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FOCOL’s profit up 5.7%

Net income at Freeport Oil Company Ltd(FOCOL)was up 5.7 percent year-on-year for its first quarter, coming in at$4.85 million for the period ended October 31, 2010, according to an unaudited consolidated financial report released yesterday.

FOCOL’s Chairman Sir Albert Miller said in a release yesterday that recent investments and improvements in FOCOL’s operations allowed the company to maintain profits despite difficult times. The company also increased dividends, paying$0.07 per share for the quarter ended October 31, 2010, up from$0.06 for the comparable period last year.

Sales and revenue for the period were$68.48 million, up 14.9 percent from$59.58 million for the same period the previous year. Basic earnings per share for the three-month period were up by$0.01 to$0.13, year-on-year.

Cost of sales for the first period showed a sharp spike, up 18 percent to 56.3 million for the first quarter, from 47.73 million for the same period last year. Marketing, administrative and general costs were up$200,000 or 3.1 percent to$6.65 million for the first quarter. Depreciation fell by 3.1 percent to$690,000, compared to$712,000 for the first quarter of the previous year.

FOCOL’s balance sheet as at October 31, 2010 grew to$140.53 million. According to the statement by Sir Albert, the company is positioning itself to take advantage of strategic opportunities that could arise from eliminating long-term debt.

At October 31, 2010, liabilities stood at$25.44 million, up from the quarter ended July 31, 2010($23.7 million), but down from the October 31, 2009 amount of$27.22 million. For the first quarter of the 2010/2011 period, finance costs dropped 99.2 percent to$1,000 compared to the same quarter in the 2009/2010 period, when finance costs were$118,000.

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