Murray & Roberts H1 diluted HEPS up 25 per cent to 86 cents

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For the six months of Financial Year 2014, the Group generated revenue of R19 billion compared to R16.3 billion in December 2012 and reported attributable profit of R724 million compared to R262 million in December 2012.

“This significant growth was primarily recorded in discontinued operations which include profit on disposal of the Group’s construction products businesses,” Murray & Roberts said in a statement

Diluted earnings per share was 175 cents compared to 64 cents per share in 2012. Diluted headline earnings per share was 86 cents compared to 69 cents per share posted in December 2012 and diluted continuing headline earnings per share was 62 cents compared to 44 cents posted in December 2012 representing growth of 41 per cent.

On the projects power programme, Revenues decreased 10 per cent to R2.3 billion compared to R2.5 billion reported in December 2012, whilst  operating profit increased to R47 million compared to R35 million posted in December 2012. Work on the Eskom power programme returned acceptable financial results and reduced losses were reported for the engineering businesses.

The Board resolved not to declare a dividend for the six months under review.

The company said it was in the final year of its three-year Recovery & Growth strategy, which returned the Group to profitability and established a foundation for growth.

“The Group successfully delivered its Recovery Year and has substantially achieved all of the strategic objectives that were set for its two Growth Years. Profitability in the South African operations continues to be a priority”.

Murray & Roberts said the Recovery & Growth plan created a stronger financial basis and returned focus to the Group’s core competency of engineering and construction, with increased emphasis on the natural resources markets of oil & gas and metals & minerals, which have been identified as the sectors presenting the best sustainable growth potential in the medium-to long term.

The company said implementation of the Group’s hub-and-spoke strategy for Africa was progressing well. 

“Representative offices have been established in West Africa (Ghana – Accra) since January 2013 and in Central Africa (Zambia – Kitwe) since October 2013.  The office in Maputo, Mozambique, will be opened in the first quarter of calendar year 2014. Extensive market engagement is underway to develop business opportunities in these regions”.

At 31 December 2013, the Group’s net cash position was R2 billion compared to R1.1 billion posted in December 2012 and this is after the conclusion of the R4.4 billion Clough transaction in December 2013. 

The Group’s order book moderately decreased to R44.9 billion compared to 48.3 billion posted in December 2012 which is considered to be a strong position given the continued softness in several of the Group’s markets.