Hellaby Holdings delivered on its promise of first-half
growth but managing director John Williamson was still
cautious about trading conditions and the economic recovery.
Operating earnings in the six months ended December were up
74% to $23.8 million on the previous corresponding period
Reported profit was up 60% to $9.9 million and earnings per
share were up 23% to 10.1 cents.
Revenue was up 44% to $351.5 million, driven mainly by two
acquisitions contributing in the period. Equipment division
sales were up 38%.
The interim dividend of 5.5 cents per share was up 10% and is
''We're seeing growth in areas that are starting to pick up,
such as equipment.
"However, other sectors remain quite patchy and the increased
profitability in some of our operations is simply due to the
ongoing commitment of our people to improve the performance
of their respective businesses,'' Mr Williamson said.
Four of the group's five divisions achieved operating profits
equal to or better than the corresponding period last year.
Only footwear performed below last year's level, driven
mainly by what has been a sluggish retail environment.
The operating profit rise included a full six-month
contribution from Contract Resources and a three-month
contribution from Federal Batteries.
Collectively that resulted in a return on funds employed of
22.9%, coming in well ahead of the group target of 20%, he
said. The return on invested capital was 14.7%, ahead of the
weighted average cost of capital of 13.5%.
''These are both excellent results given that, calculated on
a 12-month rolling basis, they included only nine months of
earnings from Contract Resources and three months of earnings
from Federal Batteries, but are measured against the full
purchase price of those two acquisitions.''
Corporate overheads decreased by 3% on the pcp. Group funding
costs were $1.8 million higher, reflecting the debt-funded
The second half was expected to provide solid performance by
all of the divisions, oil and gas services, automotive,
equipment, packaging and footwear.
The profitability of many subsidiaries was weighted to the
second half and the group was on track to perform to market
expectations for the full year to June.
''Our businesses will remain focused on operational
improvement and organic growth,'' Mr Williamson said.