Scales affirms 2015 earnings guidance for $20.8M profit

The company expects net profit of $20.8m and ebita of $41.2m in calendar 2015.

Scales Corp [NZX: SCL], the fruit and vegetables logistics company, affirmed its earnings guidance for 2015 with growth tipped across all of its units.

The Christchurch-based company expects net profit of $20.8 million and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of $41.2 million in calendar 2015, retaining the forecast from its June prospectus, it said in a statement. Scales will report its 2014 earnings on Feb. 26, and has previously said it might "slightly exceed" the forecast profit of $15.9 million.

The company's horticulture unit is experiencing "continued strength in Asia and Middle Eastern markets" with favourable currency movements and competitive shipping rates helping offset pressure from the Russian trade embargo, and its Mr Apple division will meet or beat the 2015 crop estimates of 2.72 million Tray Carton Equivalents (TCEs).

Capacity in its storage and logistics unit is expected to rise 16 percent once it completes a new Auckland coldstore in the September quarter, and its new business servicing dairy suppliers is anticipated to benefit its liquid storage business, it said.

Scales is New Zealand's largest apple exporter, and also owns businesses across the primary sector including, sea and air freight services, cold store operations, and food ingredients, including pet foods and juice concentrate businesses. Last year the company lifted profit 50 percent to $20.4 million in calendar 2013, on the back of rising Asian demand for apples.

Shares of Scales last traded at $1.42, below its offer price of $1.60 when it listed in July.


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