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Wed 2 Nov 2016 01:59 PM

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UAE food giant Agthia posts 12% rise in nine-month net profit

Abu Dhabi-based company says performance boosted by water business as Al Ain brand grabs highest market share

UAE food giant Agthia posts 12% rise in nine-month net profit

Abu Dhabi-listed food and drinks firm Agthia Group has reported an increase in net profit for the first nine months of 2016 of 12 percent to AED200 million ($54 million).

Net revenues grew 11 percent to AED1.52 billion, driven by a strong performance by the company's water business, with the Al Ain brand gaining its highest-ever volume and value market share at 25.3 percent and 22.2 percent respectively.

The company said earlier this year that it is aiming to double revenues by 2020 through organic growth and acquisitions.

Dhafer Ayed Al Ahbabi, chairman of Agthia, said: “Our results in the past quarter and overall in the first nine months of the year come directly as a result of our strategy to drive our core businesses both in the UAE and regionally, while successfully addressing the performance of our emerging businesses.

"The market sentiment is likely to remain cautious for the coming year; however, our investments and our growth in market share ensure we continue to maintain our momentum.”

Iqbal Hamzah, CEO of Agthia, added: "We remain on track to grow both our top and bottom lines, despite the challenging economic environment and the impact of the subsidy rationalisation.

"Water clearly continues to be a key driver of our growth, and the recent launch of Al Ain ZERO has helped us to further reinforce our leadership in that segment. 

"We expect our planned expansion into new markets will provide additional impetus for this crucial part of the business. Meanwhile, our balance sheet remains strong and healthy and we are well positioned to continue on our overall growth path.”

The water business posted net revenues of AED488 million, an increase of 27 percent over the same period last year, while the dairy business posted AED24 million net revenues, up 34 percent year-on-year.

Agthia’s flour business reported net revenues of AED324 million during the nine-month period, an increase of 2 percent while animal feed, another of the Group’s five core businesses, posted net revenues of AED520 million, up 1 percent.

Agthia said that both its flour and animal feed businesses were subject to a change in the subsidy regime during Q3 that has been in place since 2007 in Abu Dhabi.

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