(Corrects to clarify in first paragraph that last year’s profit was hit by a writedown on the group’s Venezuelan business)
JOHANNESBURG, Aug 30 (Reuters) - South African drugmaker Aspen Pharmacare said on Wednesday that it expects full-year profit to climb by as much as 48 percent from last year when it was hit by a writedown on its Venezuelan business.
Aspen, which has transformed itself from a generic drugmaker in South Africa to a global supplier of anaesthetics and other pharmaceuticals, sees headline earnings per share up by 43-48 percent to as much as 1,315.7 cents, from 889 cents last year.
“The significant increase in headline earnings per share is attributable to the devaluation of Aspen’s Venezuelan business in the prior year,” the company said, without giving more detail.
Aspen acquired the marketing rights to a portfolio of anaesthetics from AstraZeneca and GlaxoSmithKline over the past 12 months to make it the largest anaesthetics seller outside the United States.
Headline earnings per share is the main profit measure in South Africa and strips out certain one-off items.
Shares in Aspen were down 0.5 percent at 290.04 rand, ticking up slightly from its level of 288.69 rand before the announcement. ($1 = 13.0549 rand) (Reporting by TJ Strydom, editing by Louise Heavens)