Abano flat result hides revenue, costs

Abano Healthcare produced a flat operating profit for the year ended May but once it added in Australian dental revenue and removed acquisition expenses, its financial results looked flattering.

Revenue for the year was $211.1 million, up 2% on the previous corresponding period.

The company also reports gross revenue, which includes revenue from the joint venture audiology group and Australian dental revenue before payment of dentist commissions. Gross revenue was up 6% at $274 million.

Operating earnings were unchanged at $27.8 million, but underlying earnings, which exclude acquisition expenses, were $29.1 million, giving an underlying profit after tax of $6.1 million.

Directors confirmed a final dividend of 13.7c per share, giving a total dividend of 21cps for the year.

Managing director Alan Clarke said the focus for Abano on building long-term value had not over-ridden the the company's ability to consistently deliver attractive near-term value growth for shareholders.

''Over the last eight years, our portfolio has changed as we have exited businesses which we believe have reached maturity or have limited potential for further growth in the in the group.''

Dental care remained the primary investment area for Abano in the 2015 financial year.

While economic conditions in New Zealand were improving, they remained difficult in Australia, Mr Clarke said.

Abano had strong and supportive relationships with its bankers and, based on current projections, the group would not need to raise additional capital or increase debt facilities in the foreseeable future to fund its planned acquisition and growth strategy investments.

Abano expected to deliver improved profits next year and directors were reviewing the dividend policy.

A new policy was expected to be in place for the 2015 interim dividend, Mr Clarke said.

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