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Johannesburg - Tiger Brands pointed to its recently developed group strategy as it reported a seven percent increase in turnover to R16.4 billion for six months ending 31 March, with domestic operations contributing strongly to the group's revenue base.

Tiger Brands embarked on comprehensive strategic review in 2016, which has resulted in the design of a new operating model to drive its growth objectives, to be implemented in the new financial year. The company's new strategy is focused on delivering sustainable profitable growth to be driven through growing the portfolio; creating a cost conscious culture and an advantaged integrated supply chain; and an organisation structure designed for exceptional delivery.

The JSE-listed manufacturer of consumer brands said the domestic business proved resilient, and was well placed to implement the newly developed group strategy. Turnover in the domestic business increased by eight percent to R14.3 billion, compared to R13.2 billion in 2016, driven primarily by the grains division.

But the volumes in the domestic business declined by four percent due, in part, to Easter volumes being included in the comparative period. Chief executive Lawrence Mac Dougall said because Tiger Brands operates in an intensely competitive industry, increasing market share against well-funded and established participants requires the full commitment of an experienced and expert team working towards a clear strategy.

Mac Dougall said he was encouraged by the results, which he believes reflected the quality of the group's brands. "The immediate priority is to rejuvenate the domestic business to deliver sustainable, profitable growth. Importantly, Africa and other emerging markets remain a key part of our growth strategy," Mac Dougall said.

"We have refined our approach to our African strategy by exiting non-core categories in Kenya and Ethiopia. "Looking ahead, we will prioritise core category opportunities based on market attractiveness, strategic fit and our right to win. Similarly, the role of associates will be reviewed continuously."

The group's overall operating performance was, however, negatively impacted by the underperformance of its exports and international businesses. Headline earnings per share (HEPS) from continuing operations increased by seven percent to 1,036 cents. The group declared an interim dividend of 378 cents.