Nufarm profit up

Agricultural chemical maker Nufarm has posted a profit rise, despite weaker market conditions and the impact of one-off costs associated with its restructure.

The company said in a statement that net profit for the year to July 31 was $43.22m, a 14.6 per cent increase on the previous year's $37.7m.

Excluding material items, the company’s net profit rose 35.5 per cent to $117.06m.

“The combination of cost savings benefits; margin expansion and revenue growth in a number of the company’s businesses is expected to result in another solid profit performance in 2016,” the statement said.

“This is despite an expectation that general market conditions will continue to be subdued.”

The expectation of an El Niño weather pattern in 2016 is also expected to affect results. The company said it has factored this into its estimates and its target of cost savings of $20m in 2016.

“This weather pattern typically results in drier than normal spring conditions in Eastern Australia; more reliable rainfall patterns in Western Australia; and higher rainfall in South America,” the company said.

“Given Australia is cycling several years of relatively dry spring conditions, the additional impact on the Australian business is expected to be marginal. The impact in Brazil is likely to result in stronger demand for both insecticide and fungicide products.”

Meanwhile, Nufarm revealed that a worker was killed at its manufacturing site in Linz, Austria on September 22.

The company said that it is co-operating with the relevant authorities to fully investigate the circumstances surrounding the death.

Nufarm's Managing Director and CEO, Greg Hunt, said appropriate support is being provided to all employees at the site and to the deceased employee's family.