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Kenya's Limuru Tea first half profit falls 49 pct on production slump

BUSINESS
By Reuters | August 17th 2015

Kenya's Limuru Tea reported a 49 percent drop in first-half pretax profit after dry weather led to a drop in tea production, but said its second half performance could improve due to better prices.

Pretax profit for the period to end-June fell to 5.2 million shillings ($50,831) the company said on Monday, but said prices and the weather had improved during the second quarter.

"Quarter two of 2015 has witnessed improved prices. If this price trend persists, and the weather conditions keep improving, we expect the revenues in the second half to improve compared to 2014," the tea producer said in a statement.

Limuru Tea said production of black tea fell by 15 percent to 321 tonnes in the first half of this year compared with the same period a year ago. Revenue fell by 12 percent to 42 million shillings, the company said.

A drought earlier this year hurt output in the world's top exporter of black tea, the regulator has said.

The company said it would not pay a dividend, similar to its stance for the first half of 2014.

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