Chairman’s Opening Remarks
F00 Full Year Results Briefing
Goodman Fielder Limited
Good morning and welcome to the results briefing for the year ended 30 June 2000.
The last twelve months have been very successful for Goodman Fielder. The company recorded a 24.2 per cent increase in
net profit after tax before abnormals to $130.9 million. Even after abnormals, net profit was up by nearly 27 per cent
to $83 million.
The financial results reflect some of the most far-ranging changes in the history of the company. As part of our
continued portfolio restructuring, Goodman Fielder sold non-core businesses, such as Steggles poultry, Vetta pasta, and
since the year-end, Starch Australasia. The company also acquired strong businesses such as Bunge Defiance in Australia,
Ernest Adams in New Zealand and Shanghai Van Den Bergh in China.
These changes fundamentally improved the shape and strength of the business, creating a unique and extremely strong
group of businesses based in particular on our core Australasian operations. The strength of our combined businesses in
Australia and New Zealand is highlighted by very strong growth in sales of seven per cent, earnings before interest and
tax of 24 per cent, and high return on funds employed of just over 15 per cent.
On the basis of the performance last year, the Board of Directors have declared a final dividend of 4.0 cents per share,
giving a total dividend of 7.5 cents per share. This means the pay-out ratio will fall from 90 per cent to 73.1 per cent
in line with the new dividend policy announced last year. The company will not rest on this result and we will continue
to drive improved operational performance and shareholder returns.
It is obviously too early to comment in detail on the new financial year, although trading conditions so far have been
satisfactory. My personal view is that we should not make a detailed forecast until the interim result. However, the
full year result provides us with improved confidence about future earnings growth as we extract the next phase of
benefits from ongoing restructuring and integration.
Our strategic objective therefore is clear. We aim to generate increased earnings to shareholders on a sustainable
basis. This full year profit result provides the Board of Directors with confidence that we can do that. As a sign of
this confidence, the Board of Directors expect to frank our dividend payment to 50 per cent from the first half of the
2001 financial year.
8 September 2000
For further information:
Jill Dryden, Porter Novelli New Zealand
Tel: 09 373 3786 or 021 242 0486