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Iwi Shareholders To Receive Dividend Despite Impacted Year

All 58 Iwi to receive share of $8.8 million dividend as financial results finalised

New Zealand’s largest Māori-owned kaimoana and kai ora company and second largest seafood company by value and volume, Moana New Zealand, has reported a net profit after tax of $20.3 million for the 2020 financial year.

Owned by all Māori across the motu, Moana New Zealand returns a minimum of forty percent of profit to its Iwi shareholders for the benefit of their local communities, social programmes and other commercial interests. The dividend was paid last week.

Overall, Moana New Zealand’s $8.5 million operating earnings before interest and tax (excluding its 50% share of Sealord earnings) were 42 percent down on Plan and 47 percent down on 2019 earnings.

This included the impact of restrictions imposed on the global hospitality industry due to Covid19, which resulted in falling demand and increased competition from other suppliers, as well as the impact of border closures and increased international airfreight costs. By market the biggest impact was on live and chilled exports to China.

Moana New Zealand’s Chairperson, Hinerangi Raumati-Tu’ua, and Chief Executive, Steve Tarrant, say they are proud of collective efforts of Moana New Zealand and Sealord staff under challenging operating conditions.

“Despite a very difficult year the highlight was the courage, passion and commitment shown by all staff in times of great uncertainty. Being classed as an essential service was a privilege our staff took seriously,” says Raumati-Tu’ua.

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Adds Tarrant: “Staff were extremely proud and in fact humbled to be able to supply our nation’s kaimoana and kai ora needs through challenging periods.”

The single biggest impact of Covid19, starting with market closures in China from late January, was on Moana New Zealand’s koura (lobster) earnings – these ended up down 53 percent on Plan and only 45 percent of 2019 earnings. Tarrant acknowledges one-off relief provided by the Minister of Fisheries which allowed carryover to the new fishing season of up to 10 percent uncaught quota entitlement.

Moana New Zealand’s ika (fin fish) business showed strength and resilience during the pandemic. Increased ika supply to both domestic and Australian fresh chilled markets helped the business when wider export markets faced restrictions which heavily impacted access and demand.

“Our domestic market channels exceeded sales expectations as Kiwi whānau continued to put healthy protein on the dining room table during the lockdown periods,” says Tarrant.

A highlight for the year was Sealord’s significant contribution following record retail market growth in response to changing consumer purchasing behaviour during the pandemic. Additionally, the incremental earnings from its acquisition of the remaining 50 percent of Petuna Aquaculture, Sealord’s Tasmanian salmon joint venture, provided an uplift to its result.

Moana New Zealand’s share of Sealord’s operating earnings after tax is $14.6m.

-ENDS-

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