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“But the outlook is very positive. Jamaica remains accessible to tourists and can attract people looking for value, so we expect a robust sector performance despite jiggers,” he said.

CPJ recorded yearly net profit of US$1.12 million, a dip of approximately five per cent from J$1.18 million in 2010.

Hart, whose company now qualifies for a tax holiday having listed on the junior stock market, attributes the drop solely to a deferred tax charge.

US$917,000 tax bill

“CPJ financial yearend coincided with an upfront charge of US$180,000 in deferred taxes which sent the overall tax bill to US$917,000, or J$79 million, as well as US$200,000 of unrecoverable GCT inputs and an increase in special consumption taxes per litre of alcoholic content,” said Hart.

“While the distribution firm will enjoy a tax holiday as a result of listing on the Junior Stock Exchange on July of this year, its actual general consumption and special consumption taxes are on the upswing as the company pushes to improve its inventory of liquor and specialty products to the tourist sector,” Hart said.

CPJ’s gross operating revenue for the year was US$63.9 million, up from US$61.3 million.

“We stop distributing Red Bull in March 2010. This year we recovered and increased sales by four per cent; and we see the retail and hospitality segment growing,” Hart said.

CPJ said its Kingston store under construction is projected to add sales of some US$3 million annually once operational. And while Hart did not disclose figures, he said the upgrade of the company’s processing plant in home city Montego Bay is projected to add substantially more to CPJ’s capacity.

“We are focusing on growth in the retail area and we think that the upgrade of the plant will open up doors for locally produced products,” he said.

CPJ is a 17-year-old company offering products in the beverage, frozen food, wines and spirit market.

The stock is now trading at $2.70 on the JSE Junior Exchange.

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