Bradken earnings down at $A183.6m

Bradken, the Australian-listed company which has an operation in Dunedin, yesterday reported reduced earnings and sales revenue for the year ended June 30.

The company announced recently it was putting its more than 60 Dunedin workers on a four-day week after losing a KiwiRail contract to an American company.

Bradken had operating earnings of $A183.6 million ($NZ209.6 million) for the year, down 17% on the $A220.4 million reported in the previous corresponding period (pcp).

The company also reported underlying operating earnings of $A214 million.

The difference in the figures related to a one-off before-tax charge of $A30.4 million relating to the Federal Court proceedings associated with the Norcast acquisition, which would be written back to profit if the company's appeal was successful.

Reported tax-paid profit was $A66.9 million, down 33% on the $A100.5 million in the pcp, and sales revenue was down 10% to $A1.3 billion.

Managing director Brian Hodges said the profit was achieved in a slowing market and it demonstrated the strength of the company's consumable products bias and the defensibility of its margins.

A final tax-paid dividend of A18c would be paid, taking the full-year dividend to A38c, down 7% on the pcp.

Bradken's rail division sales of $A233 million were down about 33% on the pcp. During the year, the division produced 1070 rail cars in the Xuzhou manufacturing facility, in China.

That represented a large reduction on the previous year and was reflective of the general downturn in the resources sector, which had also seen a reduction in spare parts sales, Mr Hodges said.

In April, Bradken opened a 20,000-tonne foundry in Xuzhou, which started producing resources-related consumable products during its start-up production phase.

''This facility will be a cornerstone for future growth,'' Mr Hodges said.

Bradken's business strategies remained unchanged, with the focus on key strengths in the design, manufacture and supply of consumable products to the mining, energy and rail industries, he said.

''We expect mine production to show steady increases in financial 2014 for most commodities and the energy segment to remain strong for oil and gas products,'' Mr Hodges said.

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