Brisbane Business News uncovers the city's leading companies and the stories behind their success.
Market Cap April 15: $17.29b
CEO: Patrick Snowball
HY15 Revenue: $8.46b
HY15 Profit: $631m
SUNCORP has increased its profit and boosted its December half-year dividend despite top line growth tracking single digits.
The company suffered a $250 million blow from the Brisbane hailstorm last November, which may make a 10 per cent return on equity target for this financial year more difficult to reach, according to CEO Patrick Snowball.
Suncorp's general insurance division, which contributes the largest portion of the group's revenue and profit, netted a profit of $419 million, down 11 per cent from the previous corresponding period.
However, its banking and life insurance divisions saw profit rises of 68 per cent and 291 per cent respectively. Read More
Market Cap April 15: $10.51b
CEO: Lance Hockridge
HY15 Revenue: $1.97b
HY15 Profit: $308m
ALTHOUGH Aurizon's revenue in HY15 remained flat at $1.97 billion, its profit rose 188 per cent to $308 million.
The company credits "transformation benefits" for a $57 million reduction in operating costs, while it has also removed a surplus fleet and started running longer trains in Blackwater, Newlands, and the Hunter Valley corridors.
The company admits there are short-term challenges for companies that rely on coal and iron ore demand, but it believes that mid- and long-term demand will be strong. It experienced a $12 million revenue drop and 14 per cent volume decline in its iron ore operations in HY15, although coal revenue rose by $12 million.
It has $1 billion in cash on the books. Aurizon is currently in exclusive negotiations with the federal government over the development of a freight hub at Moorebank in Sydney, which it believes will unlock transport gridlock. Read More
Market Cap April 15: $5.83b
CEO: Robbie Cooke
HY15 Profit: $139.8m
SMART gambling - if it exists, Tatts has it covered.
The group has boosted its profit just over 1 per cent from the prior corresponding period, bearing in mind this comes at a time of increased investment in physical and digital infrastructure.
Digital is a central tenet of the company's strategy, on the back of online sales seeing the most growth out of all divisions in the half year to December.
Physical wagering sales declined in Queensland over the period, but the group is confident its "smart" strategy of integrating more technology in its stores through its UBET launch in April will deliver a promising payoff. Read More
Market Cap April 15: $5.12b
CEO: Jon Sutton
HY15 Revenue: $537m
HY15 Profit: $154m
BANK of Queensland attributed cash earnings of $167 million for the half year to lending growth, strong net interest margin performance and asset quality improvements.
Statutory profit was up 14 per cent to $154 million, compared to the previous period.
Despite the strong results, the financial institution maintained a cautious stance and will focus on low-risk strategies and sustainable growth.
BOQ reported strong growth in the home-loan market, particularly in Queensland.
The bank also absorbed Virgin Money Australia into its core retail banking service in March, leading to a senior executive reshuffle. Read More
Market Cap April 15: $4.14b
CEO: Graham Turner
HY15 Revenue: $1.1b
HY15 Profit: $100.3m
FLIGHT Centre, a company with an appetite for diversification, continues to fly a steady course during a tumultuous time for air travel.
The group's underlying profit may have declined 7 per cent, but its projected full-year result, of between $360 million and $390 million, still compares to last year's profit of $376.5 million.
The Australian leisure market has slumped for the 29-brand strong company in recent times.
This has offset record sales in overseas markets, while other domestic hurdles include rising staff costs as the company expands its footprint and incurs wage increases.
However, Flight Centre anticipates organic growth being on its side and intends to capitalise on this by targeting three core customers. Read More
Market Cap April 15: $3.81b
CEO: Matt Bekier
HY15 Revenue: $1.14b
HY15 Profit: $97m
CURRENTLY vying for Queen's Wharf, a game-changing Brisbane hotel and casino development, Echo has behind it a profitable reporting period that backs its proposal.
The group's eastern seaboard properties - The Star Sydney, Jupiters Gold Coast and Treasury Brisbane - all collected profits that were higher than the same period last year.
Overall, the group enjoyed a profit increase of 111 per cent. With that, gambling and gaming were both up, supported by a sharp increase of 86.1 per cent from the group's international VIP business. Read More
Market Cap April 15: $3.24b
CEO: Don Meij
HY15 Revenue: $343.60m
HY15 Profit: $29.1m
WHOEVER said fast food is a dying industry obviously didn't have Domino's Pizza Enterprises shares.
The company's foray into overseas markets from Asia to Europe has been successful, even in places where pizza isn't traditionally the go-to convenience food, such as Japan.
With a NPAT up 44.2 per cent, owing to cost leadership and digital innovation inviting stronger sales, shareholders will delight in a fully-franked dividend up 39 per cent from the previous corresponding period. Read More
8. ALS LIMITED (ALQ)
COMMERCIAL SERVICES & SUPPLIES
Market Cap April 15: $2.11b
CEO: Greg Kilmister
HY15 Revenue: $769.1m (Half-year to September 30)
HY15 Profit: $58.4m (Half-year to September 30)
FOR the half-year to September 30, ALS recorded an underlying profit of $68 million, up from its original guidance of $64 million.
However, reduced mining exploration and price pressure resulted in a lower overall profit margin.
The segment revenue from ALS Energy fell from 25 per cent of total revenue in HY14 to 11 per cent in HY15.
Average prices for environmental services in Australia have declined by 10 per cent over the past 12 months, but ALS "remains focused on right-sizing the business."
In October 2014, ALS divested its hospitality business Reward Distribution, generating a spare $22 million.
In the same month the company entered into a $275 million, three-year, multi-currency debt facility with five Australian and international banks.
Market Cap April 15: $2.03b
CEO: Peter Birtles
HY15 Revenue: $1.16b
H15 Profit: $33.6m
THE retailer behind Super Cheap Auto, Rebel Sports and Ray's Outdoors, has reported a 45.5 per cent fall in its net profit in the 26 weeks to December 27, 2014.
Super Retail Group nearly halved its first-half profit to $33.6 million, from $61.6 million, after carrying out a major restructure of the business.
The company declared an interim fully-franked dividend of 18.5c a share, while net profit was $58.1 million and revenue dropped 5.7 per cent to $1.16 billion.
CEO Peter Birtles says the overall results were reflective of a solid contribution from the auto and sports division, offset by a lower contribution from the leisure division. Read More
Market Cap April 15: $2.48b
CEO: Shane Stephan
HY15 Revenue: $269.1m (Half-year to January 2015)
H15 Loss: $23.1m (Half-year to January 2015)
IMPAIRMENTS costs and similar write-offs worth $57.4 million drove New Hope to a $23 million loss in HY15, despite record coal sales of 3.1 million tonnes.
About 2.5 million tonnes came from the New Acland operation in Queensland, which New Hope expects to continue until 2029.
More than three million tonnes went to international buyers, with its already small domestic market shrinking by a further 18 per cent.
The company has focused on bringing down operating costs, reducing the fuel cost per tonne sold by 35 per cent, from $6.48 to $4.22.
Administrative costs per tonne sold have fallen by 38 per cent, from $2.31 to $1.43.
New Hope also recorded its best-ever safety performance in the last quarter of 2014. It has announced an interim dividend of 4c, down from 6c in HY14. Read More
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