Foley Family Wines profits up on export jump to US

American businessman and vineyard owner Bill Foley (TV3)
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Foley Family Wines [NZAX: FFW], the NZAX-listed company majority-owned by US businessman Bill Foley, says profits rose sharply in the six months through December, mainly driven by a jump in exports to the US. The company operates a range of brands including Grove Mill, Sanctuary and Te Kairanga.

Net profit jumped to $1.6 million in the six months ended December 31 from $400,000 a year earlier, the company said in a statement. Sales rose 12%  to $17.4 million. Packaged export case sales were up 42% and the company said it has had strong interest from China.

Foley sold 60,995 cases of wine to the US during the second half of 2015, an increase of 43% on a year earlier. That's more wine than it sold domestically in New Zealand, where it sold 60,000 cases, a drop of 12%.

Chief executive Mark Turnbull said this reflected "the highly competitive nature of the domestic New Zealand market and the carry-through of wine from the large 2014 vintage for some wineries, leading to aggressive domestic pricing."

New Zealand's wine exports reached a record high of $1.54 billion in 2015, up 14% according to figures from the trade body, New Zealand Winegrowers. Sales to the US rose 26% to $430 million, Canada was up 18% and the UK up 12%. This was partly driven by the lower kiwi dollar, which made New Zealand wine cheaper in overseas markets.

Shares in Foley Family Wines recently traded at $1.42 and have fallen 4% in the last year, valuing the company at $74.1 million.


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