Toll looking to plug its Defence gap

Toll Holdings has won more work from helping to handle asylum seekers overseas but concedes it is not yet enough to offset the end of a large contract to assist Australian troops in East Timor.

Toll Holdings has won more work from helping to handle asylum seekers overseas but concedes it is not yet enough to offset the end of a large contract to assist Australian troops in East Timor.

The transport and logistics company is hunting for new contracts to bolster its resources division, which is bearing the brunt of the mining sector slowdown.

Toll chief executive Brian Kruger said the company recently won a contract to help in the accommodation of refugees but the challenge would be to gain more work to offset the loss of the Defence contract.

Toll's remote logistics business has been involved in work on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea and Nauru, where Australia's main offshore detention centres are located.

The Melbourne company reported a rise of almost 4 per cent in earnings before interest and tax to $426 million for the year to June, slightly ahead of market expectations. Toll has adopted a cautious approach to the new financial year. It has not given guidance, but Mr Kruger conceded soft demand across many of its markets would put pressure on margins.

Mr Kruger said the company's focus would remain on gaining more value from existing businesses, emphasising that it had made only one small acquisition in the past year. His position contrasts with his predecessor, Paul Little, who pursued an aggressive acquisition strategy.

Toll posted a 29 per cent rise in net profit to $92 million for the year. Revenue was flat at $8.7 billion. The statutory profit had $191 million in one-off charges, including a write-down in the value of shipping vessels in its marine business in Asia.

Its global forwarding division had pre-tax earnings falling to $6.3 million from $20.6 million a year earlier.

Toll will pay a final dividend of 14.5¢ a share on October 21 - up from 13.5¢ previously - which takes the payout for the year to 27¢.

Toll also released its remuneration report on Thursday which revealed Mr Kruger received a total pay package of almost $4 million for the year, up from $2.6 million in 2011-12. It was his first full year as CEO.