The Board of Directors of Simonds Farsons Cisk plc met on 26 April 2006 and approved the financial statements for the twelve months ended 31 January 2006.
According to Mr Louis Farrugia, the chief executive officer of Simonds Farsons Cisk plc, the business environment for the period ended 31 January 2006 was characterised by an surge in the price of utilities and fuel which resulted in increased costs and dampened consumer spending. Mr Farrugia also commented that tourism was relatively flat and temperatures were below average resulting in lower demand for beverages. The market has also seen the advent of new parallel traders in food imports and who trade in all brands and imports of beverages. The difficult operating environment and increased competition exhibited during the period, saw the turnover of the Group decrease by 1.8% to Lm26.2 million (2005: Lm26.7 million) while cost of sales increased marginally resulting in a 7% decrease in gross profit to Lm9.17 million (2005: Lm9.87 million). Operating profit also took a knock falling by 77.83%, from Lm1.4 million to Lm319,000.
The Group incurred losses also as a result of the poor performance by some of its subsidiary companies. The Board of Directors also took the decision to discontinue the operations of Galleria Entertainment Complex, with a resulting impairment charge of LM404,000. As part of Farsons current restructuring exercise, charges totalling Lm197,000 in relation to the early retirement scheme were incurred.
For the twelve months ended 31 January 2006, the Group registered a profit before taxation amounting to Lm487,000, a decrease of 52.02% from last year. However, a tax write back amounting to Lm265,000 helped boost the bottom line and brought the profit from continuing operations to Lm752,000. This is only 4.57% lower than previous year’s profit of Lm788,000. Nevertheless, the loss from discontinued operations amounted to Lm542,000 (2005: Lm179,000) and this lowered the profit for the financial year to Lm210,000 (2005: Lm609,000).
After adjusting for minority interests the profit attributable to shareholders amounted to Lm365,000 (2005: Lm624,000) representing an earnings per share of 1c4.
During the period under review, the Group’s total assets decreased by 3.26% from Lm36.3 million to Lm35.12 million. Shareholders funds decreased from Lm15.93 to Lm15.53 million resulting in a book value per share of 60c
The Directors have recommended the payment of an interim net dividend of 0c19444 per share (Lm50,000) and a final net dividend of 0c98222 per share (Lm 250,000) representing a total net dividend of 1c16 per share (Lm300,000), 52% lower than last year’s total dividend. The interim dividend will be distributed out of profits taxed at 37.5% to ordinary shareholders on the Register as at close of business on 3 May 2006. The proposed final dividend will be paid to shareholders after its approval at the next Annual General Meeting on 28 June 2006. Shareholders on the company’s register as at 25 May 2006 will be entitled to receive the final dividend.