The integrated construction services, materials and infrastructure investment group saw revenue from continuing operations increase to 7.6 billion rand for the six months ending 31 December 2013 from 4.9 billion rand for the same period in 2012.
“The sentiment in the markets in which the group traded for the six months to 31 December 2013 is gradually improving, with South African demand still comparatively weak and the timing of a recovery remaining uncertain. The rest of Africa and Eastern Europe are demonstrating more visible opportunity,” [DATA GRF:Group Five Limited] said.
“Despite the hiatus in the South African market, the group managed to deliver improved results, with increased revenue, operating profit and earnings. The group earnings delivered during the period demonstrate an improved performance over the comparable reporting period and were delivered following the corrective action taken in the last two years, specifically with regard to the construction materials cluster and the group's Middle East operations.”
Operating profit was up from 257 million rand in the six months ended 31 December 2012 to 328 million rand in the 2013 period, profit after taxation from continuing operations increased from 180 million rand to 221 million rand and headline earnings were up from 139 million rand to 203 million rand.
“The difference between earnings and headline earnings in the prior year is mainly as a result of an impairment charge of 11.5 million rand on assets relating to the disposal of the construction materials businesses. This is reflected as non-current assets classified as held for sale on the group's statement of financial position,” said Group Five.
Earnings per share from continuing operations increased from 1.72 rand in the 2012 period to 2.02 in 2013.
“The markets in which the group currently trades still remain comparatively weak. However, the group's strategies and positioning in new and traditional target markets have and will continue to mitigate some of this weakness,” it said.
“The outlook for the business in the short term is fair to good. The order book is being replenished in line with the group's strategy, with several strong short term prospects in support of African expansion, particularly in power, transport infrastructure and real estate.”