AVI’s (AVI) revenue for the six months ended December was up 10.7% to R4.887 billion‚ the company said on Tuesday.
The company also advised that consolidated headline earnings per share for the continuing operations for the six months ended December 2012 are expected to increase by between 6% and 9% over the comparable period in the prior year.
The company said with the exception of I&J‚ all of the group´s business units performed solidly in a tough trading environment characterised by constrained consumer spending and increasing competition in some categories. Spitz continued to produce pleasing growth.
I&J had an unexpectedly difficult semester compared to the first half of last year with a number of material factors constraining profitability.
Sales volumes declined by 14% due largely to low fishing fleet availability caused by planned and unplanned vessel maintenance and poor catch rates on a comparable basis‚ while a material increase in fuel costs for the fishing fleet following the termination of the supply of our cheaper marine fuel blend in the second half of the last financial year‚ and lower foreign exchange gains than registered in the prior period‚ impacted on profits.
Consolidated profit margins have largely been maintained despite pressure from a weaker Rand on imports and the decrease in I&J´s profit‚ with several categories benefitting from volume leverage; notably creamer‚ biscuits and footwear & apparel.
Green Cross has performed in line with expectations and contributed to strong volume growth in fashion brands‚ the company said.
The company said that other factors impacting on the results for the first semester were the equity earnings from I&J´s joint venture with Simplot Australia. which were materially lower due to tough retail trading conditions in Australia combined with less benefit from foreign exchange movements.
Net finance charges increased in line with higher debt levels following the acquisition of Green Cross and the special dividend of 180 cents per share paid in October 2012 and the effective tax rate decreased as the prior period charge included R24‚4 million of Secondary Tax on Companies which fell away with the move to Withholding Tax on Dividends.
In addition‚ theweighted average number of shares in issue during the period was 2‚7% higher than in the same period last year due to the issue of new shares in terms of the group´s various share incentive schemes‚ particularly the Black Staff Empowerment Scheme which reached its first normal vesting date in January 2012.
It added that consolidated earnings per share for the continuing operations for the six months ended December 2012‚ including capital gains and losses on the disposal of assets‚ are expected to increase by between 6% and 9% over the comparable period in the prior year.
Consolidated earnings per share for the total operations of the Group for the six months ended December 2012‚ including capital gains and losses on the disposal of assets‚ are expected to increase by between 10% and 13% over the comparable period in the prior year.
I&J´s catch rates improved in the latter part of the period under review and should these catch rates be sustained‚ the increased volumes‚ together with the benefit of the weaker Rand on export sales‚ should support a materially improved second half for I&J.
AVI’s will release its interim results on 11 March 2013. - I-Net Bridge