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Kresta’s new CEO follows tough trading period

Released at the end of August, Kresta’s ASX statement on its annual report for the year ended 30 June 2012 describes the FY2012 as a “challenging” trading period in which group revenues declined from $115,489,000 in the 2011 financial year to $110,896,000 for the 2012 financial year.

“Although the Group recorded a profit after tax of $791,000 for the 2012 financial year compared to a loss after tax of $781,000 for the 2011 financial year, underlying EBIT loss of $1,728,000 was incurred compared with an underlying EBIT profit of $2,298,000 in 2011.

The result for FY12 was assisted by a pre-tax gain of $3,598,000 on the sale of land and a building which were surplus to the Group’s needs. In August Kresta confirmed that the offer to purchase its factory unit in Malaga had become unconditional and was scheduled for settlement on 3 November 2012. The sale price of the building was set at $3.8 million with proceeds from the sale to be applied to the company’s working capital, with $1.8 million being used to reduce bank debt. The group stated that the factory unit was surplus to the company’s needs.

The group also incurred expenses of $1,277,000 (compared to $925,000 in 2011) associated with restructuring announced in August 2011.

The results announcement closely followed Kresta’s confirmation of the appointment of Giuliano “Jules” Di Bartolomeo as Chief Executive Officer, effective 20 August 2012.

In a statement to the ASX the company described Di Bartolomeo as “a proven and success-driven executive who led the transformation and profitable growth of QBE Limited’s consumer business operations in Western Australia.” Di Bartolomeo has an MBA from Curtin University and has held a number of senior general management, marketing and sales roles within both retail and wholesale environments.

Kresta chairman John Molloy said the appointment aligned well with the group’s plans to achieve a more efficient structure and deliver sustainable, profitable growth.

“We are delighted to secure the services of a high calibre, experienced executive such as Mr Di Bartolomeo to lead the company, and we look forward to his contribution to Kresta’s future growth and success,” Molloy said.

“Mr Di Bartolomeo’s management experience will prove invaluable as we work towards the company’s key objectives of strengthening the management team, improving customer service, ensuring efficient in house core manufacturing, developing strong relationships with our suppliers and continuing to develop Kresta’s strong brands.”

Tass Zorbas, interim CEO and founder of Kresta Blinds, will remain in an advisory role to the new CEO.

“On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank Mr Zorbas for his continued contribution to the Company, particularly for his service as Interim CEO over the past three months,” Molloy said.

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