Announcements     |   22 August 2001

Fletcher Building Limited Results for the Period Ended June 30 2001

The initial trading period of Fletcher Building Limited, from 24 March 2001 to 30 June 2001, produced earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) of $42 million before unusual items, and net earnings of $19 million.

The Chief Executive Officer, Mr Ralph Waters, said the results represented an encouraging start to Fletcher Building's existence as a standalone listed company. Fletcher Building commenced trading on 24 March 2001 as a consequence of the Fletcher Challenge group separation process, and acquired the operations, assets and liabilities previously attributed to Fletcher Challenge Limited - Building Operations.

"In the initial trading period, improved operating performance and some recovery in demand led to significant increases in both earnings and cash flow," Mr Waters said.  "Using the pro forma 12 months accounts as a basis for assessment, about 45 per cent of the year's earnings at the EBIT level, and 63 per cent of the year's cash flow, were generated in that period of just over three months."

Results

  • Earnings before interest, tax and unusuals were $42 million.
  • Net profit after tax, minorities and unusual items was $19 million.
  • Strong cashflows of $159 million from operations, including working capital improvements, have enabled net debt to reduce from $485 million to $274 million.
  • The good result evidences better operational performance with some recovery in demand.
  • The last of the major construction claims have been resolved with the Manapouri tunnel settlement.

Outlook

  • Earnings before interest, depreciation and tax for the half year should be comfortably ahead of the same period last year, provided there is no deterioration in economic activity and electricity problems are resolved in the short term.
  • Our Construction business commences the year with a very strong backlog.

Dividend

  • A fully tax credited dividend of 6 cents a share has been declared.

Pro Forma Result

  • For comparative purposes only, pro forma accounts for the full 12 months have been prepared, and show net earnings after tax and minorities but before unusuals of $34 million
  • The loss of $272 million was after unusuals of $181 million, and a $125 million write-off of taxation benefits arising from the separation of the operations from Fletcher Challenge group, and have been previously advised to the market.
  • Winstone Wallboards and Golden Bay Cement performed well throughout the year.  Construction, Housing and Distribution improved significantly in the June quarter.  Steel, Aluminium and the South American businesses had disappointing results.

Full details of the announcement are attached.  For further information, please contact:

Bill Roest
Director of Finance
Phone:   +64 9 525 9165
Fax:  +64 9 525 9989