ENP Newswire - 20 August 2014
Release date- 19082014 - Leading national construction and mining services group Watpac Limited has today announced an after tax profit of $17.9 million for the full year ended 30 June 2014.
The result is a significant increase on the previous corresponding period (2013: $4.7 million loss) and is in line with previous guidance.
Key highlights include:
Net profit after tax of $17.9M.
Underlying net profit after tax of $18.4M after adjusting for property impairments.
Full year dividend totalling 6 cents per share.
Aggregate work in hand of $1.84B as at 30 June 2014.
Strong cash position with $190.2M in cash and term deposits.
Divested $54M in property assets.
Core businesses of Construction, National Mining and WA Civil profitable and performing well.
Focus remains on profitability and building long-term, sustainable shareholder value.
Watpac Chair Chris Freeman said the result reflects the hard work of the last two years and the Group's determination to return the business to profitability.
'We have remained focused on strengthening the business and achieving our strategic priorities to put us in the strongest possible financial position to deliver sustainable shareholder returns,' Mr. Freeman said. 'Watpac is pleased to report that in addition to an after tax profit of $17.9 million, we have increased our cash position and declared a final dividend of 3.5 cents per share, with a total dividend for the year of 6 cents per share.
'This is the first time a final dividend has been paid since September 2011.' With an improving east coast construction market, Mr. Freeman said the Group's national contracting and mining operations, and civil operations in Western Australia, continued to perform profitably. 'We have been successful in the growth of our core businesses in the last 12 months, particularly construction, securing projects across a number of sectors including health, education, defence and public private partnerships which places us in good stead for FY15 and beyond.'
Mr. Freeman said the Group's balance sheet had also been strengthened through the return to profitability and continued divestment of the Group's portfolio of property assets. Watpac Chief Executive Officer Martin Monro said the Group enters FY15 with a strong balance sheet and a positive outlook for the Group's future operational performance.
'Watpac is well placed to capitalise on new opportunities and convert these as they emerge,' Mr. Monro said. 'The Group had a national work in hand position of nearly $2 billion as at 30 June 2014 and this is mainly attributable to the strengthening of our contracting business in FY14. 'While we have seen an increase in activity for the building industry, the resources sector has been soft. However our National Mining and WA Civil business is well placed to respond positively to the needs of the market.
'Our focus for the year ahead remains on strengthening our core businesses, in addition to the capabilities of our people, our culture and safety. 'We have substantial capacity to grow our work across all of the Group's business operations and regions, and look forward to delivering enhanced value for our shareholders.'
In recent weeks Watpac has secured contracts including stage one managing contractor services for the construction of the Queensland State Velodrome in Brisbane for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, and a contract with Hanking Gold Mining to provide mining services at its Cornishman Pit, located at the centre of its Southern Cross operations in Western Australia.
These are in addition to a number of contracts Watpac has been awarded over the past six months, including the $114 millionSouthpoint Office Tower in Brisbane, Queensland; the $83 million Nuclear Medicine Molybdenum-99 Facility in Lucas Heights, New South Wales; the $60MLeicester Street Student Accommodation Project in Melbourne, Victoria; stage one of the new Mater Private Hospital in Springfield, Queensland, valued at $47 million and the $46 million Kempsey District Hospital Redevelopment in Kempsey, News South Wales.
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