Skellerup advances in both agriculture and industry

Skellerup Holdings had made a positive start to the financial year as it drove earnings growth across both operating divisions, chief executive David Mair said yesterday.

The company's reported profit of $10.8 million for the six months ended December was 14% higher than the $9.48 million reported in the previous corresponding period.

Revenue rose 2% to $97.3 million from $94.9 million.

Operating earnings were up 13% to $15.6 million from $13.8 million.

Earnings per share rose 14% and the dividend increased to 3.5c per share from 3cps in the corresponding period.

Net debt fell in the period by 25% to $3.4 million.

Skellerup increased its forecast full-year reported profit to be within the range of $22 million to $24 million.

Mr Mair said the performance of the industrial divisions was particularly pleasing. The changes made to the business to improve the competitive position and distribution to the market had been successful.

''We have begun to realise earnings improvement here, so that is encouraging.

"Once more, the agri division was well underpinned by the strength of the New Zealand dairy sector, where demand for rubber liners and other agri-related products continued to grow.''

Skellerup considered itself well-positioned in markets in which it operated, he said. However, it would continue to look for efficiencies and opportunities to grow.


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