Bega Cheese has taken a 79 per cent cut in annual net profit to $28.8 million on the back of acquisition-related expenses, following a year of expansion that included the acquisitions of the Mondelez grocery business and the Peanut Company of Australia.
Bega’s revenue for the year to June 30 rose 17 per cent to $1.44 billion, driven by the contribution from the Mondelez acquisition – now known as Bega Foods, as well as higher international sales and increased milk intake from suppliers.
Despite stepping away from the potential takeover of Murray Goulburn in October 2017, Bega’s diversification push fuelled a $12 million purchase of the Peanut Company of Australia in January.
The $250 million acquisition of Saputo’s Koroit milk-drying facility in western Victoria, completed on August 2017, will also significantly increase capacity in butter, dairy nutritionals and milk powders, the company said.
Bega will issue a 5.5 cent final dividend, fully franked, up from five cents a year ago.
At 1310 AEST, Bega shares were up 2.3 per cent, or 17.5 cents, to $7.82 .
BEGA PROFITS DOWN AMID NEW ACQUISITIONS
* Net profit down 79pct to $28.8 million
* Revenue up 17pct to 1.44 billion
* Fully-franked final dividend of 5.5 cents/share, up from 5.0 cents/share year ago