17 Feb 2021

Record half-year profit for Ebos

11:42 am on 17 February 2021

The healthcare and animal products company Ebos has gone from strength to strength during the pandemic, posting a record half-year profit.

Animates Manukau, South Auckland.

Photo: RNZ / Dan Cook

Its net profit was up 13.7 percent to A$92.8 million for the six months ended December from $A81.7m a year ago.

The company's revenue December rose 6.3 percent to A$4.7 billion, as demand for its healthcare and animal care products were strong throughout the pandemic.

The company owns a wide range of businesses in wholesale and retail pharmaceutical supplies, health supplements such as Red Seal, petfoods and the Animates retail chain, and has a track record of double digit growth on the back of buying and quickly settling businesses into its structure.

"Both our Healthcare and Animal Care segments recorded very strong growth and contributed to the overall result. This again reinforces the strength of our diverse portfolio of businesses," chief executive John Cullity said.

Demand for animal care products had been particularly strong, with revenue rising nearly 16 percent to A$243.8m.

"Covid-19 has further accelerated these trends as people have spent more time at home with their pets," Cullity said.

The company spent A$23m over the period making acquisitions, snapping up the vet distribution business, CH2, and the medical technology distributor, Cryomed.

"The Cryomed acquisition in the medical devices sector and the acquisition of CH2's vet distribution business each strengthen our existing presence in those sectors and are EPS accretive to EBOS shareholders."

Last year, the company acquired a distribution facility in Auckland to support the growth of its consumer products business.

However, revenue growth in this sector was down by 10 percent as the pandemic impacted sales through the daigou channel.

The company said earnings growth in January was consistent with levels seen in the past six months.

Ebos will pay an interim dividend of NZ 42.5 cents per share, an increase of 13 percent.