(Adds quotes, details)
SAO PAULO, Aug 1 (Reuters) - Brazilian food processor BRF SA does not expect to make large acquisitions in the near term, executives said on Friday, although the company may look at small regional partnerships to boost profits.
BRF, the world’s largest chicken exporter, completed its acquisition of Federal Foods in Abu Dhabi this year and is now more interested in looking at joint ventures with local players as a way to enter new markets.
“We aren’t worried about making big acquisitions at this time,” Chairman Abilio Diniz said on an earnings call, adding he prefers to focus on simplifying the company’s business model and achieving solid growth.
Chief Executive Officer Claudio Galeazzi reiterated the point, saying the company is not looking at any “relevant” takeovers abroad. “We are looking at smaller companies that could help anchor us in some regions,” he said.
BRF’s strategy contrasts with that of Brazilian meatpacker JBS SA, which said on Monday it would buy Tyson Food Inc’s Mexican and Brazilian poultry businesses.
BRF reported a 28 percent increase in second-quarter profit on Thursday, which it attributed to streamlining operations and decreasing sales volumes in less-promising foreign markets.
The company’s shares rose 3 percent in early Sao Paulo trading on Friday. It has said the benefits of reorganizing its brands abroad will be seen in financial results in the second half of the year.
Galeazzi said BRF plans to take advantage of low grain prices to fill its stocks, which can store feed supply for three to four months. Local corn prices in Brazil recently hit a four-year low due to abundant supplies.
Diniz said neighboring Argentina is a market BRF “would not abandon in the short or long term,” and that it has new staff there to oversee its “long-abandoned” Paty trademark.
“Our Argentine CEO is also willing to develop other nearby markets, like Chile,” Diniz said. (Reporting by Caroline Stauffer and Fabiola Gomes; Editing by Peter Galloway)