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Energy Mad share rise perfect timing

NZN 30/03/2016 Sophie Boot

Energy Mad shares rose after the company pushed out the timing to achieve positive earnings by a year and said co-founder Chris Mardon left the company's board to focus on growing its Australian business.

The shares climbed 1.7 cents, or 51 per cent, to 5 cents in the first half-hour of trading. The stock has tumbled since listing in 2011 after being sold in an initial public offering at $1 apiece.

The unprofitable lightbulb maker will not deliver positive earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation in 2016 because of restructuring and one-off freight costs, it said in a statement. It posted an ebitda loss of $2.7 million in the year ended May 31, 2015.

Australian revenue in the last quarter of 2016 grew to $3 million, five times that of the first quarter's $600,000, due sales of its Ecobulb LEDs to Australian state government energy efficiency schemes, the company said.

It expects that revenue growth to continue through 2017, and has forecast positive ebitda and cash flow for the year on that basis.

At the same time, Energy Mad said managing director and co-founder Chris Mardon stepped down from the board to focus on the Australian market, having already resigned as chief executive in February 2013 to focus on sales growth. His place on the board has been filled by David Jarman, who is chief financial officer of Christchurch-based Leighs Construction and a director at Cresta Composites and Castlebraid.

The company's chief executive and chief financial officer Paul Ravlich resigned this month after three years, following Energy Mad's decision to disestablish the then-joint role. Ravlich departs tomorrow.

In November, the company that counts NZX's SuperLife unit as its biggest shareholder almost halved its first-half loss to $656,000 after slashing staff costs and winding back sales commissions and other external fees.

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