'Disappointing' Silver Fern Farms result flagged

By Sally Rae of the Otago Daily Times

Silver Fern Farms chairman Rob Hewett (right) and chief executive Dean Hamilton. Photo / Otago Daily Times / Gerard O'Brien.
Silver Fern Farms chairman Rob Hewett (right) and chief executive Dean Hamilton. Photo / Otago Daily Times / Gerard O'Brien.

Silver Fern Farms expects its full-year financial result to be "materially'' below last year's performance.

In a recent update to shareholders, chairman Rob Hewett and chief executive Dean Hamilton said that was "clearly disappointing''.

The impact of lower market prices and unpredictable livestock patterns had overshadowed a lot of positive initiatives.

Last year, the company posted reported profit for the year ended September of $24.9million, up from $500,000 in 2014.

An update would be provided to shareholders after the June quarter was completed.

Inventory was below the corresponding time last year and more than 90% of the stock had a committed sale against it.

Debt was below the same time last year.

The company continued to be optimistic of a positive Overseas Investment Office decision this month or next month on the Shanghai Maling joint venture.

In the meantime, Silver Fern Farms had been building its China sales strategy with the Shanghai Maling team for the last several months.

It now had a new range of products in development in New Zealand which it believed would best suit the China market.

The aim was to launch later in the year, with the support of Shanghai Maling's retail platform.

The process of a co-operative constitutional review continued.

An independent group of shareholders would be involved in that over coming months, in preparation for wider consultation with shareholders in the middle of the year.

Topics being considered in the review included share classes, voting rights, distribution policies and director make-up.

Any changes to the constitution would require a 75 per cent vote.

- Otago Daily Times

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