NOU) The CEO was unfazed by the $161 million loss

Milklab maker Noumi pins hopes on continued growth of its prized brand to reverse a balance sheet hit by costly dispute resolution, high dairy prices, geopolitical instability triggered by Russia and COVID-19 disruption .

Noumi (formerly Freedom Foods), which also makes other beverage and milk powder brands including Australia’s Own, Vital Strength and Uprotein, on Monday disclosed earnings, revenue and earnings that regressed in fiscal 2022.

Milklab was the bright spot in Noumi's 2022 results.

Milklab was the bright spot in Noumi’s 2022 results. Credit:Janie Barrett/SMH

The company suffered a $161.1 million net loss after tax, increasing from $38.6 million in 2021. Adjusted operating EBITDA and revenue fell 68% and 5%, respectively.

Noumi’s net loss was due to its costly deal with a former supplier, US almond farmer Blue Diamond, which took a $55.6 million bite, as well as a $95 non-cash asset impairment. .7 million amid high input costs and skyrocketing farm-gate milk prices, which have been passed on to consumers.

But the popularity of cult favorite Milklab fueled a surge in sales of plant-based beverages, one of the few bright spots in Noumi’s 2022 results.

Noumi's boss, Michael Perich, says the company is still in the midst of a bumpy phase of transformation.

Noumi’s boss, Michael Perich, says the company is still in the midst of a bumpy phase of transformation.

Milklab sales rose 18.7 percent to $49.8 million. More broadly, revenue from its plant-based beverage business increased 7.2% to $164 million and adjusted operating EBITDA increased 30.3% to $33.4 million.

Noumi CEO Michael Perich, who took over the top job after a spectacular corporate implosion in mid-2020, said he remained committed to the company.

“I am absolutely excited about the potential of this business,” said Perich.noting Australia’s role as a “dinner plate” for Asia.

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