Agriculture gives boost to Cervus

A strong year in the agricultural sector allowed Cervus LP (TSX:CVL.UN) to nearly double its net earnings in 2008, despite a construction slowdown.

A strong year in the agricultural sector allowed Cervus LP (TSX:CVL.UN) to nearly double its net earnings in 2008, despite a construction slowdown.

Cervus, which operates agricultural and industrial equipment dealerships in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, reported on Tuesday that it earned $22.2 million on revenues of $348.7 million last year. That compares with net earnings of $11.4 million and revenues of $305 million in 2007.

The limited partnership, which originated in Red Deer but now has its head office in Calgary, operates 19 John Deere, JCB Construction and Bobcat dealer stores.

A news release issued by Cervus said net earnings from sales in its agricultural equipment segment jumped 416 per cent from 2007, the consequence of strong grain prices and rising farm incomes.

By contrast, net earnings from Cervus’s construction equipment segment were down 24 per cent from the previous year. This was attributed to decreased activity in Alberta’s housing and construction sectors.