Soda exit fuels $28m Penrice loss
Penrice Soda has posted a second consecutive $28 million first-half loss, driven by write-downs on its loss-making Adelaide soda ash plant. Penrice shares fell 5 per cent to 9.5¢ on Friday, having been at 14.5¢ in January before the closure of the plant was revealed. The dire state of Australia's manufacturing and construction sector led to Penrice deciding to shut the chemical plant in June, costing 60 jobs. It will keep making more profitable sodium bicarbonate for pharmaceutical and food companies, and operate its marble and limestone mine. Chief executive Guy Roberts, pictured, said the company could not get on with its restructure quickly enough. Penrice's net debt is $98.1 million, from $93.6 million six months earlier.
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