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A2 Corp. contemplates move to Australia

Monday 22nd December 2008

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A2 Corp., the company that owns and licenses techniques to identify milk with a protein variant claimed to have health benefits, may relocate to Australia, its fastest-growing market.

First-half sales in Australia, where it has a joint venture with Freedom Nutritional Products, soared 260% to A$7.8 million, the company said last month. The gain wasn't enough to lift the company into profit, and it posted a loss in the six months ended September 30 of $1.99 million, from a loss of $2.07 million a year earlier.

A2 began a strategic review after the first-half results which will include a proposal to move the head office to Australia, chairman Cliff Cook said. The move will "ensure management focus on this key market," he said.

Shares of ATM trade infrequently on the NZAX market and were last at 10 cents on Dec. 19. ATM has fallen 55% this year, lagging behind a 30% decline in the NZAX. Freedom Nutritional, which makes and distributes soy and other beverages, last traded on the ASX at 40 Australian cents and has fallen 27% in the past six months.

In September, A2 raised $19.6 million selling shares to pay debt and fund its expansion, more than the $11.3 million initially targeted.

By Jonathan Underhill

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