Caribbean Cream Limited (KREMI) held their fourth Annual General Meeting (AGM) today, highlighting the company’s successful year. Chairman, Mrs. Carol Clarke Webster opened the meeting stating, “we are proud to have completed another successful year. At the end of the financial year our share price increased to $7.48, up by 76%. Our net profit increased to $173 million. We are also proud to be able to issue our second dividend this year, despite our continued capital investment to encourage new opportunities for further growth.” KREMI paid a total of $0.06 on September 22, 2017 compared to a payment of $0.05 to shareholders on September 23, 2016. The Chairman further noted, “Caribbean Cream has grown significantly since our listing on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange. The growth in our market share, the competence of our managers and staff and the investments in our manufacturing facilities have placed us in a strong position to expand our horizons. While we continue on this path, we are striving to realize our vision of being the number one ice cream company in the Caribbean.”
Following the opening remarks by the Chairman, KREMI’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Christopher Clarke gave a brief presentation on the company’s 2017FY performance. The company continued its growth in 2017 with revenues and net profit climbing 7% and 5% respectively. According to the CEO, “the company continued its strong revenue growth history. This was achieved by increasing sales and market share. Profit before tax increased 5% to just under $173 million.” He further noted, “this good results allowed us the privilege of increasing our dividend payout this year.”
Touching on the company’s performance year to date, the CEO highlighted, “sales for the first quarter were flat, our revenues were greatly affected by heavy rains and flooding.” This led to a 1% growth in revenues which closed the first quarter at $319.26 million (2016: $315.26 million). The CEO further added, “heavy rain not only affects the demand, but also greatly affects our ability to get our products to consumers.” As a result, net profit fell 51% to $34.86 million compared to $71.18 million for the prior year’s corresponding quarter. The CEO attributed the downturn to, “increased costs in inputs such as electricity and labour as well as missing sales targets.” Mr. Clarke has identified this as a, “short term issue which will be resolved within this financial year”.
Within the 2017FY the company completed and moved into its new factory space which increased the production space by 50%. Mr. Clarke indicated, “this puts us closer to being HACCP compliant and should increase efficiency with the improved layout.” Shareholders were then treated to pictures of the new production space which features equipment’s such as tanks which doubles the storage of ice cream mix, and cold storages at the company’s depot. Additionally the CEO noted, “this year, we spent a significant amount of time and effort increasing our presence on social media platforms. Our marketing slogan is ‘Enjoy happy moments.’ We believe our products brings people together and this give our customers a platform to share their happy moments.”
For the upcoming year KREMI has outlined its vision of becoming the number one ice cream company in the Caribbean. The company intends to achieve this by:
- HACCP certification: an international standard defining the requirements for effective control of food safety. According to Mr. Clarke, “we have installed the necessary infrastructure, so now is the time to start the process.
- New products: KREMI has formed a product development committee which has a few potential product on the drawing board. Mr. Clarke noted, “we are the dominant player in the bulk ice cream, but to grow we need to explore other revenue streams
In closing, the CEO, expressed his gratitude on the behalf of the staff members and directors and promised to invest wisely to ensure continued growth and profitability.