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South Port beats guidance, earnings in line with 2018 record

Monday 22nd July 2019

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South Port New Zealand says it will report flat annual earnings, beating guidance for a 10 percent decline, as strong cargo flows late in the season gave profit an extra push. 

The Bluff-based company said net profit in 12 months ended June 30 was similar to the record $9.66 million reported a year earlier. The country's southern-most port had previously expected earnings of between $8.6 million and $8.9 million due to the cost of updating assets near the end of their life. 

South Port today said "strong late season cargo flows" underpinned earnings, and it will report "a better than expected result". 

About a third of the port's cargo comes from the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter, which formally re-opened its fourth potline in December after a six-year break. 

Environment Southland owns about 66 percent of the company. In April, the council's South Port sub-committee was told the company has a positive outlook despite the lower guidance, due to the additional cargoes from Mataura Valley Milk and an MDF product, the resumption of smelter's fourth potline, and the return of frozen product from Alliance Group. 

The port operator has previously said it will maintain its dividend at 26 cents per share on the lower earnings guidance. 

The shares last traded at $6.80 and have increased 3 percent so far this year, lagging behind the 19 percent increase on the S&P/NZX All Index over the same period. 

(BusinessDesk)

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