//Business: Interim Raubex profits are down by more than 130%

Business: Interim Raubex profits are down by more than 130%

Raubex, the listed infrastructure development and construction materials supply group, yesterday warned shareholders its earnings per share for the six months to August 31 were expected to be much worse than it previously forecast.

In a trading statement on July 30, the company said that it expected earnings and headline earnings per share to be at least 80percent lower than the corresponding period.

Yesterday, the company said that earnings and headline earnings per share were expected to be between 130 and 150percent lower than the corresponding period.

This would translate into a loss per share of between 19.4 and 32.3cents, and a headline loss per share of between 17.6 and 29.3cents.

The decrease was due mainly to the effects of the lockdowns, which in South Africa, saw Raubex’s operations only reach near normal levels of operation towards the end of July, after the lockdown started at the end of March.

However, all of its South African operations were now operational.Internationally, in Western Australia, operations performed well during the period and were not materially impacted by Covid-19.

In the rest of Africa, Botswana imposed a 48-day lockdown, which ended on May 20, during which time all operations in the country were suspended.In Mozambique and Namibia, materials handling and crushing operations experienced cross-border logistical issues, which impacted production efficiencies.

In Cameroon, operations were more severely affected by the pandemic including travel restrictions and quarantine periods that personnel were required to comply with both in South African and Cameroonian jurisdictions.

The company maintained a strong balance sheet during the period.Cash and cash equivalents grew to an average daily balance of R1.5billion during August.

The cash balance had been supported by R138.1million received from the disposal of Raubex Property Investments concluded in the prior year.Interest bearing debt amounted to R844.4m at August 31.

“Contract opportunities, which the company has tendered for in the South African construction sector, remain encouraging,” the directors said.

(IOL)