Listed battery company Eveready has announced a 160% increase in losses to Ksh303.5 million for the 12 months ended December 2019 up from the Ksh116.3 million posted the previous year.
The company has been in negative territory ever since it shut down its Nakuru plant after being driven out of the market by cheap imports that forced the company to revert to distributing batteries sourced from its Egypt affiliate.
Eveready’s results show that losses before tax reduced by 37% to Ksh106.9 million in December 2019 from Ksh166.9 million the previous year.
Losses from overhead expenses also reduced by 25% from Ksh217.5 million in December 2018 to Ksh163.5 million at the end of last year.
However, gross profit increased to Ksh36.6 million at the end of December 2019 from Ksh31.6 million in December 2018.
Company Managing Director Margaret Odhiambo says the company has embarked on reviewing its capital commitments that involve focussing on fully profitable product segments.
“In FY 2019, we focussed on investing in products that prioritize a return for our business notably the automotive segment. This resulted to actions being completed in Q2 which restructured our organisation to deliver on our identified key growth areas,” said Odhiambo in the statement.
“The challenge in transition was replacement revenue which though reversible was an anticipatory transitionary challenge,” added Odhiambo.
In 2014, the company announced change in strategy after failing to weather insurmountable competition from cheap imports.
Since then, the company has been distributing batteries in Kenya manufactured in other countries.
In its heydey, Eveready was a huge brand omnipresent in the market but was killed by the cheap imports.
The company now sells Turbo Shika Pawa batteries.