Grain­corp lifts, UMG in cap­i­tal rais­ing

Central and North Rural Weekly - - RURAL WEEKLY -

GRAIN bulk han­dler and mar­keter Grain­corp has re­ported a net profit after tax of $388.3 mil­lion for the six months to March 31.

But the ex­tra­or­di­nary fi­nan­cial re­sult takes into ac­count a profit of $310.5 mil­lion from the divest­ment of its malt di­vi­sion into a sep­a­rate com­pany, United Malt Group.

Grain­corp’s un­der­ly­ing earn­ings be­fore in­ter­est, de­pre­ci­a­tion and amor­ti­sa­tion were $183 mil­lion for the six months, which in­cludes earn­ings from the malt­ing di­vi­sion prior to the de­merger.

Un­der­ly­ing NPAT was $55 mil­lion.

Grain­corp chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer Alis­tair Bell said un­der­ly­ing earn­ings and NPAT were both pos­i­tive re­sults com­pared to the pre­vi­ous cor­re­spond­ing pe­riod.

Mr Bell said that was de­spite a smaller sum­mer crop this year. The com­pany suf­fered a loss of $48 mil­lion in the first six months of the pre­vi­ous year.

Mr Bell said the board con­sid­ered pay­ing an in­terim dividend but opted to re­view that when the full-year re­sults were an­nounced with “times more cer­tain”. Grain­corp man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Robert Spur­way said the com­pany had a strong balance sheet, with core debt now zero. The com­pany sold off Aus­tralian Bulk Liq­uid Ter­mi­nals in the past year.

It main­tained a 10 per cent stake in UMG, now val­ued at $112 mil­lion.

Mr Spur­way said it was pleas­ing to see a sig­nif­i­cant turn­around in the pro­cess­ing di­vi­sion, a re­sult of bet­ter oilseed crush­ing mar­gins and greater ef­fi­ciency at its Nu­murkah oilseed plant.

That ac­counted for $23 mil­lion in earn­ings dur­ing the past six months — a big turn­around from the $2 mil­lion loss for the pre­vi­ous cor­re­spond­ing pe­riod.

Mr Spur­way main­tained some op­ti­mism for the com­ing har­vest, with good rain fall­ing in south­east­ern Aus­tralia.

Grain­corp is hop­ing its for­tunes are turn­ing around after post­ing good half-year re­sults. Pic­ture: FILE

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