Skip to content

High Liner Foods beats fourth-quarter expectations in transformative year


LUNENBURG, N.S. — High Liner Foods Inc. beat expectations as it capped what the Nova Scotia company called a transformative year.

The Lunenburg-based fisheries company says its net loss for its fourth quarter surged to US$3 million or nine cents per diluted share compared with a loss of US$810,000 or two cents per diluted share a year earlier.

Howeve, excluding one-time items, the company said its adjusted profit more than doubled to US$5.7 million or 17 cents per diluted share for the period ended Dec. 28 compared with US$2.2 million or seven cents per share in same quarter a year earlier.

The improvement flowed from higher prices, exiting low-margin business and improved plant efficiency, partially offset by tariffs on some species imported into the U.S. from China.

Reporting in U.S. dollars, High Liner's revenue fell to US$221.6 million compared with US$242.9 million a year earlier.

The company was expected on average to earn an adjusted profit of eights cents per share on US$216 million in revenue, according to financial markets data firm Refinitiv.

For the year ended Dec. 28, High Liner reported its net income fell to US$10.3 million or 30 cents per diluted share on US$942.2 million in revenue. That compared with net income of US$16.8 million or 50 cents per diluted share on nearly US$1.05 billion in revenue in 2018.

However, High Liner reported its adjusted profit rose to US$29.1 million or 85 cents per share compared with US$17 million or 51 cents per share in 2018.

While it only sells fish in North America, High Liners says China is an important source of its processing.

"Chinese processors are central to the company's supply chain operating efficiently and, therefore, it is closely monitoring the current coronavirus disease outbreak and reviewing options, should they be required, to mitigate the impact of any prolonged disruption in supply from any of the company's Chinese suppliers," it said in a news release.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 26, 2020.

Companies in this story: (TSX:HLF).

The Canadian Press