I am pleased to report an after tax profit of $275.7m for the year ended December 31, 2013, an increase of $76.6m over the last financial year. Revenue grew by $14.9m and gross profit by $24.3m compared to 2012. This signifies the strength of our brands in an increasingly competitive environment.
Brand and resource investment have been undertaken to support the growth of the business, and we are pleased to report a healthy return on this investment as our ‘Results from continuing operations’ has increased by $27.9m (16.6%) against last year.
We continue to realize significant growth of our export bitters business through direct entry into new markets and improvements to our distribution networks within existing established markets. Our bulk rum business focus has shifted from high volume commodity trade to more profitable branded business, as we seek to enhance our brand presence within every sector of the spirits industry.
Our year end EPS of $1.34 has been the result of operating profits as well as gains from non-recurring transactions during 2013. In consideration of the Company’s strong performance over the past year, the Board has approved a final dividend of 12¢ per share as well as a special dividend of 4¢ per share in recognition of the extraordinary gains earned from the disposal of our equity-accounted investment. Together with the interim dividend of 8¢ per share paid in August 2013 this brings the total dividend declared in respect of 2013 to 24¢ per share. We extend our gratitude to our valued stakeholders for your continued support of our brands and look forward to another prosperous year ahead.
March 19, 2014