BRIEFS

Carsales revs up

Carsales revs up

Carsales.com.au has grown full-year profit by 17 per cent to $83.5million in the year to June 30, and is focused on driving its business into overseas markets. The number of cars advertised was higher than in the previous year, and revenue grew by 17 per cent. Carsales recently bought into two offshore counterparts - Brazil's WebMotors and iCar Asia, which operates auto sale sites across Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.

Skilled profit lift

The way to continue working as a contractor to big miners is to take a 25 to 30 per cent cut on your profit margins, according to Skilled Group boss Mick McMahon. Speaking after his company reported an improved $56.2 million net profit for the 2013 financial year, Mr McMahon said haircuts on contracts had become commonplace across the mining sector as companies looked to reduce costs where possible. As one of the larger contractors, Mr McMahon said, Skilled was trying to take a long-term view and be one of the companies left standing when the current mining sector crunch is over.

Back in black

Australia's biggest food company, Goodman Fielder, has returned to profit after a restructure that left shareholders without a dividend last year. Goodman reported a net profit of $102.5 million in the year to June 30, compared with a $146.9 million loss a year earlier. It will also resume paying dividends at 3¢ a share, unfranked. Chief executive Chris Delaney said the strategy to cut costs and reduce debt had helped Goodman Fielder to achieve the turnaround.

Primary return

Medical centres, pathology and imaging services provider Primary Health Care has boosted its payout to shareholders substantially, after lifting its annual profit by 28.7 per cent. Primary on Wednesday booked a net profit of $150.1 million for the 2013 financial year, up from $116.6 million in the previous year. Primary will pay shareholders a fully franked final dividend of 11¢ a share, up from 6¢ a share in the prior corresponding period.

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