Amcor to raise funds

Global packager Amcor says it could raise a A$ 1 billion war chest for acquisitions by selling its 45% stake in Kimberly Clark Australia. Amcor booked a 19.6% increase in interim net profit to A$ 147….

Global packager Amcor says it could raise a A$ 1 billion war chest for acquisitions by selling its 45% stake in Kimberly Clark Australia. Amcor booked a 19.6% increase in interim net profit to A$ 147.1 million for the December half, 2001 on 14 February. Earnings grew 3% to 20.3c a share. However, with Perpetual Amcor Convertible Reset Securities (PACRS) distribution payments of A$ 17.2 million stripped from the result, the profit figure fell to A$ 129.9 million, ahead of the corresponding period“s A$ 123 million and analysts“ forecasts. Managing director Russell Jones was confident Amcor“s businesses could deliver earnings growth again this year. Sales in the half year rose 38% to A$ 3.8 billion and Amcor said the dividend remained constant at 14c, franked to 50%. North American operations recorded a 29.4% increase in profit before interest and tax to A$ 84.1 million due to improved performance at Amcor Twinpak and a good result at CNC. Profit from Amcor“s Metal and Plastic packaging group in Australasia rose 8.7% before interest and tax to A$ 53.6 million, while the fibre packaging division PBIT fell 12.5% to A$ 63.5 million due to a A$ 15 million impact from a five-week strike. Amcor Europe PBIT jumped 83.2% to A$ 43.6 million while Amcor Asia PBIT increased 3.4% to A$ 21.4 million, despite depressed regional economic conditions.