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Spicers Canada Posts Positive Earnings

February 20, 2013

PaperlinX Limited of Australia this morning released interim results for the first half of its fiscal year, which included positive earnings for Spicers Canada and provided details about the Canadian operation’s recent restructuring efforts.

For the first half of its current fiscal year, ended December 31, 2012, Spicers Canada’s earnings received a boost as the operation reported an underlying EBIT of $5.2 million, which increased from $3.6 million in prior corresponding period. Spicers Canada did see its revenues decline from $219.4 million in the prior corresponding period to $211.6 million in its most recent interim fiscal period.

“Spicers is very pleased with our continued progress in improving profitability for the company,” says Cory Turner, who spoke with PrintAction this morning about the results.

“Our recent reorganization,” continues Turner, “while always unfortunate as employees lose their positions, is a clear indication that despite significant financial improvement the company will continue to challenge its internal cost structure while ensuring a reliable service platform delivers solutions that contribute positively to our customers’ success.”

The recent restructuring of Spicers Canada resulted in the laying off of 50 employees, nine of which were temporary positions. During this morning’s interim financial report presentation by Dave Allen, CEO of PaperlinX Limited, it was noted that the Canadian operation put in a strong performance along with region of Australia, New Zealand and Asia (denoted as ANZA).

PaperlinX Limited, as a whole, reported a statutory loss after tax of AUD$57.3 million for the six months to 31 December 2012. This includes an impairment charge of AUD $24.7 million and compares to a loss of AUD $60.9 million for the prior corresponding period.

Allen pointed out that the poor overall results reflect legacy-operating structures in Europe, which are now being addressed. “Actions taken during the half have laid the foundations for PaperlinX to return to profitability in 2014,” stated Allen. “Canada and ANZA continue to be our strongest performers and we will take the learnings from these regions regarding a single brand to market to Europe and the UK.

“Combined with the significant restructuring well underway in Europe and the UK and the investment for growth in packaging and sign and display across all regions, this positions PaperlinX for a turnaround in financial performance.”

During the financial presentation, PaperlinX noted its Canadian operations, while planning to expand its paper offerings in 2013, will also emphasis growth in the sign and display and industrial packaging segments. The Spicers Canada operation, it was noted, also expects immediate positive results from new consumable partnerships.

Last week, PrintAction reported that Kodak had expanded its distribution partnership with Spicers Canada and ended its long-standing distribution through Heidelberg Canada. While Spicers had previously distributed Kodak plates, CTP and workflow in Canada, in addition to the NexPress line, the company will now have additional access to Kodak’s inkjet printing and packaging portfolios.

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