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Kenya consumer goods firm Eveready slides to six-month loss

BUSINESS
By Reuters | June 2nd 2015

Consumer goods firm Eveready posted a loss for the six months to March, blaming its strategic move to exit some export markets, insecurity and a weaker local currency.

Eveready East Africa swung to a loss of 17.7 million shillings ($181,000) in the period from a pretax profit of 44.8 million shillings as sales dropped 18 percent to 602.8 million shillings, the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

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Eveready said revenue declined as it had exited some markets that were unviable in the long term.

Eveready said financing costs had increased as extra funds were needed for the closure of a battery manufacturing plant in the Rift Valley town of Nakuru.

Financing costs had also increased due to a weaker shilling, which has lost about 8 percent against the dollar this year, the company said, adding that insecurity also presented access challenges to some of its local markets.

Somali Islamists have staged a spate of attacks on Kenya which have devastated its vital tourism sector.

The company, which also sells products such as flashlights and razors, said in October it would rely on Energizer Inc's factory in Egypt for battery supplies.

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