Johannesburg - AVI [JSE:AVI] revenue for the six months
ended December was up 10.7% to R4.887bn‚ the company said on Tuesday.
The company also advised that consolidated headline earnings
per share for the continuing operations for the six months ended December 2012
are expected to increase by between 6% and 9% over the comparable period in the
The company said with the exception of I&J‚ all of the
group's business units performed solidly in a tough trading environment
characterised by constrained consumer spending and increasing competition in
some categories. Spitz continued to produce pleasing growth.
I&J had an unexpectedly difficult semester compared to
the first half of last year with a number of material factors constraining
Sales volumes declined by 14% due largely to low fishing
fleet availability caused by planned and unplanned vessel maintenance and poor
catch rates on a comparable basis‚ while a material increase in fuel costs for
the fishing fleet following the termination of the supply of our cheaper marine
fuel blend in the second half of the last financial year‚ and lower foreign
exchange gains than registered in the prior period‚ impacted on profits.
Consolidated profit margins have largely been maintained
despite pressure from a weaker rand on imports and the decrease in I&J's
profit‚ with several categories benefitting from volume leverage; notably
creamer‚ biscuits and footwear & apparel.
Green Cross has performed in line with expectations and
contributed to strong volume growth in fashion brands‚ the company said.
The company said that other factors impacting on the results
for the first semester were the equity earnings from I&J's joint venture
with Simplot Australia, which were materially lower due to tough retail trading
conditions in Australia combined with less benefit from foreign exchange movements.
Net finance charges increased in line with higher debt
levels following the acquisition of Green Cross and the special dividend of 180
cents per share paid in October 2012 and the effective tax rate decreased as
the prior period charge included R24.4m of Secondary Tax on Companies which
fell away with the move to Withholding Tax on Dividends.
In addition‚ the weighted average number of shares in issue
during the period was 2.7% higher than in the same period last year due to the
issue of new shares in terms of the group's various share incentive schemes‚
particularly the Black Staff Empowerment Scheme which reached its first normal
vesting date in January 2012.
It added that consolidated earnings per share for the
continuing operations for the six months ended December 2012‚ including capital
gains and losses on the disposal of assets‚ are expected to increase by between
6% and 9% over the comparable period in the prior year.
Consolidated earnings per share for the total operations of
the group for the six months ended December 2012‚ including capital gains and
losses on the disposal of assets‚ are expected to increase by between 10% and
13% over the comparable period in the prior year.
I&J's catch rates improved in the latter part of the
period under review and should these catch rates be sustained‚ the increased
volumes‚ together with the benefit of the weaker rand on export sales‚ should
support a materially improved second half for I&J.