BRIEFS

MEDIA

MEDIA

Big hit at APN

The week has gone from bad to worse for APN News & Media as the trans-Tasman publisher reported a big loss amid further write-downs on its newspaper assets. Having lost a chief executive, chairman and three board members this week, APN on Thursday posted a net loss of $455.8 million for the year to December. It included a $151 million impairment charge on top of the $485 million impairment announced in August. Excluding one-offs, profit was $54 million, down from $78 million.

MINERAL SANDS

Iluka trims sails

Iluka Resources is confident of a recovery in the mineral sands industry but it won't come quickly enough to save 200 jobs it has decided to axe. Iluka reported net profit fell 33 per cent to $363.2 million last year, from a record $541.8 million the previous year. Production will halve again this year to 420,000 tonnes.

GAMBLING

Tatts growing

The lotteries and wagering operator Tatts Group says its online operations are growing strongly, and it is looking at further opportunities in the area. Tatts booked a net profit for the six months to December of $128.3 million, down 23.1 per cent. The result was hit by the end of its poker machine operations in August last year, when its licence in Victoria expired.

FOOD MANUFACTURING

Bega sales up

Bega Cheese says it is well placed to meet demand for its products from Asia and the Middle East after unveiling a strong first half. The dairy co-operative reported a 13.6 per cent increase in net profit to $15.9 million for the six months to December, on sales of $491.3 million, up 9.6 per cent.

FRANCHISING

RFG positive

Retail Food Group is optimistic about growth after reporting flat first-half profit of $14.6 million. The franchisor of brands such as Donut King, Michel's Patisserie and Brumby's said revenue was $60 million, up 21.2 per cent. Excluding one-offs such as corporate restructuring and redundancy costs, profits were 13.3 per cent up, at a record $27.9 million.

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