[16 November/National Business Review]

Manuka honey firm Watson & Son reported a $20 million loss for the year ended 30 June 2017, after making a $4.6 million profit the previous year. This contributed to a $9 million deficit for parent Ngai Tahu Capital, owned by Ngai Tahu Holdings. Ngai Tahu Holdings Chief Executive Mike Sang said Watson & Son was forecasting a profit next year and expected stronger returns in subsequent years. Mr Sang attributed the loss to the honey season downturn and noted land had been revalued and there had been progress in research and development. Mr Sang believed Ngai Tahu Holdings had the balance sheet to support Watson & Son. Mr Sang said Ngai Tahu Holdings was focussed on the separation of the company from ManukaMed.