Something that in the past would seem as obvious as using wooden barrels for brewing after brewing, today is emerging as a form of differentiation and innovation. In addition to contributing to the complexity of aromas and flavors from the wood, this practice allows the action of certain yeasts and bacteria naturally lodged in the pores of the wood and which eventually leads to a new fermentation process. Refermentation in the bottle itself – primarily just a practice to promote carbonation – if performed with unconventional yeasts, may also contribute to the incorporation of relevant aromatic compounds into the organoleptic quality of the beverage.
Despite this effort, the company suffered a sharp cash reduction in the first six months of the crop due to debt repayment in July. The expectation, however, is to resume cash generation with its more robust sugar and ethanol inventories this year, notes Paulo Prignolato, CFO and Investor Relations Officer.
The company has covenants that force it to reach the end of each crop with a leverage of 3.5 times. The index for the last quarter was 3.8 times. But, according to Prignolato, the “medium-term” goal is to reduce that ratio to 2.5 times.
In addition to betting on cash generation, the company says it also has the “ability to roll over debt and alert to the diversification of resources,” said the executive. Asked, Prignolato rated the agribusiness bond and receivables (CRAs) markets as “interesting” as alternative sources of financing.
Ultrapar, the holding company responsible for Ipiranga, Ultragaz, Ultracargo, Oxiteno and Extrafarma, has long been frustrating investors’ expectations. Calvary began in the first quarter of 2018. Since then, the company has reported results below market expectations.
The balance of this succession of bad news is expressed in the market value of the company. According to the consulting firm Economica, the holding company, which was worth R $ 40.7 billion at the end of 2017, saw its capitalization plummet to just over R $ 17 billion in mid-August this year, following the release of the second quarter balance sheet.