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Guinness Peat Group reports loss for 2009

Investment company Guinness Peat Group, which reported a Stg36 million loss (NZ$78.1m) for 2009, is working on a proposal to return value to shareholders.Chairman Sir Ron Brierley said the result was somewhat worse than anticipated, mainly due to items la

NZPA
Mon, 01 Mar 2010

Investment company Guinness Peat Group, which reported a Stg36 million loss (NZ$78.1m) for 2009, is working on a proposal to return value to shareholders.

Chairman Sir Ron Brierley said the result was somewhat worse than anticipated, mainly due to items largely beyond the company's control.

Those items included foreign exchange fluctuations which moved from a gain of Stg7m at the interim report to a loss of Stg8m for the full year.

But the company also made a gain of Stg10m on the sale of MYOB shares.

The capital reconstruction of Australian aluminium product supplier Capral was a notable achievement.

"The reduction in our shareholding to 44 percent, combined with earlier trading losses, crystallised a deficit of Stg15m but, hopefully, the last loss from this source," Sir Ron said.

"Now, for the first time in many years, Capral has a sound financial and trading platform from which to produce acceptable returns, notwithstanding the challenges still remaining."

The Coats business was right in the firing line of the global downturn, which was particularly evident in the textile industries, Sir Ron said.

A net loss of Stg3m by Coats was again due to a mismatch of various country taxes of Stg21m exceeding the original net profit of Stg18m. Continuing strong cash flow enabled Coats to reduce its borrowings by Stg81m during the year.

The company's standard 1p dividend and one for 10 bonus issue had been maintained.

Sir Ron said GPG's commitment to returning value to shareholders in 2010, which had been affected by global financial conditions in 2009, had now been restored as a top priority with the board working on proposals for its early implementation.

Technical and other issues needed to be resolved before a more specific announcement could be made, but it was planned to have a process in place before the annual meeting on May 7.

NZPA
Mon, 01 Mar 2010
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Guinness Peat Group reports loss for 2009
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