Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Seeka hikes interim dividend

Seeka hikes interim dividend as first-half profit almost doubles

By Paul McBeth

Aug. 26 (BusinessDesk) - Seeka Kiwifruit Industries hiked its interim dividend to shareholders as the first harvest from its recent Australian acquisition and record crops contributed to a first-half profit that almost doubled.

Net profit rose to $7.1 million, or 43 cents per share, in the six months ended June 30 from $3.7 million, or 24 cents, a year earlier, the Te Puke-based company said in a statement. Revenue climbed 39 percent to $134.2 million, and the board declared an interim dividend of 10 cents per share, payable on Sept. 29 to shareholders on the register on Sept. 22. That's up from 9 cents a share a year earlier.

The increased profit reflected "the successful completion of the avocado season, the commencement of harvest and selling of our Australian-grown produce and record kiwifruit volumes in New Zealand," Seeka said in commentary accompanying the result. "Higher New Zealand kiwifruit volumes have led to better earnings, but required significant investment."

Seeka foreshadowed the result in June when it said it handled record kiwifruit volumes in the latest packing season and signalled the benefits of from its purchase of Australia's Bunbartha Fruit Packers for A$22 million would start to show up. The shares climbed 6.2 percent to $4.78, having already gained 31 percent this year.

The company's Australian unit delivered $1.5 million of earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisaton on revenue of $13.3 million, while its New Zealand orchards delivered a 13 percent gain in ebitda to $5.1 million on a 15 percent increase in revenue to $37.7 million.

Seeka's post-harvest business, which coordinates the local harvest, packing, coolstore and logistics for its growers, lifted earnings 25 percent to $13.8 million on a 30 percent gain in revenue to $78 million. The retail services division posted flat ebitda of $500,000 on a 24 percent increase in sales to $5.1 million.

The company wrote down the value of its 32 percent stake in UPNZ, which imports plastic pockets and distributes them to the local kiwifruit industry, by $340,000 due to the discovery of grease deposits on several packs destined for China that prompted fruit marketing agency Zespri International to put a hold on fruit in that packaging until it was cleared of food safety issues.

Seeka supplied Zespri with 212,153 trays in those pockets, 12 of which were contaminated with the grease, and Zespri has lodged a claim against the grower "for all the costs of checking that product including all fruit loss, irrespective of cause," the company said.

The kiwifruit grower is disputing the claim, but has taken a provision in its accounts, though didn't disclose the value saying it was commercially sensitive while the dispute was in progress.

Seeka will provide annual earnings guidance at an update in October when it said it will have greater certainty over fruit quality, kiwifruit selling prices, the completion of Australian fruit sales, and any final resolution to a fire insurance claim.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Auckland Port Move: Cabinet Ministers Deliberate On Report

Cabinet ministers now have a copy of a report urging the government to move the Auckland port up north, but say no final decisions have been made. More>>


Toxicology Tests Planned: Dead Rats Washed Up On Beaches

As many as 600 rats washed up on Westport's North Beach over the weekend to the horror of locals. DOC said they may have been killed by a recent 1080 poison drop 140km away and washed down the Buller River after heavy rain battered the coast. More>>


Transition To Low Carbon: Mineral And Petroleum Resource Strategy

Responsibly Delivering Value – A Minerals and Petroleum Strategy for Aotearoa New Zealand: 2019-2029 has been developed to provide the direction for the sector in the transition to a low carbon and productive, sustainable and inclusive economy. More>>


MethaneSAT: Methane Satellite Mission Control In New Zealand

Mission Control for an international space mission to help tackle climate change will be based in New Zealand, with the Government putting $26 million towards the state-of-the-art satellite...More>>


Real Estate: Late Spring Surge

The continued shortage of quality real estate listings, coupled with record low mortgage interest rates have combined to add some zing to the property market over October. More>>

Wellbeing Stats: Finances Less Terrible And Less Great

According to results from the General Social Survey, the proportion of people who felt they had enough or more than enough money to meet everyday needs increased from 51 percent in 2008 to 63 percent in 2018, Stats NZ said today. More>>