NatFoods plans $8m capex

HARARE - National Foods Holdings Limited (NatFoods) plans an $8,3 million capital expenditure targeted at upgrading its flour and maize units in the eight months to June 2015.

Michael Lashbrook, the group’s acting chief executive, said a significant amount of the funds will be invested in their flour business.

“…about $4 million will go into our flour business as we fix the platform. This is an on-going process,” he told shareholders at an annual general meeting yesterday.

He said about $1 million will be channelled into the group’s maize business.

Lashbrook added that they were working with the Grain Millers

Association Zimbabwe (GMAZ) and government to reach a compromise price for maize.

“We have procured 20 000 tonnes of maize at the current price, but we are closely working with government and GMAZ to come up with a sustainable solution,” he said.

In September, government ordered grain buyers to buy the commodity at $390 per metric tonne, a price grain buyers argued was unviable.

Lashbrook said the group had acquired 12 000 tonnes of wheat from local producers, from a contracted 5 000 hactres.

Shareholders also approved a share buyback of not more than 10 percent of the group’s ordinary shares.

“The maximum and minimum prices respectively, at which such ordinary shares may be acquired, will be weighed average of the market price at which such ordinary shares are traded on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange…”

According to Todd Moyo, NatFoods’ chairperson, the stock feeds producer recorded a revenue growth of 11 percent, on an increase of volumes sold of eight percent to prior year comparative.

A non-recurring profit of $1,5 million was realised after the disposal of some property assets and overall profit achieved stood at $21,7 million, 26 percent higher than the previous year.

In the ended financial year the group invested $3,6 million on completed capital projects with another $3,6 million of approved capital expenditure projects expected to roll over into the current financial year.

Directors elected to transfer to distributable reserves, a portion of non-distributable reserves relating to the remaining foreign currency conversions amounting to $24,7 million.

“This foreign currency conversion reserve arose as result of the change in functional currency from the local currency to the United

States Dollar and has been in existence since the change-over period,” Moyo said.

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