,” he added.

“Therefore, we believe we are well-positioned to start playing offence in 2023.

“Our teams will be focused on fully capturing the underlying global demand for our products while continuously improving our supply chain. We expect this focus to enable us to move along our path to profitability, set up fiscal 2024 for positive adjusted EBITDA, and drive sustainable, long-term shareholder value creation.”

Oatly faced a number of challenges in 2022, including production issues in the Americas, currency headwinds and Covid restrictions in China. It caused the group to disappoint markets as it missed quarterly revenue expectations and saw losses spiral higher.

Oatly outlined a plan in November to reduce its workforce as it sought to cut costs and also agreed a deal, in January, to sell mannufacturing capacity in US factories to co-packer Ya Ya Foods as part of a long-term strategic hybrid model.

Shares in Oatly jumped 11.2% to $2.27 as markets in the US opened today. It puts the stock up more than 13% in the year to date, but it still remains more than 50% lower over the past year and a long way off the post-IPO high of $29 a share.