Mediclinic International said on Thursday that it would continue to navigate the Covid-19 pandemic despite a slow recovery in its southern African operations File image: Twitter/Mediclinic SA
Mediclinic International said on Thursday that it would continue to navigate the Covid-19 pandemic despite a slow recovery in its southern African operations File image: Twitter/Mediclinic SA

Mediclinic's operational agility key to robust performance delivery

By Sandile Mchunu Time of article published Nov 13, 2020

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DURBAN – Listed private hospital group Mediclinic International said on Thursday that it would continue to navigate the Covid-19 pandemic despite a slow recovery in its southern African operations while Switzerland and United Arab Emirates (UAE) had rebounded since May.

Chief executive Dr Ronnie van der Merwe said Mediclinic had delivered a robust operating performance during the six months to September, with the group’s operational agility being a key contributor.

“We saw trading rebound from May, particularly in Switzerland and the UAE, as the initial peak of the pandemic passed. In southern Africa, the recovery has been more gradual due to the timing of the initial peak and the larger volumes of Covid-19 patients Mediclinic has treated,” Van der Merwe said.

However, revenue declined 7 percent to £1.41 billion (R29.16bn) and the group said this was significantly impacted by April due to the sudden onset of Covid-19 restrictions.

It said adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) tumbled 32 percent to £171 million and adjusted operating profit plummeted 54 percent to £66m while adjusted earnings per share declined 77 percent to 2.3 pence a share. The group’s April revenue was down by 33 percent and adjusted earnings with interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation fell by around £60m compared with the same month last year.

Mediclinic said its dividend payment would remain suspended as part of its broad response to maintaining its liquidity position.

Van der Merwe said the pandemic had already taught them a lot about their business, their ability to respond in a crisis and the strong demand for their broad range of healthcare services.

“Furthermore, it has allowed us to accelerate certain elements of our group strategy, such as digital transformation, that give us opportunities for additional expansion across the continuum of care and therefore driving long-term performance,” he said.

Mediclinic’s 29.9 percent investment in Spire reported a loss after tax of £233m for the six months to end June, which included a goodwill impairment charge of £200m.

The group’s Swiss operation, Hirslanden, reported a 2 percent decline in revenue while its adjusted Ebitda was down by 17 percent.

In the Mediclinic Middle East, revenue increased 9 percent and adjusted Ebitda inched up 9 percent. Its southern Africa operations, which include South Africa and Namibia, revenue declined by 32 percent while adjusted Ebitda fell by 72 percent.

Mediclinic shares gained 0.45 percent on the JSE on Thursday to close at R68.76.

BUSINESS REPORT

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