Company news in brief

Spar exits Poland

Retail group Spar has decided to sell off its loss-making Polish operations after only four years in that country.

"Having evaluated and considered all options, the board believes that it is in the best interests of the group and shareholders to engage in a process to dispose of its interests in Poland," Spar said in a trading update.

The group also said that the problematic rollout of a SAP IT system in KwaZulu-Natal resulted in an estimated loss of turnover of R1.4 billion for the 47 weeks to 25 August.

Valued at around R20 billion on the JSE, Spar also operates in South West England, Ireland and Switzerland.

Southern Africa makes up almost two-thirds of revenue, Ireland almost a quarter, Switzerland a tenth, and Poland less than 2%. Turnover for South West England and Ireland increased by 8.5% for the 47 weeks, while Switzerland declined 3.4%.

SPAR Southern Africa saw its total sales grow by 5.9%.

TOPS at SPAR liquor sales declined by 0.6% as sales normalised after a 43% climb in the prior period as lockdown restrictions eased. Build it saw a decline in turnover of almost 4%, while its pharmaceutical business delivered turnover growth of almost 20%. – Fin24



Capitec slashes lending as bad debt surges

Capitec, South Africa’s largest retail bank by customers, raised its interim dividend by 9% on the back of resilient half-year earnings. Even as bad debts surged, the bank benefited from its non-lending income.

The Stellenbosch-headquartered lender said headline earnings rose 9% to R4.7 billion in the six months to end August, with the lender raising its dividend to R15.30, a payout of R1.77 billion. Active clients increased by 11% year on year.

The tough economy put pressure on its 21.1 million clients’ ability to repay debt.

Gross credit impairment charges on loans and advances jumped 54% to almost R5.1 billion. Total provisions for expected credit losses rose 15% to about R22 billion, the vast majority of this in its retail banking unit.

"If you look at our 9% [earnings] growth in this economy, I think it’s an excellent performance," Capitec CEO Gerrie Fourie said.

“The million-dollar question is the economy. [You’re] definitely seeing strain [among our clients] and that’s why we’ve cut back [on lending]. But we’re starting to see some very strong green shoots – if everything goes according to plan, then we’ll see a much better provisioning cycle in the second half,” – he added. – Fin24



Boost for GSK growth ambitions

GSK has lifted its medium-term growth forecast for its HIV drugs business ViiV, encouraged by strong sales of long-acting injections that aim to replace daily pills for preventing and treating the infection.

The ViiV business, in which Pfizer and Shionogi hold small stakes, is a key element of a push by group CEO Emma Walmsley to improve investor confidence in the strength of GSK's drug development pipeline, which has lagged rivals.

Strong sales of medicines for HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, were one of the drivers behind the company's improved guidance for 2023 earnings, issued in July, alongside continued growth in demand for GSK's shingles vaccine.

The HIV business, the focus of a GSK's capital markets day on Thursday, is now targeting annual rates of sales growth of between 6% and 8%, to reach between 6 billion pounds and 7 billion pounds in 2026, up from "mid-single-digit" percentage growth seen previously.

GSK said its Apretude injection to prevent the viral infection, an alternative to daily pills, continues to gain acceptance among the targeted at-risk population.

A different version of the drug, established brand Cabenuva, has been in use for longer as an anti-HIV treatment.

In the prevention setting, known as pre-exposure prophylaxis, GSK's Apretude competes with Gilead's daily pill, Truvada, and a cheaper generic version sold by Teva as Atripla. – Fin24/Reuters

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Allgemeine Zeitung 2024-05-30

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Nam 2.22 SAME | Oryx Properties Ltd 12.1 UP 1.70% | Paratus Namibia Holdings 11.99 SAME | SBN Holdings 8.45 SAME | Trustco Group Holdings Ltd 0.48 SAME | B2Gold Corporation 47.34 DOWN 1.50% | Local Index closed 677.62 UP 0.12% | Overall Index closed 1534.6 DOWN 0.05% | Osino Resources Corp 19.47 DOWN 2.41% | Commodities: Gold US$ 2 342.75/OZ UP +0.18% | Copper US$ 4.63/lb DOWN -0.0239 | Zinc US$ 3 080.30/T DOWN -0.21% | Brent Crude Oil US$ 82.38/BBP DOWN -0.0161 | Platinum US$ 1 026.01/OZ DOWN -0.0116 Sport results: Weather: Katima Mulilo: 11° | 32° Rundu: 10° | 31° Eenhana: 11° | 31° Oshakati: 11° | 29° Ruacana: 13° | 29° Tsumeb: 13° | 28° Otjiwarongo: 10° | 26° Omaruru: 10° | 27° Windhoek: 8° | 23° Gobabis: 10° | 27° Henties Bay: 13° | 17° Wind speed: 21km/h, Wind direction: S, Low tide: 02:35, High tide: 08:47, Low Tide: 14:47, High tide: 21:27 Swakopmund: 13° | 15° Wind speed: 27km/h, Wind direction: S, Low tide: 02:33, High tide: 08:45, Low Tide: 14:45, High tide: 21:25 Walvis Bay: 12° | 18° Wind speed: 27km/h, Wind direction: S, Low tide: 02:33, High tide: 08:44, Low Tide: 14:45, High tide: 21:24 Rehoboth: 10° | 24° Mariental: 10° | 26° Keetmanshoop: 9° | 22° Aranos: 9° | 27° Lüderitz: 10° | 19° Ariamsvlei: 8° | 18° Oranjemund: 10° | 16° Luanda: 22° | 26° Gaborone: 11° | 26° Lubumbashi: 11° | 29° Mbabane: 13° | 24° Maseru: 5° | 20° Antananarivo: 12° | 21° Lilongwe: 13° | 26° Maputo: 17° | 28° Windhoek: 8° | 23° Cape Town: 12° | 15° Durban: 16° | 22° Johannesburg: 13° | 20° Dar es Salaam: 22° | 32° Lusaka: 15° | 29° Harare: 13° | 25° Economic Indicators: Currency: GBP to NAD 23.74 | EUR to NAD 20.23 | CNY to NAD 2.58 | USD to NAD 18.69 | DZD to NAD 0.14 | AOA to NAD 0.02 | BWP to NAD 1.32 | EGP to NAD 0.38 | KES to NAD 0.14 | NGN to NAD 0.01 | ZMW to NAD 0.67 | ZWL to NAD 0.04 | BRL to NAD 3.54 | RUB to NAD 0.21 | INR to NAD 0.22 | USD to DZD 134.17 | USD to AOA 852.22 | USD to BWP 13.64 | USD to EGP 47.2 | USD to KES 129.73 | USD to NGN 1320 | USD to ZAR 18.69 | USD to ZMW 27 | USD to ZWL 321 | Stock Exchange: JSE All Share Index 77161.71 Down -1.8% | Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX) Overall Index 1674.92 Down -2.89% | Casablanca Stock Exchange (CSE) MASI 13313.64 Down -0.25% | Egyptian Exchange (EGX) 30 Index 26922.76 Down -0.62% | Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) DCI Same 0 | NSX: MTC 7.75 SAME | Anirep 8.99 SAME | Capricorn Investment group 17.34 SAME | FirstRand Namibia Ltd 49 DOWN 0.50% | Letshego Holdings (Namibia) Ltd 4.1 UP 2.50% | Namibia Asset Management Ltd 0.7 SAME | Namibia Breweries Ltd 31.49 UP 0.03% | Nictus Holdings - Nam 2.22 SAME | Oryx Properties Ltd 12.1 UP 1.70% | Paratus Namibia Holdings 11.99 SAME | SBN Holdings 8.45 SAME | Trustco Group Holdings Ltd 0.48 SAME | B2Gold Corporation 47.34 DOWN 1.50% | Local Index closed 677.62 UP 0.12% | Overall Index closed 1534.6 DOWN 0.05% | Osino Resources Corp 19.47 DOWN 2.41% | Commodities: Gold US$ 2 342.75/OZ UP +0.18% | Copper US$ 4.63/lb DOWN -0.0239 | Zinc US$ 3 080.30/T DOWN -0.21% | Brent Crude Oil US$ 82.38/BBP DOWN -0.0161 | Platinum US$ 1 026.01/OZ DOWN -0.0116