CAPE TOWN – Afrimat shot the lights out in lifting headline earnings a share by 94.3 percent to 181.9 cents in the six months to August 31. Chief executive Andries van Heerden said in a presentation yesterday that these were “the best set of results since we listed 13 years ago.”
Revenue for the group which mines industrial minerals, bulk commodities and construction materials, was up 19.9 percent to R1.7 billion. The strong rise in earnings was mainly due to an improvement across all three business segments, and a particularly good performance from the bulk commodities segment due to a high iron ore price. The group’s operating profit margin increased to 18.5 percent from 14.1 percent.
Van Heerden said the exceptional results were driven by the group’s strategy of diversification, cost reductions and efficiency improvement initiatives. They had never missed a dividend since listing. Afrimat was well diversified, it was high on cash-generating ability and its operations were highly scalable.
Annual compound headline earnings per share growth was about 20 percent to the end of the 2018 financial year, and “we hope to improve on that at year-end,” he said. The product range was diversified in that it included aggregates and concrete-based products as construction materials and limestone, dolomite and silica as industrial minerals as well as iron ore as bulk commodities.
A dedicated business development team was successfully identifying and pursuing opportunities in existing markets and anticipated new high-growth areas in southern Africa, he said.