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GEL makes profit, targets improved efficiency

marciadottin, [email protected]

GEL makes profit, targets improved  efficiency

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Fresh from earning $34 million in profits at a time when many of its competitors are struggling, Barbadian conglomerate Goddard Enterprises Limited (GEL) is bracing for an “uncertain” 2014.
GEL’s chairman Charles Herbert and managing director Anthony Ali have told shareholders in their newly released annual report to expect continued difficult economic times in the region and elsewhere where the large group of companies operates.
In his first major report since joining the business in August last year, Ali said: “As we look forward to 2014, we recognize that we will continue to operate in an uncertain economic environment but take the view that such uncertainty also presents many opportunities.
“During the coming year, we intend to focus on enhancing our efficiency, maximizing our productivity and improving our cost control mechanisms to ensure that we are poised to capitalize on opportunities as they arise.
“Such focus will also ensure that we are well positioned by the time the markets return to more predictable performance levels.
“More importantly, given our strong balance sheet we will also seek, during this period, to reinvent ourselves, to keep true to the values that have brought us to this point and to create a strategic road map which will allow us to solidify our position in the key markets in which we operate.
Contemporaneously, we will establish strategies that target growth initiatives with concentration on channels and economies that meet our growth expectations,” he added.
Ali said the company also intended to “tighten our corporate governance practices and policies while aligning management skills, competencies and compensation to shareholder expectations with the end goal of maximizing shareholder value”.
The two officials said for the financial year ended September 30, 2013, GEL revenue decreased by 3.7 per cent over the prior year to $962.6 million, a decrease which “generated a gross profit of $357.3 million, which was up over the prior year by 1.6 per cent”.
“Gross profit expressed as a percentage of sales was 37.1 per cent, which was above the 35.2 per cent achieved in 2012.
“This was accomplished despite an economic environment plagued by spiralling costs, increased competitive activity and high volatility in financial markets,” they added. (SC)