Positive half-year result for AA Co, despite COVID market impact


Beef Central (Australia)

November 19, 2020


DESPITE considerable market impacts since the onset of COVID, the Australian Agricultural Co has lodged a strong operating profit of $23.5 million for the half-year ended September, up from $6.3 million for the same period last year. Even excluding the Jobkeeper stimulus payment AA Co qualified for, the half-year profit was still $16.8m.


Statutory pre-tax earnings were $15m, versus a $3.4m loss for the first-half back in 2019. The net loss after tax was $1.7m, compared with a $14.1m loss for the previous corresponding period a year earlier.


The result comes following a challenging period for the company, including navigating the ongoing uncertainty and global impact of COVID, leading to a greater focus on retail sales over food service.


Average prices per kilo for beef sales improved by 14.5pc, while a ‘disciplined focus’ on cost reduction resulted in a saving of $22m in controllable costs, also supported the positive result.


AA Co managing director Hugh Killen said the full force of COVID hit the restaurant sector right as the company began its new financial year in April, with all 16 international food service markets severely impacted in a matter of weeks.


“To overcome the initial challenges and post a positive half is a notable achievement,” he said.


“However, while this interim result is commendable, we are mindful there are many challenges still to come and a number of complexities to work through over the next six months.”


COVID impact ...


Uncertain outlook ...