Headline earnings per share ended 50 per cent higher at 96 cents per share in 2014 compared to 64 cents per share in 2013.
[DATA PPC:PPC LTD]’s operating profit was also up to 865 million rand in 2014 compared to 751 million rand during the same period in 2013.
The company attributed the gains to increased export volumes, consolidation of sales from Safika Cement and CIMERWA, improved cement pricing and the favourable impact of the devaluation of the rand against both the US dollar and Botswana pula.
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“PPC’s group cement sales ended 2 per cent higher during this reporting period. Improvements in export sales and the consolidation of sales from our Rwanda operation and newly acquired Safika Cement business were partly offset by declining sales volumes in South Africa and Botswana. Our rest of Africa expansion strategy is progressing well,” PPC’s chief executive officer, Ketso Gordhan said.
Cost of sales were 9 per cent higher recording a 2.7 billion rand up from 2.5 billion rand in 2013 this was in line with revenue growth, resulting in gross profit increment of 10 per cent to 1.3 billion up from 1.2 billion rand in 2013.
Administration and other operating expenditure increased by 26 per cent to 480 million rand from 381 million rand in 2013.
“Over half of the growth in administration and other operating expenditure can be attributed to new businesses and currency movements; particularly, the additional costs incurred in executing our African expansion strategy as well as the consolidation of Safika Cement and CIMERWA overhead costs,” PPC noted.
On the downside, Zimbabwe indigenisation costs was up by three per cent to 884 million rand in 2014 from 862 million rand in 2013.
PPC said that a slowdown in the Zimbabwean economy had led to muted domestic growth in cement sales. However, increased efforts to export product from Zimbabwe to neighbouring countries had boosted cement sales volumes from these operations.
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Cash generated from operations amounted to 780 million rand lower compared to one billion rand in 2013 due to negative working capital movements.
Industrial action on the platinum belt as well as above-average rainfall in the Inland regions had a severely negative impact on cement sales volumes in South Africa.