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Performance Overview

Chairman's Report

The Group has ended 2014 with results from continuing operations of $217.3m and profit after tax of $153.4m, compared to $196.2m and $289.0m respectively for the prior year. Included in the prior year profit after tax was non-recurring income of $151.8m representing gains from the settlement of debt and disposal of investments. Underscoring the 2014 performance is topline growth of $9.0m together with efficient management control of our operating expenses. Our brands continue to grow profitably and the results from the branded business increased by $14.6m (7.4%) over the prior year despite the many challenges in the domestic market and in some of our international export markets. Significant capital investment continues to be undertaken as we steadily modernize our plant and ensure a strong asset base to support the needs of our business. Positive cashflows continue to support healthy returns to shareholders, and cash and cash equivalents exceeded total borrowings by $58.6m at the year end. The EPS of $0.75 reflects the solid performance of the Group for the year and in light of this, the Board is pleased to announce a final dividend of $0.16 per share in respect of 2014, with a record date of April 10, 2015 and payment date of April 24, 2015. Together with the interim dividend of $0.10 paid on September 1, 2014, this brings the total dividend in respect of 2014 to $0.26 per share. Through consistent effort, talent and commitment, we continually work to maintain the right business focus in light of economic and environmental challenges domestically and internationally.

In this regard, I wish to thank the Members of the Board of Directors for their valued contribution to the governance of the Group over the past year, and to commend management and all employees for their loyalty and astute execution of strategies that have yielded the results now reported. We look forward to a profitable year ahead as we continue to work with all stakeholders to achieve growth and success for the Group.

Gerald Yetming
March 23, 2015