ABN Newswire http://www.abnnewswire.net Tue, 22 May 2018 01:23:13 newsroom@abnnewswire.net newsroom@abnnewswire.net 60 <![CDATA[ Ricegrowers Ltd (NSX:RGWB) Strong Riverina Harvest Ahead with Plenty of Opportunity - CEO Message ]]> en92654 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/92654/ Fri, 6 Apr 2018 10:38:44 GMT Harvest has started across the Riverina earlier than usual thanks to a great growing season with warmer than average temperatures. We are on track to achieve our forecast of a 600,000 tonne crop and from my early harvest experience I believe we can all expect excellent yields.

One of the important initiatives SunRice (National Stock Exchange:RGWB) offers to encourage rice production in the Riverina is GrowRice. GrowRice provides up to $1,000 per contracted hectare at a competitive interest rate prior to or during the growing season to assist with the purchase of water and other crop inputs, with repayments being deducted from your first harvest payment. I have been really pleased to hear how many growers make use of GrowRice and benefit from this initiative. A good example of this is former NRL footy star-turned rice grower Ryan McGoldrick and his wife Rosanna from Coleambally, who took advantage of SunRice's GrowRice funding facility to purchase water so they could plant their second ever crop of rice. In a time when many young people are swapping their rural lives for the city, it's wonderful Ryan and Rosanna can see a bright future in rice and the Riverina - read more about Ryan and Rosanna's story below. As we look beyond harvest and start planning for C19, I'd strongly encourage you all to look at GrowRice and see how it might assist your efforts to grow rice. For more details and eligibility criteria, visit http://www.abnnewswire.net/lnk/9TMAJ29D

These initiatives are strengthened by our focus on doing everything we can to deliver on the core objectives of our new five-year strategy: improving paddy prices and shareholder returns, as reinforced in CEO Rob Gordon's message below. As he explains, we're expecting a key driver of this to be the ability to market premium rice from the Riverina, to meet global consumers' increasing demand for quality, 'clean and green', healthy products.

As such, we're encouraging you to grow premium, high-value varietals such as medium grain, Low GI, Opus and Koshihikari.

Considering this, the Board was delighted to be able to announce last month a further $15 per tonne uplift to the lower end of the C17 paddy price range, with the estimated range for medium grain (Reiziq) now at $350 - $365/t. This represents an overall $50/t uplift on the initial estimated range of $300 - $320/t announced in August 2017. As communicated, the positive adjustment was made possible by a combination of factors, including: continued positive trading conditions; leveraging the recovery in world markets and prices; and premiumisation of branded products. The Board will again review the C17 range at the next Board meeting in April. Grower Services has also announced the interim first payment rates for C18. Once again this season, following the April Board meeting we will be quoting a range for estimated C18 pool returns with pool payments being set from the lower end of that range. Any changes to the interim payments will automatically flow through in future pool payments.

Grower Reference Group

We have held the first meeting of the newly formed Grower Reference Group, which we have established with the support of the RGA to help inform SunRice's thinking on key grower issues.

The Group is intended to broaden the range of views and feedback that SunRice gets from our growers, particularly given the limited proportion of growers that attend our regular meetings throughout the year. We want the Group to provide frank and robust face-to-face feedback and, as a result, we have chosen a diverse mix of members. Items for discussion may include Capital Restructure options, grower-related programs and processes such as PayRice and other issues arising. I consider the first meeting was a success, with all members purposefully contributing to discussions across a range of issues.

PayRice harvest payments

With the first harvest payment for C18 on the horizon, by now you should have received by email the new look delivery and payment documents from the Grower Services team. We are trying to reduce the amount of paper we are sending to you, while ensuring we provide clear and concise information. I have received my documents via email and am pleased with the format and layout. We have also sent you a short video to step through the new documents and to help you understand how you will be paid. This will cover our new standard payment terms and the PayRice facility. Please take the time to review this information which can be accessed via the Grower Portal and if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Grower Services on 1800 654 557.

It was great to see those of you who attended the Rice Industry Field Day in Yanco recently, where it was exciting to be part of the launch of the new short season variety, YRM70, now named Viand. On behalf of the SunRice Board, I would like to wish you all the best of luck with harvest.

Laurie Arthur

To view photographs and charts, please visit:

Ricegrowers Ltd
Phone: +61-2-9268-2000
Fax: +61-2-8916-8360
WWW: www.sunrice.com.au

<![CDATA[ New Book Encourages Us to Stop Craving Happiness ]]> en92271 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/92271/ Mon, 5 Mar 2018 13:35:13 GMT Once in a while a book comes along that rocks our view of happiness. A new mental health, happiness book written by Iggy Tan titled "Stop Craving Happiness" was launched in Perth. This book explains how a simple, powerful mind training technique can lead us to 10/10 happiness.

The pursuit of happiness is a universal objective for every human being. We all want to be truly happy but the irony is that we constantly push happiness out of our reach. We delay our own happiness to the future by waiting for people, things and events to meet our expectations. Yet our expectations are rarely ever met, which is part of the reason why true happiness is so elusive. If we continue waiting, we will never reach the place of pure peace, contentment, joy and bliss.

Happiness is an internal state of mind and therefore has nothing to do with our external environment. The more you 'pursue' happiness, the less you will likely find it. The key to happiness has always been in us; in our mind. In order for us to be 10/10 happy we need to tame the turbulence in our mind caused by the relentless mental chatter and suffering. Ancient philosophy states that the existence of personal cravings and aversions in our minds creates mental turbulence. Consequently, by reducing the cravings and aversions we suffer less mentally and our overall happiness improves. While most of us would agree with the fundamentals of this concept, the challenge is how to achieve this in our modern, hectic and material world. The author of this book has developed Happiness Sweeping(R), a mind training technique that has helped many of its participants dramatically improve their personal happiness and overall sense of well-being.

The book's simple but effective guided routine will help lots of people to succeed according to Australian television legend Tony Barber. "Where was this book when I was sailing the storm tossed seas of showbiz, with all its stress, competitiveness and pressure...I reckon I would have won even more Logies and made even more gold albums." Australian super coach Dr Ric Charlesworth believes the most important thing that athletes must do to perform well in the cauldron of competition is to focus on the task and let the outcome look after itself. "Clearly Iggy understands this need to 'live in the moment' and not obsess about (or fear) the outcome. This allows us to 'be' and 'do' rather than worry and fret", he said.

The book demonstrates real life examples of people who continue to experience extremely challenging life situations and yet maintain outstanding happiness levels. "Stop Craving Happiness" should be on your "must read" list for the year.

To purchase a copy of the book now, please click:

Iggy Tan
Mobile: +61-419-046-397
Email: iggy.tan@bigpond.net.au

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) A Strong Half Year Result, Profit up 20% ]]> en92113 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/92113/ Thu, 22 Feb 2018 09:12:42 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) has announced first half revenue of $287 million, up 9%, delivering a net profit after tax to Blackmores shareholders of $34 million, up 20% compared to the previous corresponding period.


- Group net sales of $287 million, up 9% compared to previous corresponding period

- Sales result driven by strong performances from China, BioCeuticals and across Blackmores' other established Asia markets

- Net profit after tax of $34 million, up 20% compared to previous corresponding period

- First half dividend of 150 cents per share fully franked, up 15% compared to previous corresponding period

"We've had two quarters of consistent sales growth and improved our profitability reflecting the delivery of our strategic priorities and greater stability in the business," said Mr Richard Henfrey, Blackmores Chief Executive Officer.

"We're pleased with the first half financial performance and, importantly, with the progress of our growth strategy."

Blackmores Australia & New Zealand

"Revenue in Australia and New Zealand of $121 million was slightly down compared to last year as the broader consumer market remained subdued and China-influenced sales continue to move to our direct China channels. The impact on the Group result was lessened because of the strength of our business diversity, meaning we are less reliant on any single market or brand," said Richard Henfrey.

"The earnings from our business in Australia and New Zealand improved in the half with earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of $26 million, up 19% compared to the previous corresponding period. The improved EBIT results from changes to the cost structure of this business and the phasing of expenses."

The success of Blackmores' new product development in the probiotics and children's gummy vitamin categories supported gains in category share in the first half resulting in Blackmores maintaining clear total market leadership.

Blackmores Asia

China sales grew at 27% with online sales events including Singles Day (11/11) and 12/12 delivering record sales.

"E-commerce sales of Blackmores products for the 11 November Singles Day promotion surpassed those achieved last year after only two hours and 10 minutes," said Richard Henfrey.

"Our profit from China grew by 4% for the period after investment in resourcing and operating expenses were made as we expand our in-country presence," he said. "This result was also impacted by an increase to the doubtful debts provision in China of $2.8 million. All appropriate avenues to recover these debts are being progressed."

Blackmores' other businesses in Asia including Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong and Korea delivered strong double digit sales growth in the first half. The Korea business has stabilised in the period with strong growth through offline retail and the duty free channel.

"Our new business model in Korea is making a small but sustainable contribution after a challenging few years," said Richard Henfrey. "We launched in Vietnam with five products now registered. In Indonesia, we're encouraged by early consumer feedback and sales, healthcare professional support and distribution and accordingly we have invested further in this market, in line with our business plan."

Blackmores Thailand hosted a Blackmores Institute Symposium attended by more than 200 healthcare professionals.

BioCeuticals Group

BioCeuticals Group delivered sales growth of 11%. This was a solid result given that both BioCeuticals and Global Therapeutics have been particularly impacted by disruptions to supply.

BioCeuticals continues to lead in the practitioner category in both product sales and education resources. Their FX Medicine website attracts more than 100,000 unique visitors every month and each FX Medicine podcast is downloaded more than 70,000 times.


"We concluded the half with our new state-of-the-art distribution centre at Bungarribee in Western Sydney fully operational. This was a major change initiative that has required significant investment to underpin our growth ambitions," said Richard Henfrey.

"Continuity of supply has been a challenge in the second quarter as suppliers have struggled to respond to our increased requirements," said Richard Henfrey.

Inventory levels at $89 million represent a $16 million reduction compared to the same time last year.

"Inventory levels have been tightly managed and we're comfortable not only with the levels of stock held by Blackmores, but also by the amount of stock held by Australian retailers," said Richard Henfrey. "We are beginning to see the commencement of margin benefits from cost improvements resulting from the supply tender that we ran last year with more significant savings expected to flow through over the next 18 months."

Financial Position

Blackmores' balance sheet is in a strong position with a 63% improvement in cash generated from operations compared to the same time last year due to improved working capital management. Net debt was $66 million, a $21 million increase since June 2017 due to the purchase of shares related to Blackmores first three-year executive long-term incentive awards which had vested at the maximum potential, along with the funding of the dividend payments in the period. Gearing levels are 27% and Blackmores maintains a conservative level of headroom against all bank covenants.

Blackmores Institute

Blackmores Institute signed a landmark partnership with Tsinghua University in Beijing to develop a health communication curriculum course for natural medicine. "This partnership demonstrates the global reputation of our research and education program and the healthcare professionals who support it," said Richard Henfrey.

"Of our achievements this year, the commitment and performance of our team of employees is the greatest. Our staff have worked tirelessly through new leadership, operational changes and significant market shifts and employee engagement remains strong at 82% which is 14 percentage points above the industry benchmark. It showcases the unique culture that Marcus Blackmore has fostered and that we will protect and enhance as we grow and expand this business," said Richard Henfrey.


The Board has declared an interim dividend of 150 cents per share fully franked, which is an increase of 15% compared to the prior corresponding period. The record date is 8 March 2018 and the dividend is payable on 22 March 2018.


"The first half performance gives Blackmores a strong foundation for the full year. We have delivered an improved sales and profit result whilst investing in growth initiatives," said Richard Henfrey. "We're particularly encouraged by the progress of our businesses in China and Indonesia. Supply issues affecting the Group and the soft Australian retail market will impact us in the second half, though we remain confident we will continue to deliver good profit growth for the full year."

To view tables and figures, please visit:

To view Half Year Report, please visit:

To view Half Year Results Presentation, please visit:

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: +61-419-225-781 

Richard Henfrey
Chief Executive Officer
T: +61-2-9910-5376

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Takes Consumer Insight to Boost Shareholder Experience with the Launch of a Shareholder App ]]> en91311 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/91311/ Mon, 11 Dec 2017 12:36:29 GMT Blackmores (ASX:BKL) is proud to release an app for shareholders using new technology created by Computershare and their app partners, Amplifier Corporation.

"Our consumers are increasingly looking to engage with us through mobile technology and we used the same insight to launch a mobile solution for shareholders that is effectively a one stop shop for them to manage their investment in Blackmores," said Cecile Cooper, Blackmores Company Secretary.

The app is the first of its kind because of its deep integration with Computershare to enable shareholders and brokers mobile access to manage their shareholding, as well as:

- Live share price updates

- View dividend history

- Obtain dividend or tax statements

- Receive news, announcements, key dates and invitations to shareholder events

"Through intelligently-linked content, we are creating a superior user experience for shareholders in a whole new way," said Greg Dooley, Managing Director of Computershare Investor Services. "We wanted to make everyday life simpler for shareholders by offering them a completely new and user-friendly way of accessing their share information."

Adam Friedman, Amplifier CEO said, "Blackmores is leading the charge with innovation and their desire to communicate with shareholders in new ways on mobile is setting a benchmark for listed companies here and abroad. We're also proud to partner with Computershare to bring this integration to market and provide this service to all Computershare customers and their shareholders in 2018."

"Shareholders at our October AGM were part of the pilot of the first phase of the app," said Cecile Cooper. "We have the capacity to add more features in the future to enhance the experience we offer our investors."

The Blackmores Investors app is downloadable at http://blackmores.computershareapps.com
or by texting the word 'Blackmores' to 0400-813-813 (Aust and NZ). The app is compatible with all mobile devices, and gives all shareholders easy access to their holdings and all relevant Blackmores investor announcements and company information.

Access is via a secure login using a Securityholder Reference Number (SRN) or Holder Identification Number (HIN) and postcode.

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
E: sally.townsend@blackmores.com.au
M: +61-419-225-781

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Returns to Growth with First Quarter Profit of $15.4 Million ]]> en90533 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/90533/ Thu, 26 Oct 2017 08:39:11 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) today announced a first quarter profit of $15.4 million, up 28% compared to the prior corresponding period, after achieving net sales of $134 million, 9% up on the prior corresponding period.

- Net sales (see Note below) for the period of $134 million, up 9% compared to prior corresponding period

- Net profit after tax of $15.4 million, up 28% compared to prior corresponding period

- Demand continues to grow from Chinese consumers, direct China sales up 28%

- Investing in growth initiatives and on track for full year profit growth

"In the first quarter of the year we achieved 28% growth in our direct China sales, launched a new range of kids' products that - true to our values - are more than 99% sugar-free, we maintained tight cost control while continuing to invest in key growth platforms, and launched a new world-class education platform," said Blackmores Chief Executive Officer Mr Richard Henfrey.

"This is a promising start to the new financial year. We're pleased with our progress compared to the challenging first quarter performance last year, and we have returned to delivering profit growth."

"Blackmores has experienced less volatility across the business in the quarter and we have implemented a global approach to pricing which has supported an improvement in underlying margins," said Mr Henfrey. "Promotional rebates were high in the last financial year as we supported customers carrying high levels of stock. In this quarter we have returned to a more normalised trading environment."

"Australian retail remains challenging and this was compounded by strong sales at the end of the fourth quarter, which impacted our July result in Australia," said Mr Henfrey. "Consumer sentiment in Australia has been subdued though sales in Australia continue to be boosted by strong consumer demand from Chinese consumers."

New product innovation has been well received with broad and growing distribution of Blackmores' new probiotic range which uses multiple strains of good bacteria, is condition specific and does not require refrigeration. The launch of sugar-free gummy vitamins for kids resonated well with consumers resulting in a stronger sell-in than expected.

Sales to China are growing as the market approaches the famous Double 11 sales event in November with direct China sales, including export and in-country sales, up 28% compared to the prior corresponding period. Excluding China, sales to other markets across Asia were up 12% compared to the prior corresponding period. Blackmores Malaysia launched Project Kindness, a community-focused marketing campaign, which contributed to 16% sales growth compared to prior period (26% in local currency). Sales in Hong Kong were up 25% (32% in local currency) compared to prior period.

"We welcomed the announcement made by the Chinese government affirming their commitment to the pilot of cross border e-commerce, extending the existing regulations by another year and opening additional free-trade zones which gives us greater certainty as we grow our business in this important market,' said Richard Henfrey.

"Blackmores has continued to invest in our emerging business in Indonesia which is progressing well and meeting our expectations," said Richard Henfrey. "The recent launch of our Pregnancy and Breast-Feeding Gold product was very positive with more than 600 obstetricians participating in a micronutrient education seminar and strong consumer sales at a recent Mother and Baby Show."

BioCeuticals and Global Therapeutics grew sales by 14% compared to the prior corresponding period.

Blackmores and our infant nutrition range partner Bega Cheese have considered the performance of the business and have mutually agreed to wind-up the partnership. Blackmores remains committed to the category.

"Our cost-conscious approach to managing operating expenditure in our established businesses has enabled our continued investment in growth initiatives including our new business in Indonesia, increased brand support in China and the fit-out of our new distribution centre at Bungarribee in Western Sydney," said Richard Henfrey.

Blackmores published our 2017 Sustainability Report detailing the vision and performance of the Group's approach to sustainability which extends beyond protecting the environment and incorporates corporate governance, workplace practices, our quality framework and responsibility to the community. Download the full report at blackmoressustainability.com.au.


"We are in a better position than this time last year with a sound balance sheet, sales and profits returning to year-on-year growth and customers not carrying the high levels of stock that impacted our performance 12 months ago. Consumer demand in China remains strong, though the buying patterns of Chinese entrepreneurs, tourists and exporters in Australia continues to evolve. We are mindful of the challenges in Australian retail caused by softer consumer sentiment," said Richard Henfrey.

"Our continued investment in new business initiatives reflects the number of opportunities across our Group and our confidence in the growth prospects of our company. In line with our expectations, we are on track to deliver growth on last year's reported profit."

Note: Consistent with best practice industry reporting standards, Blackmores now reports net sales as our primary revenue measure. Profit after tax reflects profit attributable to Blackmores shareholders (excluding joint venture interests).

To view tables, please visit:

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: +61-419-225-781

Richard Henfrey
Chief Executive Officer
T: +61-2-9910-5186

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) 2017 AGM Webcast ]]> en90465 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/90465/ Mon, 23 Oct 2017 08:20:27 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) wishes to advise that a webcast facility will be available to view the 2017 Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 26 October 2017.

A live webcast of the meeting will be available at:


An archive of the webcast will be available after the event on the Blackmores website at www.blackmores.com.au (Go to Investor Centre, then click on 'Investor Webcasts').

The webcast will not be interactive and shareholders who wish to vote at the meeting should attend in person or by proxy.

Proxy forms and full details of the 2017 AGM are contained in the Notice of Meeting which was sent to shareholders and lodged with ASX 22 September 2017.

If you have any questions about the AGM, call +61 2 9910 5000 or email reception@blackmores.com.au for further assistance.

Blackmores Limited
Sally Townsend, Head of Brand Communications
T: +61-2-9910-5122
E: stownsend@blackmores.com.au
WWW: www.blackmores.com.au

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Analysts Briefing ]]> en89751 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/89751/ Tue, 29 Aug 2017 10:06:16 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) Analysts Briefing - A REBALANCING YEAR FOR BLACKMORES

- A challenging first quarter and turbulent year, and the Group emerged stronger

o Group Sales of $693m, down 3% on prior year

o Group NPAT of $58m, down 42% on prior year

- Australian retail market has been competitive, putting pressure on profit

- Consumer demand remains strong though retail environment is volatile

- Realigned cost structure to manage expenses and reinvesting savings into growth initiatives

- Appropriate provisions in place for inventory secured during 2016 supply constraints and for infant formula

- Final dividend

To the briefing, please visit:

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: +61-419-225-781

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Full Year Results ]]> en89743 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/89743/ Tue, 29 Aug 2017 08:45:50 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) has announced annual sales of $693 million, down 3% compared to the prior year and a net profit after tax (NPAT) of $58 million, down 42% on the prior year.

- Full year sales of $693 million, down 3% on prior year

- Net profit after tax for the full year of $58 million, down 42% on prior year

- Closed the year with a strong balance sheet

- Final dividend of 140 cents per share, bringing total ordinary dividends for the year to 270 cents per share (fully franked), 34% down on prior year

Following two exceptional years of growth, this was a rebalancing year for the Blackmores Group.

"After a turbulent start to the year, we are pleased with our recent performance," said Ms Christine Holgate, Blackmores' outgoing1 Chief Executive Officer. "We finished the year in a stronger position than we entered it. We have changed our expense structure to reflect a different trading environment and maintained investment in core future growth platforms; we have made appropriate provisions to protect us in future years and, with tight management of our inventory and cash, we exited the year with a strong balance sheet."


Speculation in April 2016 about potential regulatory changes in China impacted the buying patterns of Chinese entrepreneurs and tourists who were previously purchasing through Australian retailers.

The decline in sales to Chinese consumers through Australian retail was significant and came without warning. This was evident in the high levels of stock in the market in the first quarter of the 2017 financial year as seen in Blackmores' first quarter results.

To protect against future potential uncertainty, inventory provisions have been increased from $2 million to $14 million, this includes approximately $10 million in provisions above normal levels, impacting earnings by the same amount.

"The demand for Blackmores products in China remained strong throughout the year although the route to serve it has changed significantly. Blackmores responded quickly to the changes in the market by both building a new China export team and strengthening our in-country China business and tightly managing our inventory," said Christine Holgate. "We closed the year with direct China sales up 71% at $132 million. Including estimated sales through Australian retailers, China accounts for approximately $250 million of Group sales."

Although sales recovered as the year progressed, the changed Australian retail environment saw a return to market competition and normalised levels of trading terms, which diminished profits further on a year to year comparison.

Management responded to the pressure on profits across the Blackmores Australia business by realigning costs, managing expenses and reinvesting savings into growth initiatives. This included support for Blackmores' new businesses in Indonesia and Vietnam; further investment in BioCeuticals and Global Therapeutics; developing a world-first online education platform and the fit out of a stateof-the-art distribution centre in Western Sydney that will support future sales volumes for the Group.


Blackmores Australia and New Zealand sales of $372 million, including Pure Animal Wellbeing (2016: $482 million) were down 23% primarily due to Chinese tourists and exporters changing their buying patterns and following a return to market competitive pressures. Excluding the impact of Chinese influenced sales, Blackmores branded domestic sales were flat with clear market leadership maintained.


Asia direct sales were $216 million, up 36%, highlighting the strategic importance of Asia as a growth platform for the Group. The importance of the China market is evident with Blackmores China direct sales, up 71% on prior year to $132 million, including sales through Blackmores new export division.

In September 2016, Blackmores launched a range of products in Indonesia and progressed the establishment of a business in Vietnam, where a range of Blackmores products will launch in coming months.


BioCeuticals and Global Therapeutics delivered sales of $102 million. BioCeuticals achieved sales of almost $80 million which was a 15% increase compared to the prior year. BioCeuticals exceeded the ten year sales and earnings goal, set when the business was acquired in 2012, within five years. On a like-for-like comparison, sales of Global Therapeutics products were up 11% and the business is now successfully integrated into the Blackmores Group.


Business fundamentals are strong and the balance sheet demonstrates the focus on inventory, debt management and working capital, all contributing to strong cash generation. The financial health of the business gives Blackmores a solid entry into the new financial year.

"Our underlying performance has improved as the year progressed. We have invested in a worldclass distribution centre in Western Sydney and in new technology platforms that will support the growth we anticipate, including additional volumes from our emerging businesses in Asia," said Mr Richard Henfrey, who was appointed as Blackmores CEO on 17 August 2017. Mr Henfrey was previously Blackmores Chief Operating Officer.

"In line with updates to shareholders over the year, reported profits for the full year did not meet those of last year's exceptional results though represent 25% growth on the very strong 2015 financial year," he said.


The Board has declared a final dividend of 140 cents per share (fully franked), taking total dividends for the year to 270 cents, down 34% compared to last year. This reflects the Group's sound financial position and the Board's confidence in the future. The record date is 12 September 2017 and the dividend is payable on 26 September 2017.


Market conditions will continue to change and evolve in Australia and in Asia. Regulation, pricing and channel strategy changes provide challenges. Notwithstanding these challenges, Asia, and China in particular, is a significant opportunity, consumer demand remains strong and we expect recent initiatives such as our improved distribution capability and online education platform, to strengthen our core.

Blackmores' management and the Board expect year-on-year profit growth this financial year.

To view the Annual Report, please visit:

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: 0419 225 781

Dee Henz
Investor Relations Manager
T: +61 2 9910 5162

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Announcement of Appointment of CEO ]]> en89582 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/89582/ Thu, 17 Aug 2017 09:54:03 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) Chairman Stephen Chapman, today announced the appointment of Richard Henfrey as Chief Executive Officer following the recent resignation of Christine Holgate.

Richard has served as Chief Operating Officer of Blackmores for the past three years and has held a number of senior leadership roles within the company since joining in 2009. His appointment is effective immediately.

The appointment follows an extensive process which evaluated both internal and external candidates.

In addition to his Chief Operating Officer role at Blackmores, Richard has also held Executive Team roles across Strategic Sourcing and People and Strategy. Richard was the Board President of Complementary Medicines Australia, the industry association, until December 2015.

"Richard has been at the forefront of Blackmores' strategy development for more than eight years and has driven key business projects that positioned us well for the transformation of our business over that time," said Stephen Chapman, Blackmores Chairman.

"He has demonstrated his integrity, leadership capability and strong strategic and financial acumen throughout this time and has earned the respect of his team, our business partners and the Board. He met all of our criteria to become the next leader of the Blackmores business."

"Richard successfully led Blackmores' operational teams through a period of extraordinary growth as our Asia business expanded," said Mr Chapman. "He has engaged closely with industry regulators both in Australia and across Asia, has deepened our influence over our supply chain and continued to raise the standards underpinning our quality program."

"His academic qualifications in Natural Sciences combined with more than two decades of experience in directing strategy, people and leading financial transformation makes him one of the rare people who understands natural health and the drivers of our business," said Stephen Chapman.

"The roles he has held have given him a unique insight into the complexities of our business and the opportunities before us. Given his commitment to our values, our culture and our people, his appointment will ensure a seamless transition for our team and the continuation of our growth strategy."

Richard Henfrey said: "I am delighted to have been appointed as the next leader of this outstanding business. I come to the role with great enthusiasm and confidence in the long term prospects for our business and the industry as a whole."

"Having joined Blackmores in a role tasked with the development of a growth strategy in 2009 we have seen an exciting Australian business expand into a Group with a diverse portfolio of brands and people across the Asia Pacific region. My focus in taking on this role is to continue to expand our operations, invest in product development, extend our research and education capabilities and to showcase Australian health innovation on a world stage."

"I'm privileged to be working with a wonderful team and together we'll begin this next chapter in the Blackmores story," said Richard Henfrey. "I'd like to thank Christine Holgate who has been an inspiring CEO for Blackmores over the last nine years."

Blackmores will announce its full year financial results on 29 August 2017.

Richard Henfrey

Chief Executive Officer, Blackmores Ltd.

Richard Henfrey begins as Chief Executive Officer on 17 August 2017 after more than eight successful years on Blackmores' Leadership Team including three years as Chief Operating Officer. He was Board President of Complementary Medicines Australia from June 2011 until December 2015 leading the industry association's input into the most comprehensive review into regulation of complementary medicine since the system was established in 1989.

Prior to Blackmores he worked for Telstra Corporation in roles including Director of Technical Sales, Telstra Business, General Manager, Business Sales NSW and General Manager of Marketing Strategy, Telstra Business and Government.

Prior to emigrating to Australia in 2003 with his Australian wife and children, Richard was Director of Strategy and market Intelligence for Energis plc and played a key role in the financial restructuring of the business.

Richard graduated from Cambridge University with honours in Natural Sciences, specialising in genetics and molecular and cell biology.

He passionately supports the molecular cardiology work of the Centenary Institute, Quest for Life Foundation and Bear Cottage.

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: +61-419-225-781

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Announces Company Leadership Changes ]]> en88882 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/88882/ Tue, 27 June 2017 09:01:58 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) Chairman Stephen Chapman today announced that Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Christine Holgate will be leaving Blackmores after nine years at the helm of Australia's leading natural healthcare company. Christine Holgate has accepted the position as Chief Executive Officer of Australia Post and will leave the company on 29 September.

"It is with regret that we announce Christine's departure from Blackmores as CEO and Managing Director," said Mr Stephen Chapman. "On behalf of our Board, our staff and our shareholders, I would like to thank Christine for her outstanding leadership and excellent contribution to Blackmores' success."

"The Board has asked Director Marcus Blackmore to return from sabbatical to step in as Interim CEO prior to the Board appointing a new Chief Executive Officer. We have a clear strategy in place and a strong executive team, including potential CEO candidates, to take the company forward," said Mr Chapman.

The Board is pleased to also announce that Stephen Chapman, who took on the role as acting Chairman whilst Marcus was on leave, will continue on as Chairman after the new CEO has been appointed. Marcus Blackmore will continue as a Director of the company with an added responsibility as Brand President.

"Blackmores has enjoyed great success under Christine's leadership," said Marcus Blackmore. "We've continued our expansion into Asia and diversified our earnings through growth of our core segments and key acquisitions. Importantly, she has been a champion for the values that have steered this company for the last 85 years."

"Christine's legacy is a program of transformation which has enabled our Group to adapt to some significant market changes in recent years. She is a very dear friend to Blackmores and to me personally," said Marcus Blackmore. "I would like to congratulate her on her new appointment and wish her every success in the future."

"I'd like to personally thank Christine for the outstanding leadership she has provided," said Marcus Blackmore. "She has strengthened our strategy and management team so we are exceptionally well positioned for the future."

"I am so appreciative of the opportunity Marcus gave me to lead Blackmores nine years ago and I am proud of what we have achieved together," said Christine Holgate. "If I reflect on what I believe makes Blackmores people special, it is a shared purpose to help others improve and empower their lives through natural health. I have no doubt that it has been working with Marcus and the team at Blackmores that made me recognise my responsibility to contribute to society."

Sally Townsend
M: +61-419-225-781

Christine Holgate
M: +61-409-102-122

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Key Appointments in China ]]> en88770 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/88770/ Fri, 16 June 2017 15:07:48 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF), Australia's leading natural health company, has been appointed in a key leadership advisory role to the China Association for Quality Inspection (CAQI), a high level non-profit Chinese organisation with responsibility for product quality inspection.

The recognition as Vice President Company of CAQI was furthered with the appointment of Peter Osborne, Blackmores Managing Director, Asia, as Vice Chairman of CAQI's Advisory Committee - the first and only foreign citizen to hold a CAQI board position.

Both Blackmores and Peter Osborne have been appointed for a five-year term.

"I am incredibly proud that Blackmores and Peter Osborne have been honoured with these appointments. I believe they reflect the respect that China has for Australia's stringent regulatory systems and their confidence in the quality of goods manufactured in Australia," said Blackmores CEO Christine Holgate.

"China is a hugely important part of Blackmores' global business, as it is for many Australian companies. In my view, this appointment reflects the importance of Australia as a trading partner with China and will assist in developing stronger cooperation between our two great nations," she said.

Mr Zhang Ming, CAQI's Vice Chairman, speaking from their headquarters in Beijing said, "The China Association for Quality Inspection is very pleased to have recently appointed Australia's leading healthcare brand Blackmores as Vice-President Company and its Managing Director Asia Mr Peter Osborne as Honorary Vice Chairman of CAQI's advisory committee. Blackmores' commitment to quality, research and ensuring efficacy and consumer understanding of healthcare products will greatly support CAQI's focus in this growing category in China. CAQI believes we can all work together to pursue premium product quality without national boundaries."

"I believe Peter Osborne is uniquely positioned to serve on the CAQI board. It builds on his 23 years of diplomatic experience working for Austrade in the region, and the eight years spent overseeing Blackmores growth and transformation in Asia. I know that Peter will make a valuable contribution in his role as Vice Chairman of CAQI," said Christine Holgate.

"Growth in China is a core strategic focus for Blackmores and we are continuing to invest in the region. I'm delighted to announce the appointment of a new senior member of our Asian leadership team, Jeff Zhang, General Manager, China," said Christine Holgate.

Jeff Zhang has extensive management experience, leading a number of major global brands in China. Most recently Jeff was with Murray Goulburn in China spearheading new strategies for offline and cross border e-commerce channel development in China for Australian dairy products. His experience extends to understanding the regulatory complexities and opportunities in the market for Australian companies. Jeff holds a degree in Accounting and an MBA from the University of Durham in the UK. He starts his role with Blackmores on Monday.

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: +61-419-225-781

<![CDATA[ Paws Firmly Planted for Growth in Multibillion-Dollar Pet Health Market ]]> en88174 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/88174/ Thu, 4 May 2017 21:00:05 GMT NetworkNewsWire Editorial Coverage: Pets are the loyal, much-loved companions we humans can't seem to live without, and when a beloved pet becomes ill, owners will generally do whatever it takes to restore these beloved companion animals to health. Various public companies are accomplishing the two-fold mission of improving the health of our four-footed friends while giving investors the opportunity to capitalize on a multibillion-dollar industry. India Globalization Capital, Inc. (NYSE:IGC) (IGC Profile), VCA, Inc. (NASDAQ:WOOF), PetMed Express, Inc. (NASDAQ:PETS), Blue Buffalo Pet Products, Inc. (NASDAQ:BUFF) and IDEXX Laboratories, Inc. (NASDAQ:IDXX) are just some of the companies blazing lucrative trails in the pet health market and successfully tapping into its virtually limitless opportunities.

In 2016 alone, U.S. consumers spent over $65 billion on pet-related products (1). According to a 2013 study published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. households own approximately 218 million pets, and pet-related expenses for the average U.S. household amounts to about 1 percent of their total annual spending. Further, the North American Pet Health Insurance Association reports that pet health insurance premiums hit $774 million in the U.S. in 2015, with 1.6 million pets being insured by the end of that year. Clearly, consumers are interested in the health and wellbeing of their pets, and they're showing it with dollars.

The veterinary market is a veritable cash cow - if readers will pardon the pun - that offers virtually limitless investment potential.

One pioneering company, India Globalization Capital (IGC) is forging new paths in the medical marijuana market by exploring the potential health applications of cannabis in domesticated animals. IGC is engaged in the development of phytocannabinoid-based treatments to address pain and a variety of medical conditions, including marijuana-based therapies to treat seizures in dogs and cats.

Treatment for pet seizures represents a surprisingly large market. Statistics indicate that between 1 percent and more than 5 percent of dogs have some sort of seizure disorder, and certain canine breeds with hereditary epilepsy may have as high as 15 to 20 percent incidence of seizures. Abnormal brain activity is frequently the culprit behind canine and feline seizures, and these seizures can result in both subtle and violent convulsions, either of which is most alarming for a pet owner to witness.

IGC offers a novel therapy using cannabinoid extracts to treat such seizures in pets. The company has applied for a U.S. patent based on this therapy, which can be administered via various delivery technologies and has indications for mammals, including dogs and cats. This therapy has the potential to be useful in humans, as well. IGC anticipates conducting metabolic profiling and commencing trials.

Another company aimed at capitalizing on the opportunities of the pet health market is VCA (WOOF). This veterinary services company has become one of the largest families of animal care providers in the United States, operating more than 800 veterinary hospitals across the U.S. and in five Canadian provinces. The company also provides diagnostic services and supplies high-tech imaging to over 17,000 independent veterinary hospitals. Through its Camp Bow Wow subsidiary, VCA additionally provides doggy daycare and boarding services at more than 130 franchised locations throughout the United States.

Online pet pharmaceutical company PetMed Express (PETS), also known under the name 1-800-PetMeds, is the largest pet pharmacy in America, having served over 9 million customers and counting. PetMeds is a licensed pharmacy that dispenses FDA/EPA-approved medications for animals-the same products available from veterinarians-and employs the largest number of veterinary pharmacists in the world.

Blue Buffalo Pet Products (BUFF) approaches pet health in another way, offering natural, healthy pet foods to help prevent-and in some case treat-pet illness and to foster the health of America's pets in a nutrition-based way. The company currently has approximately 6 percent share of the general pet food industry, feeding 164 million pets in the U.S. and counting. The company's products include veterinarian- and nutritionist-formulated therapeutic pet foods that can only be purchased through veterinary offices.

Pet health care innovator IDEXX Laboratories (IDXX) serves veterinarians across the globe with a wide array of diagnostic and information technology-based services and products. These products better equip and enable veterinarians to offer advanced medical care, bolster staff efficiency, and build practices that are more economically successful. The company is also a leading global provider of diagnostic tests and information for livestock and poultry, as well as tests that gauge the quality and safety of water and milk. Among its products, IDEXX offers the very first low-dose radiography system in veterinary medicine, as well as a test that enables veterinarians to detect acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease in pets earlier than ever before. IDEXX Laboratories products are sold in over 175 countries.

It's no secret that consumers love their pets, and a multibillion-dollar global industry is positive proof. Companies, such as those named, that are in the business of serving the health interests of pets provide a virtually limitless wellspring of investment opportunities in a market that is ever-growing and boasts impressive longevity to rival any other market segment in existence.

For more information on India Globalization Capital please visit India Global Capital (IGC)

Editorial Sources:

(1) American Pet Products Association: http://nnw.fm/V66et

NetworkNewsWire (NNW) 
New York, New York 
T: +1-212-418-1217 Office 
E: Editor@NetworkNewsWire.net

<![CDATA[ Bubs Australia Ltd (ASX:BUB) Launch On 'Red,' China's Top Consumer Review and Commerce App ]]> en88127 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/88127/ Tue, 2 May 2017 08:57:34 GMT Bubs Australia (ASX:BUB) is the first Australian company to directly enter into a Merchant Agreement with RED (Xiaohongshu). RED is the largest and fastest growing social commerce application in China with over 40,000,000 registered users.

- Bubs Australia joins the world's largest product review database

- Provides direct access to 40 million highly targeted Chinese consumers

- Leading platform for creating demand through reviews and connectivity

Commenting on the launch, Bubs Australia Founder and Managing Director, Kristy Carr said: "RED boasts a strong community of targeted affluent mothers of today and tomorrow, providing us with invaluable insight into Chinese consumer behavior. Having our products ranged on this unique e-commerce platform will deliver brand awareness together with sales revenue growth.

"Customer reviews and social community strongly influence consumer buying decisions in China, particularly in the baby category. RED enables unrivalled word-of-mouth marketing opportunities that align closely with our 'pull-versus-push' strategy aimed at creating real sustainable demand via earned reviews and engaging mum-to-mum connection."

The RED application is the largest word-of-mouth marketing platform in China with users posting 30,000 new product reviews and comments daily. Members can discover and buy international products based on community recommendations and other consumers sharing their personal experiences. RED users focus on premium products across multiple categories (including international luxury brands and other sought-after foreign products such as cosmetics, specialty foods and mother/baby products).(See note 1)

"Given our premium positioning and unique attributes of Australian provenance, certified organic superfoods and premium goat milk formulation, the RED social platform will positively impact our brand traction and social currency," Mrs Carr said.

The Bubs full portfolio of infant formula and baby food products will be listed on RED Marketplace with orders to be fulfilled directly to consumers' homes in China. The platform also provides the opportunity to trial new products and gain insight into their appeal with Chinese consumers.

Note 1: The RED app, originally a social shopping guide, now features both C2C e-commerce and the opportunity for brands to open official cross-border e-commerce shops. (WeChat's owner TenCent is an investor in RED.)

Media enquiries and Investor Inquiries:
Deanne Curry
T: +61-414-388-997

For general information please contact:
E: investors@bubsaustralia.com

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Ltd (ASX:BKL) Optimistic About Future Growth ]]> en88022 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/88022/ Thu, 27 Apr 2017 10:03:46 GMT Blackmores Ltd (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) today announced Group sales of $496 million for the first nine months, down 6.7% compared to the previous corresponding period. Net profit after tax of $43 million was down 42.8% compared to the previous corresponding period.


- Group sales of $496M for the first nine months, 6.7% down compared to previous corresponding period and a moderate increase on second quarter despite fewer trading days

- Net profit after tax of $43M for the first nine months, down 42.8% compared to the previous corresponding period

- Invested in brand, a world-class distribution centre in Western Sydney and expansion into new markets

- The Board remains confident in future growth prospects

"The sales trend is encouraging, particularly as we finished the third quarter slightly ahead of our second quarter result despite having fewer trading days," said Blackmores Chief Executive Officer Ms Christine Holgate.

"Our profit result for the first nine months was impacted by lower sales in Australia for Blackmores which was compounded by the higher cost of operating in those channels," said Ms Holgate. "We are focused on simplifying and streamlining our business, conservatively managing expenses and investing in our brand, facilities and new markets to diversify our revenues and underpin growth."

Blackmores Australia and New Zealand achieved sales of $264 million for the nine months, down 26% compared to the previous corresponding period. "Blackmores Australia sales have steadily grown over each quarter of the year. This has still not been enough to make up for the decline in sales through Australian retailers to entrepreneurs selling to consumers in China that so heavily influenced the Australian market in the prior year."

"Chinese consumers are now purchasing through multiple channels and our China in-country and export sales increased to $92 million in the nine months, up 60% from the prior year. China remains an important part of our business and we were extremely honoured to meet with China's Premier Li Keqiang in March to share our support of his Healthy China 2030 vision," said Ms Holgate.

"In March Blackmores welcomed encouraging news from China's Ministry of Commerce which reinforced its commitment to China's free trade zones and to supporting cross border e-commerce," said Blackmores Chief Executive Officer, Christine Holgate. "We recognise that regulation in China evolves, as it does in any market, and we are focused on continuing to build a business that is able to adapt to market changes to ensure consumers continue to have access to our products."

Blackmores Greater Asia region, excluding China, generated sales of $62 million, in line with last year. Excluding Korea, which is in the process of completing a transition to a new distribution model, core markets in Asia were up 14%. Blackmores' emerging business in Indonesia has progressed well.

Blackmores signed a distribution agreement with the Mesa Group, Vietnam's leading distribution company with a network of 150,000 retail stores. Blackmores and Mesa will launch a range of 13 Blackmores products in the coming months.

"Vietnam is a market we are excited about, with enviable economic growth, a growing investment in the region and double digit growth in the vitamin and dietary supplement category and we are proud to have a distribution partner with such expertise," she said. "Our launch in Vietnam consolidates our presence in the ASEAN region and we hope that through our high quality products and leading education programs we can make a positive contribution to health in the Vietnamese community."

BioCeuticals Group, including Global Therapeutics, increased sales by 53% compared to the previous corresponding period to $76 million for the first nine months. All brands in this practitioner division are delivering strong profitable sales. The Global Therapeutics distribution centre was successfully integrated into Group operations in the quarter which will result in improved efficiencies and customer benefits.

To support sustainable industry growth, Blackmores and the Blackmore Foundation, Marcus and Caroline Blackmore's personal philanthropic trust, each gifted $5 million to the National Institute of Complementary Medicine (NICM) at Western Sydney University (WSU) to further natural health research. The $10 million will be paid over seven years and will advance the global evidence-base of complementary medicine and take scientific findings into practical healthcare solutions. It represents a significant opportunity to enrich the health of the community.


"Continued consumer demand across all core markets, as well as the strong performance of our practitioner businesses and emerging markets in Asia, gives us confidence in our medium-term growth opportunities," said Ms Holgate.

"The Board expects the full year profit will represent good growth on the 2015 financial year, recognising that 2016 was an exceptional performance that we will not match. We remain confident in the Group's strategic focus and growth prospects."

To view the release including Results, please visit:

MEET THE MANAGEMENT: Special Shareholder event

INVITATION: Wednesday 31st May, 2017

This exclusive shareholder-only event will give you the unique opportunity to better understand how we work and gain deeper insight into our business.

TIME: 10am to 12pm, followed by a light lunch.

VENUE: Blackmores Warriewood Campus,
20 Jubilee Avenue, Warriewood NSW 2102.

RSVP by Friday 19th May 2017.

To RSVP please contact Robyn Taylor at:
E: rtaylor@blackmores.com.au
T: +61-2-9910-5136

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: +61-419-225-781

Christine Holgate
Chief Executive Officer
T: +61-2-9910-5186

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Together with Marcus Blackmore Gift $10 Million to National Institute of Complementary Medicine for Research ]]> en87741 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/87741/ Mon, 3 Apr 2017 14:16:23 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) and the Blackmore Foundation, Marcus and Caroline Blackmore's personal philanthropic trust, have each gifted $5 million to the National Institute of Complementary Medicine (NICM) at Western Sydney University (WSU) to further natural health research.

The $10 million will be paid over seven years.

NICM is a global leader in complementary medicine research and policy and has been ranked by the Australian Research Council as operating at higher standards than world's best-practice.

This $10 million donation, officiated on Friday at NICM, is Blackmores' most significant investment into research and development in the history of our company.

As Marcus said:

"As industry leaders, Blackmores believes it is our responsibility to invest in complementary medicine research and to support innovation in this field. NICM is a world-class research facility, and we are very proud to provide this untied donation to help advance science and innovation in complementary medicine. Blackmores' gift to the University will not only support the Australian research community in furthering the country's global leadership in this area, most importantly, it will contribute to the knowledge base, which in turn, will help improve public health."

Ultimately, this research will advance the global evidence-base of complementary medicine and take scientific findings into practical healthcare solutions that will improve public health.

Over the past 12 months, Blackmores has engaged in 24 active research projects, clinical trials and scholarly activities across Australia and Asia. In 2015 we made a significant, unencumbered donation of $1.3m to Sydney University's Medical School to fund The Maurice Blackmore Chair of Integrative Medicine over five years.

Blackmores is enormously proud of the legacy that this gift to NICM will make towards the advancement of complementary medicine research, innovation, and research translation, and the contribution this will make to the wellbeing of the community.

Shareholder Contact:
Cecile Cooper
Company Secretary
T: +61-2-9910-5136

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) Receives Prestigious Quality Recognition from Chinese Government ]]> en87575 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/87575/ Wed, 22 Mar 2017 12:06:29 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) has been awarded the prestigious Product and Service Quality Demonstration Company Certificate from the China Association for Quality Inspection (CAQI), an association under the supervision of the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the People's Republic of China (AQSIQ).

The certificate was awarded as part of the 2017 annual '315' Consumer Day in China. The Certificate recognises companies that have demonstrated exceptional product quality and service to consumers in China.

The Certificate is awarded only to companies who have no quality issues over a three year period with exceptional quality control and high social responsibility.

In 2017, a total of 2,000 certificates were issued to companies in China, with only about 200 being issued to foreign invested enterprises. In the health products category Blackmores was one of the 20 foreign companies to be awarded the Certificate. Blackmores is Australia's number one natural health brand with an 85 year heritage, reaching consumers in 16 markets.

Speaking in Beijing after receiving the award, Blackmores Managing Director Asia, Mr Peter Osborne said, "Receiving the Product and Service Quality Demonstration Company Certificate from the China Association for Quality Inspection is a huge honour for Blackmores and we deeply appreciate the support of CAQI and AQSIQ for recognising our product quality and service."

Mr Osborne also noted that, "Blackmores' commitment to quality ensures we consistently meet or exceed the expectations of our customers and comply with Australia and China's high regulatory standards and requirements. We source premium ingredients from approved raw material suppliers around the world, testing them in accredited laboratories for identity, purity and potency. Every Blackmores' product passes through more than 30 rigorous quality checks and tests before being released for sale."

"We're so proud to receive this recognition and would especially like to thank all of our suppliers who work so closely with us to ensure we provide the world's leading natural health solutions," said Blackmores Chief Executive Officer, Christine Holgate.

As a foreign company in China, Blackmores maintains strict compliance to the Quality Development Plan issued by the State Council, consistent with the views of President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang.

Speaking in Sydney today, Christine Holgate said, "We are extremely pleased that the Chinese Premier Li Keqiang is arriving in Australia this week and I look forward to participating in the program of his visit and to having the opportunity to discuss how we can make a positive contribution to his Healthy China 2030 vision."

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: +61-419-225-781

<![CDATA[ YPB Group Ltd (ASX:YPB) Updated Outlook for 2017 ]]> en86868 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/86868/ Thu, 2 Feb 2017 10:41:06 GMT Brand Protection and Customer Engagement solutions company YPB Group Ltd (ASX:YPB) is pleased to provide an updated outlook for 2017.

- 2017 profit outlook confirmed at $5m pre-tax

- Annualised operating cost base reduction of 40% by mid-2017 following strategy refinements

- Possible non-recurring restructuring charge in the range $0.50m - 0.75m

- Breakeven expectation delayed three months due to contract closure slippages - now expected end June 2017

YPB has concluded its Annual Operating Plan (AOP) process, reconfirming the expectation of a $5m pretax profit for the year to December 2017. This figure is, however, prior to a potential once-off restructuring charge (discussed in more detail below).

The profit expectation is maintained despite a three month delay in the expected timing of breakeven from the end of March 2017 to the end of June 2017. This slippage is due to contract closures taking longer than expected and therefore first revenues from these deals flowing later than expected.

The key outcome of the AOP was a refinement of strategy that will see a narrower focus of management effort, allowing a reduction in annual operating costs from $11.1m to $6.5m per annum.

Approximately 95% of the planned savings in monthly spend will be delivered by May 2017 with full benefits achieved by August 2017. The changes are unlikely to diminish YPB's revenue potential, with the most likely reconfiguration expected to substantially enhance revenues.

The obvious financial benefit from the refined strategy is securing a breakeven position at a lower revenue base and with less risk, while magnifying profit leverage to revenue growth.

The AOP was due to conclude in December but was delayed due to strategic opportunities in key territories arising in late November. These opportunities will improve market access, lower costs and enhance profit potential.

The most important opportunity is the change from a direct sales force to a partnership model in key territories where YPB's costs have been traditionally high. This prospect arose in late November and has progressed well in the New Year, with targeted partners believing their home markets are ripe for YPB product.

The trade-off for YPB in partnering is lower percentage margin but this penalty is irrelevant in light of the benefits of high quality partners. In one key territory under negotiation, any margin foregone is dwarfed by the potential revenue and profit uplift from vastly superior client access, market reach, organisational credibility and speed to market. This partner is a household name in its home market with a decades-old country-wide distribution network. Higher revenues with minimal costs and capital requirements is a compelling outcome of partnering.

Please note that it is possible that the most valuable partnership currently in train may not be concluded. Nevertheless, the process is well advanced and contractual closure is presently expected to be concluded in Q1 2017. Upon closure, more detail will be provided to the market regarding this new partnership.

The $4.5m per annum in annualised overhead savings noted above is not dependent on the conclusion of any partnerships and will be implemented regardless. The incidence of restructuring charge is, however, possibly dependent on conclusion of the key partnership referred to above and the model adopted. One possible scenario would see YPB incur minimal restructuring costs. In the event of YPB bearing all costs, a once-off charge of $0.50m - $0.75m is likely in H1 2017.

The primary variable in achieving the stated 2017 profit expectation is conversion of opportunity into revenue. If revenues are not achieved as expected, profit will not be achieved as expected. There are, however, solid reasons to anticipate strong and sufficient revenue growth despite some unexpected delays in 2016. YPB is undoubtedly in a much stronger and more prospective position than it was in 2016 given:

- The assembly of the full, new executive team was only completed in Q3 2016. This year management will hit the ground running with greater experience and skill in dealing with client opportunities and barriers to contract closure.

- The opportunity pipeline filled rapidly over 2016, particularly in H2. Starting 2017, new business momentum is strong and leagues ahead of that as at the start of 2016. Not only has the magnitude of the pipeline grown over the past year but the passage of time means the number of mature projects closer to conclusion is also greater than in 2016.

- Key Multiplier Partnerships established in late 2016 with leading packaging companies such as Orora Ltd (ASX:ORA) (OTCMKTS:ORRAF), Impact International and L&E are expected to yield new revenue across multiple clients.

- Ease of conversion to increase following the signing of household name banner clients. Prominent reference clients reduce career risk for client personnel championing YPB's novel technologies.

- Upgraded versions of the key software platforms SECURETRACK and CONNECT being available expected to accelerate the pace of adoption.

- The incidence of competitive solutions being offered to clients presently engaged with YPB remains close to zero.

Finally, in considering whether the revenues necessary for profitability can be achieved, it is pertinent that the size of the opportunity pipeline and potential revenues currently in development are well ahead of the revenues necessary to achieve the company's profit expectations. In other words, only relatively modest pipeline conversion rates are necessary to achieve revenue and profit targets.

Since last updating the market in September 2016, the total pipeline value has fallen from $128m to $112m for three reasons:

- Conversion from pipeline into realised sales and hence removal from the pipeline. This includes client wins such as Blackmores (ASX:BKL), Impact International, L&E, Dan Murphy's, BWS, Lorna Jane and Mama Care;

- Reduction in expected value of certain contracts following refinement of scope as projects have advanced with clients; and

- Seeking to further improve reward for sales efforts, resulting in a range of small value projects being removed from the pipeline for the time being.

Advanced projects value has fallen from $65m to $37m for the three reasons just noted. Intermediate projects has increased from $64m to $75m, partly due to the change in classification from Advanced projects resulting from slippage of clients' timetables. The total number of projects increased from 96 to 98. The number of advanced projects has fallen from 55 to 18 with 26 of the deletions being small projects. The number of Intermediate projects has risen from 41 to 80.

YPB Executive Chairman John Houston said: "After a detailed and exhaustive process we are pleased to be able to reconfirm our profit expectations for 2017, despite slippage in the anticipated timing of breakeven. The refinements to strategy developed in the AOP enhance the prospect of successful execution and the major cost-out decisions increase potential profitability and potential profit leverage without sacrificing opportunity. These changes reflect our determination to secure YPB's future as a highly profitable, self-sustaining and strongly growing business."

Mr. John Houston 
Executive Chairman
YPB Group Limited
T: +61-458-701-088 
E: john.houston@ypbsystems.com 

Mr. Gerard Eakin
YPB Group Limited
T: +61-427-011-596
E: eakin@manifestcapital.com
W: www.ypbsystems.com

Media and Investor Enquiries

Matthew Wright
NWR Communications
T: +61-451-896-420
E: matt@nwrcommunications.com.au

<![CDATA[ YPB Group Ltd (ASX:YPB) Company Update and Appendix 4C ]]> en86811 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/86811/ Wed, 1 Feb 2017 09:32:04 GMT Brand Protection and Customer Engagement solutions company YPB Group Ltd (ASX:YPB) is pleased to provide a summary of activities for the quarter ended 31 December 2016.

- Highest revenue quarter since inception

- Lowest net cash outflow quarter for the year

- Strategy and financial outlook update to be issued in the coming days

Key achievements for the quarter included:

- Concluding a supply agreement with multi-national packaging innovator Orora Limited (ASX:ORA) whereby Orora will offer the YPB PROTECT, DETECT, CONNECT range to its customer base. The supply agreement superseded an MOU with Orora signed in May 2016 and marked the start of the marketing of YPB's solutions to Orora's customers.

- Signing a Master Supply Agreement with Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) allowing YPB's solutions to be employed across the Blackmores range.

- Commencing supply of YPB's invisible tracer to Mamacare, a leading brand of nutritional products for pregnant and nursing mothers, initially to PROTECT its export range.

- Securing 350 new stores with bespoke Retail Anti-Theft solutions. The new customers included Lorna Jane with 200 stores in Australia and USA plus two national chains with 150 stores in total.

- Winning a three year contract with a top tier global pharmaceutical company for forensic laboratory services and IP protection solutions design and implementation.

- Signing a strategic partnership with leading USA packaging design and manufacturing company L&E to offer YPB's full suite of Brand Protection and Customer Engagement solutions to its customer base. L&E's customers include household name global athletic footwear and apparel brands.


Q4 2016 cash flows were in line with expectations and the best for the year. Cash receipts for Q4 were $0.930m the highest quarterly cash receipts ever and up from $0.529m in the Q3. There was some small "catch up" in Q4 from the low Q3 but new business was the primary contributor to the clear improvement.

Gross cash outflows in Q4 were approximately $0.240m lower than Q3, with an accelerated R&D spend offset by lower staff and administration costs. Q4 saw $0.5m R&D spend, half of the year's total, occur in the quarter as development of the CONNECT Customer Engagement software platform was accelerated due to customer interest. This spend level is likely to be maintained in Q l 2017 but then fall quickly in subsequent quarters as presently targeted functionality modules are completed. The 13.7% fall in staff, administration and corporate costs in Q4 was impacted by timing and a modest rise is expected in Q l 2017, though this will remain below Q3 levels.

Due to the higher cash receipts in Q4 and well controlled costs, net cash outflow was the lowest for the year at $1.994m.

A successful equity raising was conducted in Q4 with approximately $4m raised from an existing shareholder at $0.25 per share.

Cash at the end of Q4 was $2.752m, up from $0.600m at the end of Q3.

Please note that the Appendix 4C includes "estimated cash outflows for next quarter" at item 9. This is a gross cash outflows forecast and should not be compared to the net cash flow figure in item 1 of the Appendix 4C. Q l 2017 gross cash outflows are likely to be largely in line with those of Q4 2016.

Please also note that an updated outlook for 2017 will be released to the ASX in the coming days. YPB conducts its annual planning work in late November and December of each year to develop its Annual Operating Plan (AOP). Conclusion of the AOP has taken longer than expected this year due to new strategic opportunities arising during the AOP process. These opportunities would result in expanded market reach and a much lower YPB cost base. Final determination of the plan's details is now in train and will be released to the market as soon as it is concluded.

YPB Executive Chairman John Houston said: "As anticipated, Q4 2016 was the best cashflow quarter for the year and clear progress is being made. We look forward to presenting the updated 2017 outlook to the market in the coming days."

To view full Quarterly Report including Appendix 4C, please visit:

Mr. John Houston 
Executive Chairman
YPB Group Limited
T: +61-458-701-088 
E: john.houston@ypbsystems.com 

Mr. Gerard Eakin
YPB Group Limited
T: +61-427-011-596
E: eakin@manifestcapital.com
W: www.ypbsystems.com

Media and Investor Enquiries

Matthew Wright
NWR Communications
T: +61-451-896-420
E: matt@nwrcommunications.com.au

<![CDATA[ YPB Group Ltd (ASX:YPB) Master Supply Agreement Signed with Blackmores (ASX:BKL) ]]> en85671 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/85671/ Mon, 21 Nov 2016 09:24:50 GMT Brand Protection and Customer Engagement solutions company YPB Group Limited (ASX:YPB) has signed a two-year Master Supply Agreement (MSA) with Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) under which YPB's suite of Brand Protection and Customer Engagement solutions can be deployed across the Blackmores range. The MSA sets the framework for the supply of YPB products and services to Blackmores.

- YPB to provide its full range of products and services to Blackmores under two year agreement

- The momentum in YPB's IP commercialisation plan is building

YPB's PROTECT solution is a patented, invisible, indestructible, uncopiable tracer or marker which can be seamlessly and easily incorporated into plastics, inks and fibres to create protected, intelligent packaging. The tracer is used to confirm the authenticity of a product in conjunction with YPB's patented scanner. The intelligent packaging can then be used with YPB's TRACK AND TRACE solution to DETECT counterfeit goods and ensure supply chain integrity, a major issue for exporters. Finally, the intelligent packaging can become the trigger for a customer to want to CONNECT directly with the brand. As far as YPB is aware it is the only company globally with a complete end-to-end solutions suite allowing a brand to PROTECT its products, DETECT counterfeit and supply chain problems, and CONNECT directly to end customers.

YPB Executive Chairman John Houston said: "The opportunity to work with Blackmores is an important endorsement of our vision to help Western exporters realise the potential of Asia while protecting and growing the value of their brands. With the technologies and talent in place, the commercialisation of our valuable and unique intellectual property is clearly gathering momentum."

Mr. John Houston 
Executive Chairman
T: +61-458-701-088 
E: john.houston@ypbsystems.com 

Mr. Gerard Eakin
T: +61-427-011-596
E: eakin@manifestcapital.com
W: www.ypbsystems.com

<![CDATA[ Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) 2016 AGM Presentation ]]> en85341 Y https://www.abnnewswire.net/press/en/85341/ Thu, 27 Oct 2016 10:26:12 GMT Blackmores Limited (ASX:BKL) (OTCMKTS:BLMMF) is pleased to provide its 2016 AGM Presentation.


"We remain focused on our strategic priorities. Demand for our products continues to grow and we are taking this opportunity to invest in our existing business and to establish new platforms and partnerships to extend our brand and expertise. We are committed to growing this business delivering improved shareholder returns in the coming year."


- Group Sales of $717m, up 52%

- Record NPAT of $100.0m, up 115%

- EBIT margin improvement from 15% to 20%

- Operating cash flow of $84m, up 18%

- Cash conversion ratio of 81%

- Net debt $17m post acquisition of Global Therapeutics

- Earning per share of 581 cents, up 115%

- Dividends were 410 cents, up 102%


- Every region and brand delivered strong growth

- Recognised as one of Australia's best employers by AON Hewitt

- 117 new products launched across the Group

- Significantly invested in infrastructure and new businesses to build future pipeline

- Secured supply in a constrained environment, building reserves of scarce materials

- Acquired Global Therapeutics in May 2016 - Australian market leader in Chinese herbal medicine category

- Entered ASX 100

- Record payouts to key stakeholders - shareholders, staff and Australian Government


- Total current assets have increased by 57% commensurate with business growth

- Inventory increased to $116m to ensure stock is held to meet demand, secured scarce raw materials, plus integration of Global Therapeutics.

- Invested in robotics and quadruple head counters, expanded our facilities footprint and our staff to increase capacity and improve productivity

- High staff engagement


- Exceptional year of performance

- Strong progress on delivering our strategic priorities

- Blackmores now the largest Asia Pacific natural health company

- Asia is increasingly important to our future

- Exited the year with a more diversified business, with a strong balance sheet and built new platforms for growth

- Key stakeholders rewarded


- Pleased with progress delivering strategic priorities

- Advised shareholders that first quarter financial results would be impacted by challenges in Australia

-- Major retailers destocking -- Changes in how exporters acquire products

- Encouraged by strong consumer demand, growing momentum in Asia and BioCeuticals

- Need to develop our business model, build new channels, adapt our cost base and accelerate our transition to support our changing retail landscape


- Blackmores Australia sales down 40% to $68 million

-- Destocking impact circa $17m

-- Changes in how Chinese exporters buy, impact circa $28m

-- 20% of Australian sales influenced by Chinese shoppers

-- Australian consumer demand strong - Blackmores remains leader

- Asia sales contributed $51m, up 75% - Record Quarter

-- China in-country sales contributed $14m, up 135%

-- New China export division contributed $17m, up 356%

-- Total China direct sales $31m, up 222%

- BioCeuticals at $19m, up 17% - Record Quarter

- Global Therapeutics contributed $6m - Record Quarter

- Launched in Indonesia

- Lower volumes resulted in higher recovery costs

- Took immediate action to contain costs


- Australian market improving but remains challenged

-- Sales trajectory improved in the quarter

-- Impact of excess stock in Australia has eased

- Progress made in building new channels

- Blackmores Asia, BioCeuticals and Global Therapeutics all continuing to perform

- Embarked on cost structure review to enable continued investment and build profits

- Unlikely to match exceptional F16 full year profit

- Expect second quarter to be stronger than the first quarter

- Board remains confident in the Group's strategic focus and long-term growth prospects

To view the presentation, please visit:

Sally Townsend
Head of Communications
M: +61-419-225-781

Christine Holgate
Chief Executive Officer
T: +61-2-9910-5186