Thursday, 30 August 2018 11:55

Rubber firm boots up profit

Written by  Nigel Malthus
Skellerup is celebrating a record profit. Skellerup is celebrating a record profit.

In the year Skellerup’s iconic Red Band gumboots turn 60, the company is celebrating a record profit.

Tabling its annual result for the year ended June 30, the plastics and rubber manufacturer reported revenue of $240.4 million, up 14% on the previous corresponding period (pcp), record earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) of $39.8m (+21% on pcp) and a record net profit after tax of $27.3m (+23% on pcp).

The company’s agri division, which makes Red Bands, milking platform wheels, milking cup liners, tubing, pumps, heat exchangers and teat sprayers, contributed $22.8m to EBIT, up 15%.

The industrial division, which makes components such as seals and valves -- often critical parts in other company’s products -- contributed $20.8m, up 21%.

Chief executive David Mair said the agri division achieved an excellent “record result, continuing steady growth particularly in global markets”. 

“We develop innovative and high quality dairy components and specialist footwear designed and manufactured to meet the specific needs of customers. 

“The completion of our new factory at Wigram in 2016 and the subsequent sale and disposal of the Woolston site have enabled our agri team to develop an external focus on customers and growth. We are beginning to see the benefits of this strategy, with revenue increasing by 12% to $89m in the current year.”

Mair said New Zealand is agri’s largest single market, but international markets contribute at least half the revenue and have growth prospects. 

“This is driven by a growing Asian middle class and global demand for milk protein. Our dairy rubberware, milk filters and animal hygiene products play a crucial role in maintaining milk quality and protecting animal health.”

Mair noted Skellerup’s fame in NZ for its Red Band gumboots, first made in October 1958.  

“Leveraging this long-established technical know-how we develop and grow our footwear range, including our fire-fighters’ boots that are worn in NZ and Australia and now by many UK fire brigades.” 

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