Seed World

Corteva Agriscience Hosts Inaugural Investor Day

Corteva Agriscience at its investor day in New York City, outlined its plans to become a global pure-play agriculture company following its intended separation from DowDuPont on June 1, 2019. The sessions were led by future Chief Executive Officer, James C. Collins, Jr.

As part of the DowDuPont Investor Day, Collins and other members of the Corteva Agriscience senior leadership team provided a detailed view of the company’s strategy to deliver growth and shareholder value by leveraging its industry-leading innovation engine to successfully launch new products targeted to famer needs, optimizing its organizational structure and go-to-market strategy, and maximizing return on invested capital through discipline and productivity.

“We are pleased to share with the investment community an in-depth look at our growth strategy and the significant progress we have made in preparing the company to compete successfully and become the independent global industry leader we envision,” says Collins. “We have positioned Corteva Agriscience to capitalize on its unique strengths, including our ability to offer farmers complete solutions, based on the most balanced and diverse portfolio across seed, crop protection, and digital, as well as our geographic scale, leading market positions, and unique route to market capabilities. Through disciplined, customer-focused execution we will build on our competitive advantages, provide our customers with the best, most sustainable solutions and increase returns for our shareholders.”

Future Chief Financial Officer Greg Friedman provided an overview of the financial profile and the company’s path to driving shareholder value-creation. Commenting on the company’s plans, Friedman says, “We expect to deliver sales growth above the market, led by new product launches from our industry-leading pipeline. We plan to drive margin expansion and above-market growth on the bottom line as well through a continued focus on cost synergy delivery, cost-competitiveness and enhanced product mix, all while maintaining a relentless focus on ROIC and shareholder returns.”

Friedman outlined how the company plans to align its financial policy to deliver strong returns including through:

  • Commitment to maintain an A- category credit profile: Maintain financial flexibility to support industry leading business model;
  • Investment in growth: Committed to growing cash flow consistently while investing in innovation;
  • Competitive dividend policy: In line with peers and increases over time as earnings and free cash flow improves; payout ratio of approximately 25-35 percent of net income; and
  • Share repurchase: Committed to return excess cash to shareholders.

Additional members of the Corteva management team provided an overview on the company’s strategic path and progress including:

  • Executive Vice President of Business Platforms, Rajan Gajaria, outlined the company’s business strategy to leverage its robust, combined capabilities, pipeline, and scale to drive above market sales growth while delivering on cost synergies and enhancing efficiency to grow the company’s bottom line through a focused and disciplined approach to capital and resource allocation.
  • Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, Tim Glenn, provided insights into the company’s plans to implement its business strategy at the regional level, including how Corteva Agriscience will build on its market-leading positions, deep customer relationships and unique route to market to maximize customer choice and value and drive growth.
  • Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Neal Gutterson, shared the company’s disciplined approach to innovation and focus on aligning R&D investments with customer needs while leveraging its global capabilities to deliver local expertise and solutions, innovating faster, smarter and with a constant focus on the farmer and sustainability.

The Investor Day presentations outlined the company’s five priorities for shareholder value creation, including:

  1. Instill a strong, performance-based, inclusive, customer-centric culture that increases accountability while driving a focus on returns; demonstrates the company’s commitment to its customers; and seeks to do things better, safer, and healthier than its competitors.
  2. Drive disciplined capital allocation with a strong focus on ROIC, including rigorously reviewing all R&D and capital expenditures based on expected returns; actively managing the portfolio to enhance the business platforms for higher returns; and improving working capital productivity.
  3. Develop innovative solutions that improve farmer productivity and global food security, continuing the company’s leading innovation approach in seeds and crop protection; and expanding its portfolio of solutions globally to include advanced digital technology offerings.
  4. Attain a best-in-class cost structure by driving productivity and discipline based on industry benchmarks and affordability; improving and digitizing the company’s technology systems; enriching product mix and expanding profit margins.
  5. Deliver above-market growth through the richest new product pipeline in the industry and a best-in-class route to market. This includes successfully launching 21 new products over the next five years; building the company’s multi-channel, multi-brand sales organization; and continuing to deepen customer relationships through the company’s unique direct routes to market.