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Sat 3 Nov 2012 10:22 AM

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UAE's Agthia eyes launch of spring water in GCC

Food and beverage group posts 54% rise in net profit for first nine months of 2012

UAE's Agthia eyes launch of spring water in GCC
(Photo for illustrative purposes only)

UAE-based food and beverage group Agthia is planning to launch a new natural spring water product in the UAE and GCC following its acquisition of a company in Turkey.

Agthia said its rebranding of the recently acquired Pelit Su spring water company was close to completion, while plans to expand regional distribution in Turkey and launch 'natural spring' drinking water in the UAE and wider GCC were underway.

The announcement came as Agthia posted a 54 percent rise in net profit for the first nine months of 2012.

The company, whose products include Al Ain bottled water, Capri-Sun juices, Chiquita juices and Yoplait dairy products, said that net sales during the period rose to AED983m, up 17 percent year-on-year, resulting in net profit of AED92m.

Agthia's sales growth was driven by 24 percent growth achieved by the Consumer Business division and 13 percent growth delivered by the Agri Business division.

Growth was driven by continued strong performance of Agthia's core businesses of bottled water, flour and animal feed, the company said in a statement.

It added that volumes of its recently launched Yoplait fresh dairy products and Chiquita natural juices were "growing progressively" with initiative planned to accelerate the growth.

The company also said it plans to launch a frozen baked product in the second half of 2013, while poultry feed production capacity expansion is on track for completion by the end of 2012.

Rashed Mubarak Al Hajeri, chairman of Agthia Group said: "We are pleased with Agthia's strong overall performance and have had a great year so far.

"Although the commodity market volatility and regional unrest are certainly challenging, yet we are progressing on our long term strategy. We remain optimistic and expect another year of good business performance in 2012."

Ilias Assimakopoulos, CEO of Agthia, added: "Over the past few months, we have focused on both growing our core businesses while driving penetration and distribution of our recently launched brands.

"We have a very strong and healthy balance sheet and we are optimistic and expect another year of good business performance in 2012."

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