Business 14.5.2018 08:52 am

Astral earnings soar, outlook favourable

The company says general business confidence and the prospect for foreign direct investment has improved following the election of Cyril Ramaphosa as the country’s new president.

Astral Foods said on Monday its headline earnings per share soared 455 percent in the six months to March, while revenue jumped 15 percent.

The integrated poultry producer declared an interim dividend of R10.00 per share, up sharply from R1.80 for the same period last year.

It said general business confidence and the prospect for foreign direct investment had improved following the election of Cyril Ramaphosa as the country’s new president.

A bumper maize crop in 2017 and prospects of an above average maize crop in 2018 would also stand the company in good stead over the next period from a feed input cost point of view.

However, Avian influenza remained a threat and major concern for the poultry industry with the upcoming winter season.

“Astral remains committed to its strategy of being the best cost integrated poultry producer, and will embark on various identified capital projects that will support its stated strategy, as well as organic growth and efficiency improvement opportunities,” the company said.

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