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Beverage, snack, personal-care and clothing group AVI is solid and well run. Its model is all about balancing selling price against volumes, reacting appropriately to the competition and intelligently ensuring that market share remains respectable. The group posted interim results to December 2017 that CEO Simon Crutchley describes as a decent set of numbers and reasonable performance, considering the challenging consumer environment. Ron Klipin of Cratos Wealth says that although results appear to be relatively subdued the quality of management operating in an extremely challenging environment has once again proved its mettle. Revenue was up only 2.3% as it was not easy to gain volume momentum and most growth came from price increases.The gross profit margin, which is sensitive to the volatile exchange rate, recovered as cost inputs were helped by the strengthening rand. In summarising the earnings, Klipin notes "there was tight control on expenses at only 2.1% up, resulting in ope...

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