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New Image sees return to annual profit on rising sales

New Image sees return to annual profit on rising sales, eyes Vietnam, chairman says

Nov. 29 (BusinessDesk) - New Image Group, which makes colostrum-based health tonics, expects a big turnaround in full-year earnings with sales tipped to exceed $100 million, according to chairman Graeme Clegg.

The Auckland-based company sees pretax profit of between $12 million and $14 million in the year ending June 30, 2013, turning from a pretax loss of $4.8 million in 2012 and at least two-and-a-half times the pre-tax profit of $4.7 million in 2011, Clegg told shareholders in Auckland today.

"I can confirm that the new financial year has started strongly and we are well ahead of the previous year," Clegg said in speech notes published on the NZX. "However, as we know from experience, market conditions in our industry can change - and quickly."

Last month New Image flagged annual revenue would exceed $100 million after turning a pretax profit of $3 million in the three months ended Sept. 30.

Clegg, who recently agreed to buy the 10.1 percent stake held by HWM (NZ), formerly known as Huljich Wealth Management, said the company will be looking at new opportunities and is mulling whether to extend its direct selling into Vietnam.

New Image has increased its exposure to Asia as developing nations' appetite for dairy protein grows, and has previously singled out Malaysia as a growth target.

Clegg paid tribute to Malaysia-based director and Asia Pacific vice president NH Chua, who was paid out $1.3 million in compensation after an aborted listing in Asia. Chua was in line to receive a 5 percent shareholding if the listing had gone ahead.

The shares were unchanged at 30 cents, and have climbed 45 percent this year.


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