BIDVEST:  19,122   +232 (+1.23%)  20/09/2018 00:00

South Africa's Bidvest reports 12.5 pct rise in annual profit

(Adds CEO quote, details)

JOHANNESBURG, Sept 3 (Reuters) - South African trading, distribution and services firm Bidvest Group reported a 12.5 percent rise in annual earnings on Monday supported by cost-saving measures.

Normalised headline earnings per share (HEPS) for the year to June 30 rose to 1,254.9 cents from 1,115.4 cents a year earlier. The figure excludes acquisition costs and amortisation of acquired customer contracts.

Bidvest, which also operates in financial services and freight management, made a number of acquisitions last year, including that of management services group Noonan in an attempt to grow internationally.

"Given the difficult economic and operating environment this past year, it is very pleasing that Bidvest has grown normalised HEPS. The continued profit growth proves the Bidvest's operating model remains relevant to our customers," group Chief Executive Lindsay Ralphs said in a statement.

Group revenue increased by 8.4 percent to 77 billion rand ($5.24 billion), with 5.2 billion rand of the increase attributable to the acquired international services businesses. Trading profit rose 8.2 percent to 6.5 billion rand.

Bidvest, which traces its roots back to 1988 when it entered the food services industry, said it remains committed to the disposal of assets but only at fair value.

Over the last year, Bidvest's divisional management evaluated all businesses and discontinued some smaller operations.

These included fishing and related operations in Namibia, security businesses in West-Africa and the Middle East and some industrial service businesses.

($1 = 14.7029 rand) (Reporting by Nqobile Dludla; editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar and Jason Neely)

2018-09-03 08:19:59

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