Downturn does not dampen record-level Ansa McAL earnings

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago, Thursday, March 28, 2013 – The Ansa McAL Group earned  over TT$600 million more in 2012 than it did in 2011 despite tough economic times.

The Trinidadian conglomerate earned TT $5.9 billion in revenue for the financial year ended December 31, 2012, a significant gain over 2011’s revenue total of $5.3 billion. 

Gerry Brooks the group’s chief operating officer has called the figure “the highest revenue in the group’s history.” 

Speaking at the presentation of ANSA McAL’s 2012 year- end audited financial results this week, Brooks said growth in revenue was equivalent to TT $626 million, and he acknowledged that this was achieved during one of the worst economic periods in history. 

“2012 is set against the backdrop of a very difficult and volatile international environment. In the Caribbean…it’s a case of limited fiscal space, high public debt, reduced per-capita income and many Caribbean governments seeking to re-negotiate their debt levels, and their debt arrangements in 2012,” said Brooks. 

“From a Trinidad and Tobago perspective, we had flat GDP growth, we had a deficit budget of $7 billion, we had the TCL strike which impaired our GDP levels as a country and in the construction sector in the first quarter and second quarter of 2012, and we had an adverse industrial relations climate. You saw evidence of that with the (recent) Petrotrin/OWTU strike,” he added.  

However Brooks declared that having navigated recessions and economic challenges over its 133 year history, the group “has the capacity, has the resolve, and has the ability to do so again as we move forward, and to also identify and pursue commercial opportunities as they arise.”

During his presentation, Brooks attributed the increased revenue mostly to their new operations that they acquired over the last few years, including TT $372 million of which came from new business growth through the Barbados-based Standards Distributors and Trimart supermarkets. 

“Standards Distributors would have contributed TT$190 million, Trimart would have contributed $178 million. The other component of that $626 million…came from organic growth, which is approximately $258 million. The revenue story is a good mix of organic and inorganic growth,” Brooks stated. 

Profit before tax was TT $952 million, up five percent over 2011, while earnings per share rose seven percent from $3.46 the previous year to $3.69. Cash generated from operations also increased, by nine percent or $1.3 billion, with total assets now standing at $11.3 billion. 

There was a slight decline in the group’s gross profit margin, from 40.5 percent in 2011 to 39.9 percent in 2012. 

However Brooks assured shareholders and financial analysts present yesterday this was “influenced very deliberately by a reduction in some of our prices, inclusive of our (construction) block prices. They were also all affected by raw material price increases in things like malt, newsprint, salt and titanium dioxide in 2012.”  Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)