Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Comvita buzzing, but honey harvest could get sticky

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Yield has been hit hard by weather events in December, January and February.
Comvita CEO David Banfield says the results ‘give more evidence that we can deliver revenue, margin and earnings growth while investing in long-term brand and business-building activity’.
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Listed apiarist Comvita increased revenue by 7% in the first half of the financial year to $112 million and has declared a fully imputed interim dividend of 2.5c a share.

Operating profit has gone up 60% to $11.6m and net profit after tax up 19% to $4.2m.

Chief executive David Banfield said the company is on track to deliver its 2025 target of $50m in earnings before interest and tax.

The company’s facilities in Hawke’s Bay suffered extensive damage and are expected to be written off with full insurance cover and a site clearance.

Extraction has been moved to another facility without material impact to daily operations, Banfield said.

Chair Brett Hewlett said the company is showing resilience in results with the sixth consecutive reporting period with a double-digit increase in earnings.

“The result shared today gives more evidence that we can deliver revenue, margin and earnings growth while investing in long-term brand and business-building activity.”

However, the 2023 honey harvest has been severely impacted by weather events in December, January and February after initial flowering was delayed by four weeks.

It won’t be until April that Comvita gets a full understanding of the quality and volume of the harvest.

Comvita shares have traded in the range $3 to $3.50 during the past year.

Comvita has 550 fulltime equivalent staff roles and 62% of these are filled by women.

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