The Seven Group, billionaire Kerry Stoke’s ASX-listed diversified investment company, posted a $41 million loss for the half year to December.
The result, weighed down by a $139.6 million downgrade in the value of its holding in Seven West Media, compares to a profit of $7.1 million for the same six months the year before.
Earlier this month Seven West Media posted a 90% drop in first half profit to $12.4 million mainly due to impairments related to Yahoo7, the failed Presto joint venture, selling its stake in Sky News, and offloading youth magazine titles.
Without significant items of $145 million, the underlying net profit was up 7.03% to $103.2 million.
Revenue was down 4.8% to $1.302 billion.
However, the payout to shareholders has been maintained. The company declared a steady fully franked interim dividend of 20 cents a share.
CEO Ryan Stokes, the son of chairman Kerry, says the mining production cycle is supporting parts and component demand growth as customers continue to focus on costs and push productivity targets.
“We are particularly pleased with the performance of our Coates Hire (a 45% shareholding) and China businesses which have benefitted from increased infrastructure demand,” he says.
The company upgraded full year guidance, with underlying EBIT (earnings before interest and tax) expected to be 5% to 10% up on the previous year.
EBIT for the half year was up 5% to $175.8 million.
Seven Group’s holdings include WesTrac, the Caterpillar dealer, oil and gas producer SGH Energy, and AllightSykes, a supplier of lighting towers, generators and pumps.
The company also has 41% of Seven West Media, which includes the Seven Network, West Australian Newspapers, Pacific Magazines and Yahoo!7.
Here’s a summary of the financials for the half year: