CFI disposes of land for US$3m

CFI CEO Steve Kuipa told shareholders at an annual general meeting last week that inclusive of the latest disposal the group had so far managed to raise US$5,6 million from the disposal of noncore assets.

Kuipa said the group was also looking at raising another US$1,8 million from the disposal of various properties in its retail division.

The CEO said further to the cautionary statement  in January, the investors who had expressed interest in the group’s Crest Poultry division, Victoria Foods as well as in CFI Holdings itself had completed their due diligence exercises last month.

The CFI group had received expressions of interest from some of the investors but more detailed information was needed before final binding offers were received.

“The exercise will be completed by mid-April 2012. Thereafter, the offers will be presented to the board.”

Kuipa said the group used 65% of the PTA US$3,8 million facility.

Victoria Foods was in the process of installing automatic packing machines.  A total four had already being installed while the outstanding line will be installed by the end of April 2012.

Kuipa said 80% of the machinery spares and components required for major refurbishment of the Gweru maize milling plant and the Harare wheat plant have been received. The outstanding spares and machinery were due to be received by this week, he said. 

In the five months to February, turnover for the group grew 20% against prior year to US$48,1 million but margins remained under pressure across the group relative to the comparable period, owing to increased competition and equipment breakdowns, he said.

Kuipa said demand for poultry products remained firm with the group failing to meet demand for table eggs, dressed chickens and stock feeds.

The retail division had a good first quarter, Kuipa said, adding the performance was underpinned by surging volumes in agro-input sales.

However, the specialised division volumes were subdued in the first five months owing to capitalisation challenges and weakened demand given intermittent availability of key product lines.

Meanwhile Fidelity Life said it planned to develop 6 000 high density residential stands in the land it had bought from CFI, adjacent to Harare’s Glen View high density suburb, along the Harare-Masvingo Road. The life assurer said the project was expected to come on board at the end of this year or early next year.

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