Curro to build more schools
Johannesburg - Curro Holdings said it’s on track to almost double the schools it runs to 200 by 2020 as South Africa’s largest private-school operator reported a 59 percent surge in first-half headline profit and plans to build nine campuses this year.
The company will spend about R950 million ($72 million) building the schools, Cape Town-based Curro said in a statement on Tuesday. It is investing a further R500 million in expanding existing campuses across the country.
The operator raised R1.07 billion by offering stock to existing shareholders in May.
More parents are seeking alternatives to government schools for their children in South Africa, with the quality of education ranked 120th out of 140 countries in a survey by the World Economic Forum last year. Half of all pupils who start school drop out before completing the 12-year curriculum, state data shows.
The national pass rate at state facilities fell to 70.7 percent in 2015, a second year of declines.
Read also: Curro boosts profits by 67%
Poor school results have constrained growth in the continent’s largest economy, with companies battling to hire skilled workers in a country where more than one in four job seekers is unemployed.
Profit climbed to R81 million in the six months ended June 30 from R51 million a year earlier, Curro said.
Revenue increased 24 percent to R705 million, while earnings per share rose 51 percent to 0.22 c.
The stock rose 1.4 percent to R42.69 Monday, paring the decline this year to 25 percent.Bloomberg