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BizDay Zimbabwe

Ariston recap pays off

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ARISTON Holdings says there has been significant uplift in output on all farms with a lot more potential going forward as the group’s rehabilitation programme begins to pay off.Giving an update of operations at the group’s annual general meeting on Friday, chief executive Mr Paul Spear said there had been significant growth in operations since the recapitalisation in 2011. Revenue since the US$8 million injection had grown 16 percent to US17,1 million while there had been an increase in consumables and bearer biological assets to 1 088 percent at the end of its financial year in 2013.

Mr Spear said the growth in revenue for the current financial year is expected to be much higher. Capital expenditure had grown 416 percent to US$3,23 million from US$627 000 in 2011. “We were aggressive on the capex but we are slowing down in the year ahead.”
Debt had risen 7 165 percent in the two year period but equity had also gone up 9 573 percent.

With all this in the mix, Mr Spear said there had been significant improvement in the operations. Prospects for another good tea season with much production and improved quality are expected.

Made tea volumes are currently 55 percent above prior year and 20 percent above budget. Mr Spear said the Macadamia fruit was very encouraging and increased yield and quality were also expected.

The group had restructured its trading division Favco with restructuring 90 percent complete. “The new structure now revolves around the marketing of produce from the farms,” said Mr Spear adding that integration with the farms was now at 60 percent.

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