August 21, 2012 / 8:47 PM / 5 years ago

New Zealand's Trade Me posts better than expected profit

WELLINGTON, Aug 22 (Reuters) - New Zealand online trading company Trade Me Ltd on Wednesday reported a maiden full-year profit of NZ$75.6 million ($61.40 million), and said it was on track to meet its profit target through the end of December.

Profits for the 12 months to June 30 was above guidance of NZ$65 million stated when the company was floated.

The online auction operator, which is New Zealand’s most widely visited website, said it would pay a dividend of 7.8 cents per share against its forecast of 6.8 cents stated in prospectus.

Trade Me said it was on track to meets its December 2012 target of a NZ$68.5 million net profit.

“In the longer term, we’re confident about the prospects of our business and its foundations,” said Chief Executive Officer Jon Macdonald.

“Growth in mobile, online retail, and the migration of advertising yield online all provide excellent opportunities for Trade Me over the coming years.”

Shares in Trade Me closed at NZ$3.97 on Tuesday, compared with an issue price of NZ$2.70 a share when it was floated last December by Australian publisher Fairfax Ltd.

Fairfax sold an additional 15 percent in Trade Me in June, reducing its stake to 51 percent, as part of deep cost-cutting measures. ($1 = 1.2312 New Zealand dollars) (Reporting by Naomi Tajitsu)

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