30 Mar 2015

Synlait sink into the red

1:58 pm on 30 March 2015

Shares in Synlait Milk took a tumble after the South Island dairy company posted a half year loss and slashed its full year profit guidance.

Synlait is blaming the falling New Zealand dollar, as well as registration delays in getting its infant formula to China, for the $6.4 million after tax loss for the six months to 31 January.

Unrealised currency losses of $6.8 million hit hard on its bottom line, but the company also faced production delays due to teething problems at a new milk plant.

The market had been expecting Synlait to make an after tax profit of around $20 million this year, but Synlait's managing director John Penno said that was no longer realistic.

"With the challenges we have faced in H1 we are bringing back expectations for the full year a little bit.

"In the scheme of those though, I think everyone recognises that for us, it really is a transition year with so much new process going on, new products being made...we're growing by 50 percent through this 18 month period....in a set of market conditions which is difficult for everybody," Mr Penno said.

Mr Penno said Synlait now expected to make an after tax profit of between $10 million to $15 million for the 2015 financial year.

The company's share price fell as much as 12 percent immediately after the announcement.

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