PPC shares drop on lower HEPS forecast

27 January 2015

PPC’s share price fell by 8.6% on Monday on reports that it expects headline earnings per share (HEPS) for the six months to end March 31, could be 45% lower than in the same period the previous year. By 15:50, its shares had recovered and were 4.69% lower than Friday’s closing price.

The company, which was considering the merits of a merger proposal by AfriSam in December, reported that its HEPS were likely to be between 53c and 72c – between 25% and 45% lower than in the first half of the previous financial year.

“The main contributors to the decline were a one-off tax credit in the prior reporting year and an increase in finance costs in the current year,” explained PPC.

PPC said it was finalising a transaction with the IDC to increase its stake in Habesha Cement Company, in Ethiopia, to 51%. Habesha was building a $135-million, 1.4-million-tonne-a-year facility to be commissioned in 2016.

In addition, civil and mechanical construction had been completed at a 600 000 t/y cement plant in Rwanda where production would commence in the second half of 2015.

PPC would release its interim results on May 19.

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