Shares of Nufarm Limited (ASX:NUF) are down today despite a boost to profits. NUF is down 10c, or 1.44 per cent, at $6.84 about half way through trading hours today. The company reported a 41 per cent increase to net profits after tax in a shareholders report today. Group revenues were at $1.18bn, up 4 per cent. Underlying earnings before Interest and Tax (EBIT) came in at $63.4m, up 12 per cent. Nufarm also increased their unfranked interim dividend from 3c to 4c. The company also said that although seed technologies were down, they expected it to pick up for the full year if weather conditions permitted.
Nufarm acting chief executive Greg Hunt also discussed the company’s expansion in Asia. Nufarm has a healthy market share in Indonesia and Malaysia. However, the company believes they are too focused on plantation crops. "Therefore, we need to diversify into other segments and strengthen our presence in other regional markets in order to grow earnings in the region in a meaningful way," Mr Hunt said on Wednesday. “"To that end, investments are being made in new product developments that will allow us to build portfolios to address the rice and vegetable segments.”
The company also discussed weather conditions across the globe. Although dry weather in Queensland and NSW was less than desirable, rain in December and January helped boost business in the late reporting period. They also cited lower crop prices and therefore lower protection sales due to a dry season in Brazil. The company believes weather cycles will contribute to a stronger second half. Nufarm has had a productive year. Nufarm’s share price has advanced 65.38 per cent in the last 12 months. The share price is up 44.09 per cent so far this year.