Godfrey Hirst lifts carpet sales 3.5%, profit slips on year-earlier one-time gains

Godfrey Hirst, the biggest carpet maker in Australasia, lifted sales at its New Zealand unit by 3.5 percent, while profit fell from a year earlier, which was swelled by one-time gains.

Hirst's Avon Pacific Holdings unit reported sales in the year ended June 30 of $160.1 million, from $154.7 million a year earlier, according to its financial statements. Profit dropped to $5.4 million from $10.8 million a year earlier, when it recorded a gain of $6.5 million on the purchase of Summit Wool Spinners, and a gain of about $3 million from the sale of property in Christchurch.

Hirst acquired failed carpet maker Feltex in 2006, increasing its share of a market where it competes with Cavalier and both have to contend with rivalry from cheap, imported carpets. The 2014 accounts show it still retains a former Feltex site at Foxton, which is listed among $1.4 million of non-current assets held for sale. Disposing of the site had been held up by a dispute with a third party over its conditional sale. While the dispute had now been resolved, the sale hasn't been settled.

In October, Cavalier warned it would probably miss earnings guidance because of the strong kiwi dollar against the Australian dollar and the high price of wool.