New Zealand’s Halo Food has entered voluntary administration after an unsuccessful conclusion to a strategic review.
The Australia-listed company announced the review in May to “consider all options available” to Halo Food, including “divestment, other M&A and/or partnership opportunities”.
However, administrators and receivers have now been appointed.
“Unfortunately, the process has not delivered to expectations and financial support to the company has been withdrawn,” Halo Food, which traded as milk powder manufacturer Keytone Dairy until 2021, announced in a filing with the Australian Securities Exchange today (25 August).
An annual general meeting scheduled for 31 August “will no longer proceed”, according to the brief statement.
Halo Food’s decision comes despite raising cash earlier this month from the sale of The Healthy Mummy weight-loss business. It sold the operation to Australian hair loss and healthcare company Mosh for A$588,540 ($377,869), a fraction of the A$20m it paid in a 2022 deal.
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The Healthy Mummy subsidiary, which produces nutrition weight-loss products such as smoothies, meals and snacks, was initially put up for review in March before the overview was extended in May to encompass all of Halo Food’s operations and businesses.
“The board has formed an opinion that the value of the underlying businesses’ units may be worth substantially more than the implied values based on the current listed market value of the company,” the company said then.
Other brands in the portfolio include Tonik protein bars and shakes supplied to the Australian market and Gran’s Fudge. Halo Food also owns the former Omniblend business, an Australian manufacturer of milk powders and UHT dairy drinks acquired in 2019.
Christchurch-based Halo Food is also a contract manufacturer for brands in Australia and New Zealand, as well as a supplier of private-label products.
Halo Food has three manufacturing facilities in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia, and another in Christchurch, New Zealand.
For the fiscal year to 31 March, Halo Food generated preliminary revenue of A$83.9m, up 40% on the previous 12 months. Contract manufacturing in Australia accounted for A$53.7m, the New Zealand dairy business A$12.7m and branded sales amounted to A$3.6m.
In the previous financial year, sales were A$59.9m, an increase of 18%. EBITDA turned to a A$2.3m profit from a A$2.3m loss in the prior year.
Halo Food said today that Rahul Goyal, Kate Conneely and Michael Korda of KordaMentha have been appointed as administrators. The receivers are accountancy house KPMG, led by David Hardy, Ryan Eagle and Emily Seeckts.