Thursday 26th May 2011
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Fishing company Sanford has maintained its interim dividend at nine cents a share after reporting sharply higher earnings from a business that includes the Pacifica Seafoods mussels business purchased last November.
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation rose to $26 million in the six months to March 31, from $10 million in the same period last year. The after-tax profit of $13.1m compared to $5.3m last year.
Revenue was up 23 percent to $228m, and excluding Pacifica the rise was 17 percent.
The company is paying a nine cent a share interim dividend on June 15, unchanged from last year.
"Although the increase in profitability in the last six months is pleasing the board is focused on reducing the debt level following the Pacifica Seafoods purchase on November 30, 2010," the company said.
While releasing the bumper profit, the company took time out to pay tribute to chairman Bruce Cole who died on May 11 after a short illness. Jeff Todd was elected as chairman today and the company said a new director appointment will be made in the near future.
"Prices over the period have improved for most species as seafood follows the worldwide increase in commodity prices," the company said.
The company is forecasting a further improvement in profitability from higher prices despite the impact of high fuel prices and the high New Zealand dollar.
"Good progress has been achieved in moving to a level of profitability that can be justified at an exchange rate between 70 and 75 cents to the US dollar. We must though, continue our focus on cost control, production efficiency and maximising market returns," the company said.
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