Falkland Islands Holdings' shares rose on Monday after it posted an increase in underlying pre-tax profits and looked forward to 'an exciting future'. FIH reported underlying pre-tax profits of £3.29m for the year to the end of March - 1.9% up on last time.
Group revenue increased by 4.4% to £35.6m but underlying basic earnings per share fell to 21.6p (2012: 26.3p) reflecting the 33% increase to share capital following the equity issue in July 2012. Cash balances totaled £11.4m (2012: £2.8m).
Chairman David Hudd said: We ended the year in a strong financial position with available cash of over £11.0m. The group is now well positioned for the growth the Falkland Islands will experience in the build-up to oil production.
Momart enjoyed a particularly good year with each of its business streams performing well. The company's reputation for service and technical competence was endorsed by the prestigious exhibition contracts secured and relationships were strengthened with leading auction houses and galleries.
The Portsmouth Harbour Ferry Company suffered a fall in passenger numbers, however, we believe this is attributable to changes in military travel arrangements and expect this to be a one off step change. We are looking forward to the introduction of a new ferry which is being commissioned for delivery in 2014.
The Falkland's economy is on the threshold of a decade of dramatic growth with the development of the Sea Lion discovery. We are focused on ensuring that the Group is able to exploit the resulting opportunities. The Falkland Islands Company is unique with a platform of leading retail and support service businesses, a significant land bank, a committed workforce and the funds to develop them”.
Chairman Hudd stated that the FIC are investing the cash raised last year in developing their property assets and with their construction partners they are tendering for infrastructure contracts. Mr Hudd noted that the new port planned for Port William represents a significant opportunity for the company as they own 300 acres adjoining the site.
We have an exciting future in prospect.