Interim Results

LENDU HOLDINGS PLC OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF IRRIGATED-COTTON, BEEF-CATTLE AND CEREAL FARMS, COMPRISING 26,000 HECTARES, IN QUEENSLAND AND NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIA Announcement of unaudited interim results for the six months ended 31 December 2002 Highlights from the chairman's statement and unaudited interim results as follows * Farm loss, as normal, recorded in first half since Group's main income, from cotton, received in second half * Profit before tax of £1,000, compared with loss of £355,000 in 2001, owing to sale of investments realising profit of £648,000 * Transfer to Alternative Investment Market and Warendi acquisition successfully completed in August and September 2002 respectively * Reduced area of 1,320 hectares of cotton planted in September owing to Australia's drought * Harvesting due to commence shortly and 10,000-bale crop hoped for. 6,500 bales sold to date at A$515 per bale * Cattle selling programme delayed by drought shortly to be resumed * Since period end, sale of balance of investments completed, realising further profit of £393,000 * Farm loss expected for the year but likely profit before tax as a result of investment disposals CHAIRMAN'S STATEMENT REVIEW OF THE PERIOD The first half proved both fruitful and challenging. It encompassed the acquisition of Warendi, the successful transfer of the Company to the Alternative Investment Market ("AIM") and the start of one of the most severe droughts experienced in Australia in over a century. Fortunately, the Group's properties were less severely affected by this than many others. Whilst it is naturally pleasing to record a small pre-tax profit, compared with a loss for the first half of last year of £355,000, this was attributable to the exceptional sale of investments, to which I refer in more detail below. A farm loss was, as usual, recorded since the majority of the farm's income, arising from cotton sales, is not received until the second half. Direct cotton costs are carried forward into the second half so that they are matched against the cotton income but most of the other overheads are charged as they are incurred, thereby giving rise to a loss. The farm loss was higher than last year because it included all the overheads of the newly-acquired Warendi. In view of the difficult season, an operating loss is expected for the year. However, this is likely to be more than offset by the exceptional gain on the disposal of investments. Cotton In view of the drought and the low level of water in the farm reservoirs, only 1,320 hectares of cotton were planted on Gubbagunyah/Oonavale and Warendi, less than half of what would have been planted if the reservoirs had been full. The extreme heat and dry soil conditions meant that more water than usual had to be released for each irrigation, hence causing concern that there would be insufficient water to complete the full irrigation programme for the season. In the event, however, some welcome rains were received in December and, more recently, in late February/early March, denoting a probable end to the drought. As a result, about 90% of the crop will have received a full irrigation by the end of the season and, although it is difficult to predict the yield before harvesting has commenced, it is hoped that a crop of some 10,000 bales will be achieved. The world cotton market has been reasonably buoyant and to date 6,500 bales of the 2003 crop have been sold forward at an average price of A$515 per bale, compared with the average price attained for the 2002 crop of A$463. Cereal and other crops A relatively small income, amounting to A$196,355, was derived from cereal and other crops, compared with A$171,815 for the same period last year. This year some 480 hectares of sorghum were planted in the irrigation areas but did not receive any irrigations. Harvesting has recently commenced. Cattle A cattle trading profit of A$546,539 was recorded, compared with A$612,808 a year ago. As I referred to in the 2002 annual report, the new strategy with regard to the cattle is to sell the existing herd and grass-feed young cattle owned by other operators who will pay a fee based on weight gain. This has been decided partly in order to reduce the increased debt level assumed with the acquisition of Warendi and partly because, as the pastures at Woodlands/Flinton are upgraded, they are becoming of too high a quality on which to continue to run a breeding herd. The selling programme was delayed as a result of the widespread drought conditions, impacting downwards on cattle values. Fortunately, as a result of the December rains, we were not forced sellers of the herd. Now that a significant amount of rain has recently been received in Australia, cattle values have started to rise again and the selling programme should shortly be resumed. Mount Hope The small property, Mount Hope, has now been placed on the market. It is planned to retain part of its water entitlement and to achieve some A$600,000 from the sale of the property and the remaining water. Share sales During the first half, a substantial part of the Group's shares in Rowe Evans Investments PLC and Bertam Holdings PLC was disposed of realising a total profit of £648,000. Since the period end, the balance of the shares in these two companies has been sold, realising a further profit of £393,000. P E HADSLEY-CHAPLIN Chairman 14 March 2003 The board announces the following unaudited results CONSOLIDATED PROFIT AND LOSS ACCOUNT FOR THE SIX MONTHS ENDED 31 DECEMBER 2002 6 months 6 months Year ended ended ended 31 December 31 December 30 June 2002 2001 2002 £'000 £'000 £'000 Turnover 322 324 4,105 Cost of sales (664) (500) (2,859) -------- -------- -------- Farm (loss)/profit (342) (176) 1,246 Administrative expenses (181) (123) (194) -------- -------- -------- Operating (loss)/profit (523) (299) 1,052 Exceptional item - sale of fixed- asset Investments 648 - - -------- -------- -------- Profit/(loss) on ordinary activities 125 (299) 1,052 before interest Income from fixed-asset 2 12 50 investments Interest receivable and similar 2 22 - income Interest payable and similar (128) (90) (187) charges -------- -------- -------- Profit/(loss) on ordinary activities before taxation 1 (355) 915 Tax charge on profit/(loss) on ordinary activities - - (145) -------- -------- -------- Profit/(loss) on ordinary activities 1 (355) 770 after taxation Equity minority interests 81 50 (104) -------- -------- -------- Profit/(loss) on ordinary activities attributable to the members of 82 (305) 666 Lendu Holdings PLC Equity dividend proposed - - (337) -------- -------- -------- Profit/(loss) retained for the financial period/year 82 (305) 329 ======== ======== ======== Basic and diluted earnings/(loss) per 5p share - pence 0.61 (2.26) 4.94 ======== ======== ======== All operations are classed as continuing. Exchange rates £1 = Australian - average 2.83 2.81 2.70 Dollar - period/year 2.87 2.86 2.77 end ======== ======== ======== CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEET AT 31 DECEMBER 2002 31 31 December 30 June December 2002 2001 2002 £'000 £'000 £'000 Fixed assets Tangible assets 15,218 10,592 11,268 Investments 107 253 241 -------- -------- -------- 15,325 10,845 11,509 -------- -------- -------- Current assets Stocks 784 1,050 553 Debto - due within one year 259 120 537 rs - due after more than one 2 2 2 year Cash at bank and in hand 412 32 123 -------- -------- -------- 1,457 1,204 1,215 -------- -------- -------- Creditors: Amounts falling due within one year Bank loans and overdraft 5,090 1,259 147 Trade creditors 194 290 214 Other creditors including taxation and 1,760 1,682 1,804 social security Obligations due under hire- purchase contracts 22 45 47 Equity dividend proposed - - 337 -------- -------- -------- 7,066 3,276 2,549 -------- -------- -------- Net current liabilities (5,609) (2,072) (1,334) -------- -------- -------- Total assets less current 9,716 8,773 10,175 liabilities Creditors: Amounts falling due after (38) (43) (46) more than one year Provisions for liabilities and (139) - (147) charges -------- -------- -------- 9,539 8,730 9,982 Equity minority interests (678) (612) (800) -------- -------- -------- 8,861 8,118 9,182 ======== ======== ======== Capital and reserves Called-up share capital 682 673 674 Share premium account 946 876 876 Revaluation reserve 2,830 2,840 2,986 Profit and loss account 4,403 3,729 4,646 -------- -------- -------- Total equity shareholders' funds 8,861 8,118 9,182 ======== ======== ======== Reconciliation of movements in shareholders' funds for the period/year Profit/(loss) attributable to the members 82 (305) 666 of the Company Equity dividend - - (337) -------- -------- -------- 82 (305) 329 Equity shares issued 78 3 4 Other recognised gains and losses relating (481) (260) 169 to the period/year -------- -------- ------- Net (reduction in)/addition to equity (321) (562) 502 shareholders' funds Opening equity shareholders' 9,182 8,680 8,680 funds -------- -------- -------- Closing equity shareholders' 8,861 8,118 9,182 funds ======== ======== ======== CONSOLIDATED CASH-FLOW STATEMENT FOR THE SIX MONTHS ENDED 31 DECEMBER 2002 6 months 6 months Year ended ended ended 31 December 31 December 30 June 2002 2001 2002 £'000 £'000 £'000 Reconciliation of operating (loss)/profit To net cash (outflow)/inflow from operating activities Operating (loss)/profit (523) (299) 1,052 Depreciation charges 129 124 248 Gain on sale of tangible fixed - - (14) assets Provision for impairment of - - 13 investments Increase in stocks (231) (586) (89) Decrease/(increase) in debtors 277 (70) (487) (Decrease)/increase in (17) 158 83 creditors Exchange differences (46) (8) 29 -------- -------- -------- Net cash (outflow)/inflow from operating activities (411) (681) 835 -------- -------- -------- Returns on investments and servicing of finance Income from fixed-asset 2 12 50 investments Interest received 2 22 - Interest paid (77) (50) (113) -------- ------- -------- Net cash outflow on returns on investments and servicing of finance (73) (16) (63) -------- -------- -------- Capital expenditure and financial investment Purchase of tangible fixed (4,653) (151) (420) assets Sale of tangible fixed assets 2 8 29 Purchase of other fixed-asset (4) - - investments Sale of other fixed-asset 783 - - investments -------- -------- -------- Net cash outflow from capital expenditure (3,872) (143) (391) and financial investment -------- -------- -------- Equity dividend paid (259) (31) (31) -------- -------- -------- Net cash (outflow)/inflow (4,615) (871) 350 before financing -------- -------- -------- Financing New borrowings - commercial 5,157 822 1,673 bills Capital element of hire- (45) (56) (59) purchase payments Repayment of borrowings - (244) - (1,985) commercial bills -------- -------- -------- Net cash inflow/(outflow) from 4,868 766 (371) financing -------- -------- -------- Increase/(decrease) in cash 253 (105) (21) ======== ======== ======== Reconciliation of net cash flow to movement in net debt Increase/(decrease) in cash 253 (105) (21) Cash (inflow)/outflow from (4,868) (766) 371 financing -------- -------- -------- (4,615) (871) 350 Inception of new hire-purchase (14) (53) (55) contracts Translation differences 87 58 (34) -------- -------- -------- Movement in net debt (4,542) (866) 261 Net debt at 1 July (1,580) (1,841) (1,841) -------- -------- -------- Net debt at 31 December/30 (6,122) (2,707) (1,580) June ======== ======== ======== NOTES 1) Statutory information The financial information for the six-month periods ended 31 December 2001 and 2002 has been neither audited nor reviewed by the Group's auditors and does not constitute accounts within the meaning of section 240 of the Companies Act 1985. The financial information for the year ended 30 June 2002 is abridged from the statutory accounts which have been reported on by the Group's auditors, Deloitte & Touche, and which have been filed with the Registrar of Companies. The report of the auditors thereon was unqualified and did not contain a statement under section 237(2) or (3) of the Companies Act 1985. 2) Accounting policies These interim accounts have been prepared on the basis of accounting policies as set out in the annual financial statements at 30 June 2002. 3) Distribution The company will be circulating its interim report to shareholders forthwith and copies may be obtained from M.P.Evans (UK) Limited, 3 Clanricarde Gardens, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN1 1HQ. By order of the board M.P.Evans (UK) Limited Secretaries 14 March 2003 ------------------------------------------------------------ This information was brought to you by Waymaker http://www.waymaker.net The following files are available for download: http://www.waymaker.net/bitonline/2003/03/13/20030313BIT00940/wkr0001.doc http://www.waymaker.net/bitonline/2003/03/13/20030313BIT00940/wkr0002.pdf

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