LASCO Manufacturing Limited (LASM) held its Annual General Meeting held today at the Knutsford Court Hotel. Subsequent to the opening remarks by the Executive Chairman, Honourable Lascelles A. Chin and the reading of the auditor’s report, Managing Director, James Rawle made his presentation to shareholders.
In his review of the company’s performance last year, the Managing Director noted, “the year ended March 31, 2017 was an intense one for Lasco Manufacturing Limited. On one hand, the company was absorbing, executing an impressive capital investment program.” The capital investment program according to the Managing Director, comprised of, “state of the art plant equipment and important technology.” This capital investments program totalled approximately, “$1.27 billion in one year,” Mr. Rawle stated. The colossal investment was made to increase capacity, flexibility and efficiencies of the operation positioning the company for future growth.
During the 2016/2017 year the company introduced two new products; Nutrify and iDrade with additional flavours to the iCool line. According to Management Nutrify ia protein intake targeting a niche market to promote a balanced and healthy lifestyle. iDrade was also designed to target consumers with an active lifestyle and provides electrolytes needed to rehydrate the body after strenuous activity. Notwithstanding the introduction of these new products, LASM’s net profit for the year contracted 14% to close at $707.25 million (2016: $826.20 million). This occurred despite revenue climbing 6% or $380 million to $6.9 billion (2016: $6.57 billion).
LASM’s booked an uptick in expenses for the year of 20% due to a significant increase in marketing and promotional investments to support the brands in the local market. The increase in marketing expenses was due to support for brands and new products in both local and export markets. This support led to a 131% increase in selling and promotional expenses to $330.42 million (2016: $142.95 million), while administration expenses rose 5% to $1.16 billion (2016; $1.10 billion).
Mr. Rawle touched on the outlook for the company, indicating that, “the outlook continues to be positive with our objective to achieve growth, improved margins and profits through:
- Operational efficiencies – to deliver lower costs and savings
- Aggressive product innovation and launch of new products to enter new market segments in both powders and liquids.
- Continued investments in our brands
- Growth in exports
The company’s vision is to be a global corporate leader and to match and exceed the highest standards for quality and services. LASM intend to push on with its mission of, “providing quality products and services to customers, ensure profitability and promoted employee developments.” After the conclusion of the Managing Director’s presentation the meeting was handed back to the Chairman for the question and answer section after which the Chairman closed the meeting thanking shareholders for their support during the year and to look forward to and exciting year ahead for Lasco Manufacturing Limited.