March 2, 2020 / 7:47 AM / a month ago

South Africa's Bidvest half-year normalised earnings dip on accounting changes

JOHANNESBURG, March 2 (Reuters) - South Africa’s Bidvest reported a 3.9% fall in half-year normalised earnings on Monday, hurt by the adoption of new international accounting standards known as IFRS 16, although its trading profit and revenue rose.

Bidvest, whose business spans freight, automotive, aviation services and office and print, said normalised headline earnings per share (HEPS) for the six-months ended Dec. 31 came in at 610.9 cents compared with 635.7 cents in 2018.

Excluding IFRS 16 accounting, normalised HEPS inched up 0.1%.

Trading profit increased 19.8% to 4.0 billion rand ($257.24 million), while revenue grew 9.2% enhanced by the consolidation of drugmaker Adcock Ingram.

Bidvest increased its stake in Adcock to 52.3%, resulting in it being consolidated into its Branded Products division from August 1. However, the consolidation was neutral on headline earnings.

“During the six months to December 2019, Bidvest’s domestic operations held their own in a tough trading environment characterised by low business confidence and constrained consumer demand culminating in lower volumes,” the firm said, adding that offshore service businesses performed well.

Services businesses, comprising the Services, Freight and Financial Services divisions, grew trading profit by 6.5%. ($1 = 15.5494 rand) (Reporting by Nqobile Dludla; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

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