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Energy Mad first-half loss widens

Thursday 29 Nov 2012 2:11 p.m.

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Quality control problems with energy-efficient light bulbs in the Australian market have widened Christchurch-based Energy Mad's first-half loss.

The loss was $500,000 in the six months ended September 30, from a loss of $300,000 a year earlier, the company said.

That missed its initial public offering forecast for a $1.7 million profit.

Sales rose 47 percent to $4.8m, about half the $9.8m revenue it had forecast.

The company sold the shares at $1 apiece in its IPO in October 2011. They fell five cents to 54 cents on the NZX on Thursday.

The company has been aiming to ride a global wave of demand for energy-efficient bulbs as more countries phase out incandescent and halogen bulbs.

First half sales in its largest market of Australia fell 4.8 percent to $1.99m, while in the US sales more than tripled to $1.6m and sales in New Zealand jumped to $924,757 from $108,815.

It made no sales in the rest of the world compared a $416,563 a year earlier.

The company made zero sales of its 12 volt Ecobulb in Australia in the first half, a $3.1m shortfall, while sales of its 240V Ecobulb downlight were $1.3m short of target.

There was no production of the 12V Ecobulbs in the period because of required design changes, it said.

It also suffered premature failures of the 240V Ecobulb downlight which it said were due to a poor connection that forced it to revise the design.

As a result, Australian customers "lost confidence" in the product.

It is more confident for the outlook for a new dimmable 12V Ecobulb.

To speed product development the company hired two technicians in Christchurch rather than just rely on work done at its Chinese factory.


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