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API profit jumps 19.8%, eyes solid growth

AAP logoAAP 19/10/2016

Australian Pharmaceutical Industries has lifted full-year profit almost 20 per cent and expects the opening of another 20 Priceline Pharmacy stores to help deliver solid 2016/17 results.

Profit for the 12 months to August 31 rose 19.8 per cent to $51.6 million on an 11.1 per cent increase in revenue, to $3.83 billion.

Chief executive and managing director Stephen Roche said the main drivers of the increased profit and revenue were sales growth at it's Priceline Pharmacy network and its pharmacy distribution business.

Overall retail sales were up 7.6 per cent to $1.15 billion, and up 11.7 per cent to $2 billion with dispensary sales included.

"The sales growth has been driven by two factors: by attracting new franchise partners to the brand to expand the network and by increasing comparable store sales," Mr Roche said in a statement.

"We're continuing to take market share in the key categories of colour cosmetics, skincare, over-the-counter health and prescriptions which together are the heartland of our business."

Mr Roche also said revenue of the company's pharmacy distribution business, which services Soul Pattinson, Pharmacist Advice and API's own Club Premium program, grew by 11.2 per cent in the period, primarily due to new high-value hepatitis C treatments, which grew by 4.8 per cent.

"Our market position has remained very steady and consistent during the past year, which in a highly competitive market reflects a strong offer to pharmacists across a range of services," he said.

API was eyeing solid growth in the current year amid plans to open another 20 Priceline Pharmacy outlets and improvements in operations due to previous capital investments.

"The business has made long term investments that have underpinned the company for ongoing growth," Mr Roche said.

"This will enable management to continue growing the business, adapt to changes and ultimately deliver strong returns to shareholders in the foreseeable future."

API'S SOLID RESULTS:

* Net profit up 19.8pct, to $51.6m

* Revenue up 11.1pct to $3.8b

* Final dividend up 1.5 cents to 3.5 cents, taking full-year distribution to six cents, fully franked.

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