Kiotech International plc, which supplies high-performance natural feed additives to enhance health, growth and sustainability in agriculture and aquaculture, is pleased to announce its preliminary results for the twelve months to 31 December 2009.
The Group significantly increased its sales and profit over the previous year and also completed the acquisition of Optivite Group, whose results are included from 1 October 2009.
Key points: Financial
• Headline profit before tax of £1,409,105 (2008: £482,211) includes £675,417
exceptional gain from the Ultrabite® disposal
• Underlying profit before tax and share-based payments rose to £763,659 (2008: £553,836)
• Sales advanced to £10,955,355 (2008: £5,428,169)
• Cash balance increased to £5,014,820 (2008: £1,867,592) at year end
• 5% increase in the proposed final dividend to 0.05 pence per share (2008: 0.04 pence)
Key points: Operations
• Profit improvement achieved through 31% growth in sales at Agil
• Acquisition and integration of Optivite progressing to plan
• First sales of our Salkil gut acidifier achieved in Brazil
• Registration received in China for pHorce and first sales achieved
• Aquatice® given approval to market for fin fish species in Thailand
Richard Edwards, Chief Executive, commented: "This has been another very good year for the Group with sales and profit growth driven by a combination of organic and acquisition growth in our agricultural markets. The acquisition of Optivite presents further opportunities to develop the business into a focused feed additive and nutrition business with significant global reach. Financially we are very sound with a strong cash position, which allows us to consider further acquisition opportunities, at the right price, to broaden our product and geographic spread and enhance shareholder value."
In the year to 31 December 2009 headline profit before tax was £1,409,105 (2008:£ 482,211), including the exceptional gain of GBP675,417 on the Ultrabite® sale. Sales more than doubled to £10,955,355 (2008: £5,428,169) while pre tax profit, before share-based payments and the Ultrabite® disposal, advanced significantly to £763,659 (2008: £553,836). This result was driven by an excellent performance from Agil and a maiden three months contribution from Optivite. The balance sheet remains very sound and the year ended with a cash balance of over £5million (2008: £1.87 million) underlining the cash generative quality of the business, the sale of the sports fishing business and the share placing. These funds will be available for investing in the expansion of the business through trading and appropriate acquisitions.
The Board is delighted to declare a final dividend of 0.05 pence per share for the year to 31 December 2009, an increase of 25 per cent over the previous year's maiden final dividend of 0.04 pence. Shareholder approval will be sought at the Annual General Meeting on 30 June 2010 to pay the final dividend on 30July 2010 to shareholders on the register on 2 July 2010.
Operations - Agriculture
This was another very good year for the division with Agil delivering a sales increase of over thirty per cent. Performances in Bangladesh, Chile, Greece, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Turkey were particularly encouraging; we have worked closely with our distributors to win business from some of the leading poultry integrators in these countries. Salmonella issues in Finland increased demand for our Salkil product and Vietnam, a new territory for Agil, performed well.
Management continues to review, and where necessary amend, its distribution arrangements to ensure that the global marketing of its products is being handled in the most efficient and cost effective manner by distributors with a strong presence in their markets. In Thailand our distributor commenced sales of our anti-oxidant products used in animal feed applications and has now started to register a number of organic acid products for sale in the Thai agricultural market. We have recently registered a number of products in Brazil and South Africa, including Salkil, the company's key acidifier for the poultry market. Securing registration in Brazil has been a lengthy process and we are delighted that our organic acid products are now being sold into one of the world's largest poultry and pig meat markets. This is an important step and we look forward to receiving further regulatory approvals in due course.
China subsidiary fully established
The Group's wholly owned subsidiary in China is now fully established and we have recently received product registration for our gut acidifier pHorce;
Further approvals are expected. We have already begun to capitalize on Optivite's presence in China with Genex®, a performance enhancing acid and essential oil combination, which is registered in China as a feed additive. We have transferred the product to the Kiotech team, who, with the technical support of Optivite, have recently held a series of customer seminars to promote the product. China is the world's largest producer and consumer of pig and poultry meat and is rapidly adopting sophisticated production techniques with a requirement for our range of specialist technical feed additive products.
Product development is central to driving organic growth and our recently launched gut acidifier, pHorce, continues to grow as new customers, particularly in the grower pig market. We are also in the final stages of developing and launching a number of other products drawing on the nutritional expertise of Optivite.