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South Africa's Mediclinic full-year core earnings up 3 percent

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South African private hospital group Mediclinic reported a 3 percent rise in annual core profit on Thursday, boosted by a recovery in its Middle Eastern operations.

Mediclinic, which also owns Switzerland's largest private hospital group Hirslanden, said core earnings - or adjusted earnings before tax, interest, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) - rose to 522 million pounds ($698 million) in the year ended March from 509 million a year earlier.

A constituent of the FTSE 100 index with a secondary listing in Johannesburg, Mediclinic has been struggling to grow at home due to a weak economy while regulatory headwinds in Switzerland have also hobbled growth.

In response, the company placed a $2 billion bet on Middle East two years ago with the acquisition of Al Noor Hospital.

"A key achievement was the strong second half

performance in Abu Dhabi which, combined with the continued strong delivery in Dubai and the exciting expansion opportunities ahead, is laying the foundations for further growth across the Middle East division," outgoing chief executive Danie Meintjes said in statement.

Mediclinic also owns a third of Britain's Spire Healthcare. It tried and failed to buy out the remaining shares last year.

($1 = 0.7483 pounds)

(Reporting by Tiisetso Motsoeneng; editing by Mark Potter and Jason Neely)

2018-05-24 09:20:14

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