Veritas cuts earnings guidance after AGM

Article – BusinessDesk

Veritas cuts earnings guidance after AGM, sees profit falling by up to 17% in 2018

By Paul McBeth

Dec. 6 (BusinessDesk) – Veritas Investments expects annual profit to fall as much as 17 percent in the 2018 financial year, issuing the earnings downgrade in a notice to the stock exchange following today’s annual meeting.

The food and beverage investor is operating under the close watch of lender ANZ Bank New Zealand, which wants Veritas to sell assets to repay debts. The company today said it expects net profit from continuing operations of between $3.5 million and $4 million in the 12 months ending June 30, down from $4.2 million in 2017. It expects to generate revenue of $26-to-$29 million in the 2018 year, down from $30.8 million.

“As disclosed in our annual financial statements for FY17, the board is considering a number of restructuring options for the group,” chair Tim Cook said in a statement. “Accordingly, this guidance is subject to any write-offs and restructuring costs, if any, that are incurred with the implementation of these initiatives.”

Veritas was granted a lifeline by its lender ANZ in November, with the bank choosing to extend the maturity on $28.5 million of debt, giving the food investor space to complete any potential asset sale.

Director Sharon Hunter retired by rotation at today’s annual meeting in Auckland, and didn’t seek re-election. Shareholders approved the firm’s sole resolution authorising the board to fix the fees and expenses of PwC as Veritas’s auditor.

The shares recently traded at 6.4 cents, valuing Veritas at $2.8 million.


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