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Iwi to receive largest ever cash dividend from Moana NZ

The largest Iwi-owned kaimoana and kai ora company, Moana New Zealand, has today reported a net profit after tax of $22.8 million for the year ended 30 September 2019. Finishing the year at 109% of plan, this is 7% up on last year’s profit of $21.4 million.

Moana New Zealand has also declared their largest cash dividend yet of $11.3 million, in accordance with the Company’s dividend policy and as set out in the Maori Fisheries Act. Its 58 Iwi shareholders will receive their respective share of the dividend today. This brings the total dividends to its shareholders since Moana New Zealand’s inception in 2004, to $106.4 million.

In making the announcement, the Chairman of Moana New Zealand, Whaimutu Dewes, and Chief Executive Steve Tarrant said that they are pleased with the result and proud of the collective efforts of Moana New Zealand and Sealord staff under such challenging operating conditions.

Sealord Group Limited had a stellar year with a 33% profit improvement from the prior year. This was due to strong pricing in both export and domestic markets, further profit optimisation of product formats and sales channels, a good squid season and a record profit year for Petuna Aquaculture, Sealord’s Tasmanian salmon joint venture.

Moana New Zealand’s operating earnings before tax and interest (excluding its 50% share of Sealord earnings) were 104% of plan and up 11% on last year’s earnings. The company is beginning to realise benefits from innovation and operational excellence across the group and continues to achieve favourable pricing for their premium quality products. However, the blue abalone business remains a challenging proposition.

The two highlights this year were the fin fish and oyster businesses, both exceeding plan. Fin fish achieved a 24% lift despite a 20% cut to the total allowable commercial catch for tarakihi caught off the east coast of the North and South Island. The oyster business also achieved a 10% lift on plan.

Moana’s lobster earnings are generated through its involvement with Port Nicholson Fisheries, which is a pan-iwi business solely focused on lobster. The earnings through Port Nicholson Fisheries exceeded plan which is a great outcome in light of a small reduction in total allowable commercial catch and challenging market conditions in China where most export quality lobster is sent.

Moana New Zealand continues to work with Iwi and industry groups to foster stronger partnerships and to ensure our fisheries are being managed with a long-term, sustainable view in mind.

“While this year has brought with it some lofty challenges, the Moana and Sealord teams have continued to work hard to deliver another strong result for our shareholders,”says Tarrant.

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