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Marsden Maritime posts 5.7% gain in 1H profit, expects FY earnings in line with last year

Marsden Maritime Holdings, which owns half of Whangarei's Northport, posted a 5.7 percent rise in first-half profit and said annual earnings will probably be in line with last year on similar cargo volumes.

The Whangarei-based company said profit rose to $4 million, or 9.75 cents per share, in the six months ended Dec. 31, from $3.8 million, or 9.22 cents, in the year earlier period. Annual profit will be "comparable" with the previous year when it posted profit of about $8 million, it said in a statement.

In the first half, profit from the port operations increased 7.8 percent to $4.5 million, as it counted all its revenue as earnings and noted no expenses except $1,000 of tax, compared with last year's $356,000 of costs and $17,000 in tax. The company said cargo volumes slid 2.6 percent to 1.616 million tonnes in the first half, and it expects annual cargo volumes through the port to track "at a similar level" to last year when it handled a record 3.282 million tonnes

The company's property holdings, which include an industrial subdivision and farmland at Marsden Point, turned to a profit of $224,000 from a loss of $76,000 the year earlier.

Its Marsden Cove Marina and commercial complex, acquired in July last year, had a profit of $26,000 on revenue of $312,000.

The company will pay a dividend of 5.25 cents per share on March 20, up from 5 cents in the year earlier period.

Shares in the company last traded at $2.80, and have gained 3.7 percent so far this year.