insights
>
News Archive More

In the news archive

17 December 2019

RMB Holdings’ unbundling met positively – Moneyweb

The announcement by RMB Holdings (RMH) that it intends unbundling its 34.1% stake in FirstRand has been largely welcomed by local asset managers. The holding company notified the market on Tuesday that it intends distributing this stake to shareholders at some point next year. Patrick Cairns reports with commentary by Meyrick Barker, investment analyst for Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

17 December 2019

Tributes for a pioneer – Moneyweb

Of all the words that could be used to describe Allan Gray, the founder of the firm that carries his name, perhaps the most apt is ‘enigmatic’. “He would sometimes remind me of some earnings numbers of valuation metrics I quoted in our discussions from a few years before – in many cases after I had forgotten them already!” Article by Patrick Cairns with insights from Abdul David’s, head of research for Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

17 December 2019

All eyes on Kagiso Asset Management – Business Live

Kagiso Asset Management must surely now be the go-to BEE asset manager for equity and balanced portfolios – Stephen Cranston reports.
view article

12 November 2019

What are sharia-compliant investments and how should I save for a rainy day – Business Day

Requirements are underpinned by Islam’s prohibition on charging interest and the avoidance of companies that are deemed to cause social harm, for example gambling, alcohol and weapons manufacturing. Money reporter comments with input from Abdulazeez Davids, portfolio manager at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

12 November 2019

Delta sees good traction with state tenants lease renewals – Business Day

Investors in South Africa probably feel that they already have plenty to worry about. Low market returns, a struggling economy and ongoing political uncertainty make this a tricky environment. Patrick Cairns reports following talk by Gavin Wood (chief investment officer at Kagiso Asset Management) presented at ‘Meet the Managers’, Cape Town.
view article

12 November 2019

Bruised – but ignore the noise – Financial Mail

Investors in South Africa probably feel that they already have plenty to worry about. Low market returns, a struggling economy and ongoing political uncertainty make this a tricky environment. Patrick Cairns reports following talk by Gavin Wood (chief investment officer at Kagiso Asset Management) presented at ‘Meet the Managers’, Cape Town.
view article

12 November 2019

Six trends investors should watch – Moneyweb

Investors in South Africa probably feel that they already have plenty to worry about. Low market returns, a struggling economy and ongoing political uncertainty make this a tricky environment. Patrick Cairns reports following talk by Gavin Wood (chief investment officer at Kagiso Asset Management) presented at ‘Meet the Managers’, Cape Town.
view article

12 November 2019

Kagiso Stable Fund a good option for risk-averse investors – Sowetan Live

The mining company, whose primary source of revenue is a 20.5% stake in a chrome joint venture with globally diversified miner and commodity trader Glencore, reported profit of R165m for the six months to end-June, compared with a profit of R425m the year before. Article by Allan Seccombe with comment from Mandi Dungwa – portfolio manager at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

12 November 2019

Merafe withholds dividend after profit plunges on weak chrome prices – Business Day

The mining company, whose primary source of revenue is a 20.5% stake in a chrome joint venture with globally diversified miner and commodity trader Glencore, reported profit of R165m for the six months to end-June, compared with a profit of R425m the year before. Article by Allan Seccombe with comment from Mandi Dungwa – portfolio manager at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

12 November 2019

Declining economy catches Mpact flat-footed – Business Day

The decline in economic growth in SA and poor export conditions have left Mpact, the largest paper and plastics packaging and recycling business in southern Africa, with excess stock in the six months to end-June. Article by Siseko Njobeni with commentary by Dirk van Vlaanderen – associate portfolio manager at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

12 November 2019

Omnia prices R2bn rights issue – Moneyweb

Omnia to use the proceeds to reduce its debt. The firm said it had also agreed an underwriting deal with investors Allan Gray, Coronation Asset Management, Foord Asset Management, Kagiso Asset Management, Old Mutual Investment Group and Prudential. Article by Nqobile Dludla.
view article

12 November 2019

Sasol: investors dump portfolio stalwart – Financial Mail

Sasol’s costly Lake Charles project has battered its shares to 10-year lows, but a rights offer is not on the cards – yet. Article by Lisa Steyn with commentary by Abdul Davids,head of research at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

12 November 2019

Strong support for Omnia rights issue – inceConnect

The chemicals, fertiliser and explosives group says its R2 billion capital raise was fully subscribed.

The vast majority of Omnia’s shareholders have taken up their rights in a deeply discounted capital raise aimed at recapitalising the group. Article by Stephen Gunnion.
view article

12 November 2019

Falling rentals bite SA Corporate’s dividend – Business Day

SA Corporate Real Estate, which has recently rebuffed takeover offers from Dipula Income Fund and Emira Property Fund, expects distributions to fall as much as 4% in its financial year as it battles with falling rental rates due to SA’s tepid economic conditions. Article by Karl Gernetzky with comment from Rahgib Davids – investment analyst at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

12 November 2019

Sasol’s coal sale mystery – Financial Mail

Sasol’s silence on the possible sale of its local coal assets has stoked speculation that its balance sheet is in worse shape than feared. Article by Lisa Steyn with insights by Abdul David’s, head of research for Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

12 November 2019

Lower prices and soft demand hit Mondi – Business Day

Paper and packaging group’s earnings dive 18% in the three months to end-September. The lower average prices and reduced demand for its products that Mondi experienced in the three months to end-September are likely to spill into the fourth quarter. Article by Karl Gernetzky and Siseko Njobeni with commentary by Dirk van Vlaanderen, associate portfolio manager at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

12 November 2019

Hunt for palladium riches sends SA miners abroad – Moneyweb

The volatility in SA has miners seeking to balance exposure. Southern Africa is home to the world’s richest platinum deposits, but when Impala Platinum pondered how to invest its windfall profits, it chose North America instead. Article by Felix Njini (Bloomberg) with commentary by Mandi Dungwa, portfolio manager at Kagiso Asset Management.

view article

12 November 2019

Conditional investing calls for a creative approach – Moneyweb

Investors should expect a different return profile from local Shari’ah funds. There are currently 1 607 unit trusts and exchange-traded funds registered in South Africa. According to analysis by Glacier, just 24 of those are Shari’ah compliant. Article by Patrick Cairns with commentary by Jihad Jhaveri, head of process at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

17 May 2019

Fund managers open up about the ‘landmines’ of 2018 – Moneyweb

In an environment where stock market returns have been disappointing, avoiding companies that have suffered a significant share price decline has been even more important than usual. Ingé Lamprecht comments.

17 May 2019

The big opportunity in small stocks – Money Marketing

We believe that the South African market is particularly materially mispricing smaller companies at the moment and we identify some of the potential reasons for this below. If we are correct, this presents the clients of skilled, contrarian, medium-sized asset managers with an unusually attractive (perhaps temporary) opportunity for very high, market-beating returns from here on. By Gavin Wood, CIO, Kagiso Asset Management

26 April 2019

The big opportunity in small stocks – Money Marketing

We believe that the South African market is particularly materially mispricing smaller companies at the moment and we identify some of the potential reasons for this below. If we are correct, this presents the clients of skilled, contrarian, medium-sized asset managers with an unusually attractive (perhaps temporary) opportunity for very high, market-beating returns from here on. By Gavin Wood, CIO, Kagiso Asset Management
view article

26 April 2019

Fund managers open up about the ‘landmines’ of 2018 – Moneyweb

In an environment where stock market returns have been disappointing, avoiding companies that have suffered a significant share price decline has been even more important than usual. Ingé Lamprecht comments.
view article

26 April 2019

Investors have reason to be positive in the long term – Business Live

At the Investment Forums, Gavin Wood, chief investment officer at Kagiso Asset Management, said Kagiso is finding exciting value in mid-cap shares with a market capitalisation of less than R15bn. Laura du Preez comments.
view article

8 February 2019

SA Manager of the Year: Allan Gray sets new record – Saturday Star – Personal Finance

The Raging Bull Awards, hosted each year by Personal Finance, ProfileData and PlexCrown, and held this year in association with Vunani Limited, recognises outstanding performance by unit trust fund managers.
view article

8 February 2019

Raging Bull Award for black excellence goes to Kagiso – Personal Finance

Kagiso Asset Management’s risk-adjusted investment performance over the past five years across the funds and asset classes where they compete were exemplary. Ryk de Klerk comments.

8 February 2019

Why choosing a top-performing unit trust may be dangerous – Business Insider

Investing in a top-performing unit trust can be a treacherous strategy – as is dumping the biggest loser. Johann Biermann comments.
view article

18 October 2018

Pick n Pay back in the cash – Business Day

The company will fully settle its long-term debts at the end of October and CEO Richard Brasher has no immediate plans to take on more. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

18 October 2018

Clover logs first loss in a decade – Business Live

CEO hails ‘exceptional improvement’ in performance despite write-off of loan facility to unbundled subsidiary Dairy Farmers of SA. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

18 October 2018

Storm clouds gathering for SA consumers – Fin24

Storm clouds are gathering and are about to burst for consumers, economists warned, after poor GDP data released this week confirmed that South Africa was in a technical recession. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

3 October 2018

Redefining online retail – Finweek

Through its strategic partnerships, world-class logistics and continuous innovation, JD.com has rapidly grown into one of the world’s largest retailers, writes Sarah le Roux.
view article

3 October 2018

BAT still breathing easily – Financial Mail

Though it is depends on product that carries health warnings, BAT appears to be a safe investment for a while yet. Dirk van Vlaanderen  comments.
view article

3 October 2018

BAT still upbeat on alternative smoking gadgets – Business Day

Cigarette giant British American Tobacco (BAT) believes revenue from its new-generation products (NGPs) will still top £1bn (R17.4 billion) in revenue in the year to end-December 2018 despite a sales growth slowdown. Dirk van Vlaanderen  comments.
view article

3 October 2018

Anglo American launches $3.5 billion Quellaveco copper mine – Business Day

Anglo American has launched a $5.3bn copper project in Peru and is drawing on its experiences at the troubled Minas Rio iron ore mine in Brazil to avoid repeating costly mistakes. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

3 October 2018

AECI seeks bigger Africa presence – Business Day

AECI reported that its revenues grew by 24% to R10.5 billion in the six months ended June, while headline earnings rose 19% to R483 million. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

3 October 2018

Why S&P is upbeat on PPC – Moneyweb

The cement maker’s improved liquidity position and rest of Africa earning potential impresses the ratings agency. Meyrick Barker comments.
view article

16 July 2018

Congolese factory adds to PPC's burden – Business Day

PPC’s joint venture factory in the Democratic Republic of Congo has been a big drag on group results for the year ended March 2018, making up nearly half the company’s losses. Meyrick Barker comments.

view article

16 July 2018

Basil Read forced into business rescue – Business Day

Basil Read, one of seven major construction and engineering groups that has agreed with the government to speed transformation by selling assets or mentoring black contractors, has been placed in business rescue, amid a crunch in cash-flows. Meyrick Barker comments.

view article

16 July 2018

Nampak builds base in preparation for higher African growth – Business Day

By not declaring a dividend in the six months to March 2018, Nampak is hedging its bets amid improving business confidence and higher economic growth forecasts — both for SA and the continent. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.

view article

24 April 2018

Naked Insurance strips out underwriting profit – Business Day

Naked Insurance, a Hollard-backed start-up, has become SA’s first operative insurer to relinquish underwriting profits through a business model that co-founder Alex Thomson says solves the “conflict of interest” inherent in insurance firms. Justin Floor comments.

view article

24 April 2018

A bright light at Eskom – Financial Mail

There is a least one pocket of excellence left in the Eskom group and that is the Eskom Pension & Provident Fund. Abdul Davids comments.

view article

24 April 2018

BAT still glowing for investors – Business Day

Cigarette group has produced the goods over the years but there may be bumps ahead, writes Marc Hasenfuss. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.

view article

23 April 2018

Munro expects big things from Liberty – Business Day

Liberty CE David Munro launched straight into a turnaround-strategy speech at Friday’s results, assuring investors the insurer had “all the ingredients for success” as it reported its second consecutive double-digit drop in full-year earnings. Justin Floor comments.

view article

23 April 2018

Not on fire, but still smoking – Business Day

From a local perspective one might argue that the strong(er) rand environment is muting market enthusiasm for British American Tobacco. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.

view article

23 April 2018

AECI to build on solid performance – Business Day

AECI has mainly shrugged off drought and SA’s disastrous mining impasse to deliver a “more than pleasing” result for the year ended December 2017. Aslam Davids comments.
view article

23 April 2018

Dividend fails to light up BAT – Business Day

Cigarette giant British American Tobacco (BAT) failed to ignite market sentiment despite dividends for the year to end-December increasing 15% to £1.95 a share and a blazing outlook for the group’s new products for smokers. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

23 April 2018

Market approves of Massmart results – Business Day

Retail and wholesale group Massmart’s share price surged almost 9% after the group delivered a surprisingly satisfactory set of annual financial results despite battling weak consumer confidence. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

23 April 2018

Adcock considers expansion to mitigate risks – Business Day

Pharmaceutical company Adcock Ingram is considering exports to the Asia-Pacific and South America as it looks to build its international business. Aslam Davids comments.
view article

23 April 2018

Miners' mixed blessing – Financial Mail

Gold miners have mixed feelings about the presidency of Cyril Ramaphosa. It could usher in a more investor-friendly mining regime, but at the same time, hopes that SA will be better managed have caused the rand to strengthen. Mandi Dungwa comments.
view article

23 April 2018

Imperial's unbundling will depend on results – Business Day

Imperial Holdings posted “solid” results for the six months ended December 2017, as talk of unbundling its Motus integrated motor vehicle group from its logistics arm came into focus. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

23 April 2018

Discovery offer aid in public health – Business Day

For the six months to December, normalised operating profit rose 19% to R4bn on strong growth from established and new businesses. Discovery’s emerging businesses, Discovery Insure, Vitality Group and Ping An Health, swung from a R130m loss in the previous comparable period to a R66m profit. It is the first time that all three posted profit. Justin Floor comments.
view article

23 April 2018

Time to 'look at' Sasol US bet – Business Day

Sasol seemed on track for a strong 2018 financial year,  after the petrochemicals group said first-half earnings could rise 17%. The company said headline earnings per share for the six months to December were expected to be 12%-17% higher than the previous year’s. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

11 December 2017

A new game plan for Sasol – Business Day

Sasol’s decision to invest no more money in either new gas-to-liquids (GTL) plants or plant expansions closes the door on several mega-projects that were being studied in Mozambique, Canada and the US. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

11 December 2017

How downgrades affect everyday South Africans – Fin24

Downgrades of the country’s debt by ratings agencies directly affect the finances of everyday South Africans. While Moody’s did not downgrade SA’s debt in November, it did place the country on review to be downgraded after the 2018 budget. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

11 December 2017

Rest of Africa strengthens PPC earnings – ENCA

PPC nearly tripled attributable net profit in the six months to September, to R294-million from R102m in the same period in 2016. A “strong performance” from its assets in the rest of Africa boosted its regional earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (ebitda) by 25 percent as group ebitda grew 4 percent to R1.2-billion. Meyrick Barker comments.
view article

11 December 2017

Energy giant Sasol to balance growth and returns – Business Day

Global oil and gas group Sasol will no longer invest in mega-projects on its own as it did in the past as it targets a greater balance between growth and shareholder returns in future, executives say. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

11 December 2017

Tsogo awaits Cape Town clarity on casino licences – Business Day

Gaming and leisure group Tsogo Sun, which endured a tough interim period to end-September with discretionary spending tight, is hoping for clarity on a second Cape Town casino before the end of 2017. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

11 December 2017

SA Taxi beats big four banks on loans – Business Day

Transaction Capital’s SA Taxi, which finances more than 10% of SA’s minibus taxis, continues to defy the ailing economy, posting double-digit loan growth over the past year, as demand for taxi finance remains robust among entrepreneurs who do not qualify for bank finance. Meyrick Barker comments.
view article

11 December 2017

Foreign boost for Life Healthcare – Business Day

Life Healthcare’s enlarged international business accounted for nearly a quarter of group revenue in the year to end-September 2017, from just 7% previously. The private-hospital operator bought 94% of UK-based Alliance Medical Group in November 2016 and increased its shareholding in India’s Max Healthcare Institute in August 2017 to 49.7%. These deals helped the group to grow revenue by 27% to R20.8bn in its 2017 financial year. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

11 December 2017

Mr Price shares leap after strong interim results – Business Day

Mr Price’s share price rose as much as 5.3% after the clothing retailer delivered a 23.6% jump in interim diluted headline earnings per share to 434.1c. Total revenue rose 6.7% to R9.8bn for the 20 weeks to September 2017. The group declared an interim dividend of 279c a share, up 22.3%. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

11 December 2017

Tongaat Hulett gets boost from sugar – Business Day

Tongaat Hulett pushed up operating profit and headline earnings for the six months to September 2017 as revenue fell 4.5% during the period. Headline earnings of R661m were 4.8% better than the R631m reported in the six months to September 2016. Meanwhile, operating cash flow before working capital came to R2.447bn, rising from R2.317bn in the same period previously. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

11 December 2017

Gigaba's maiden budget can spark another downgrade – Fin24

Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba’s mini budget definitely has the potential to lead to a ratings downgrade. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

23 October 2017

Steinhoff's Africa listing makes sense – Moneyweb

Freshly unbundled from Steinhoff, JSE-listed Star is a sizeable company with 4808 stores across sub Saharan Africa, revenues over six months of R29.2 billion and earnings of R3 billion. By way of comparison, South Africa’s biggest retailer, Shoprite turned over R71.3 billion and earned R3.7 billion before interest and tax in its last six month period. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on the new listing.
view article

23 October 2017

Kagiso Asset Management nominated as Equities Manager of the Year – RISKAFRICA Magazine

The Batseta Council of Retirement Funds for South Africa (Batseta) has announced the shortlist for the eighth Imbasa Yegolide Service Excellence Awards which recognise service providers who have given outstanding services to retirement funds in South Africa.
view article

23 October 2017

Clover battles rising costs in 'new reality' – Business Day

Prolonged drought, a subsequent wetter and cooler summer, and rand volatility resulted in above-inflation input costs and subdued volume growth amid poor consumer spending. Clover CEO Johann Vorster mentions aggressive competitor pricing and market positioning in the fight to optimally sustain business in a constrained “new reality”. Food producers now cannot just pass costs on to consumers. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

4 September 2017

Fund reviews: analysis of lesser-known funds – Financial Mail

The high-equity unit trust sector is now the bedrock of the unit trust industry. With more than 200 funds in the sector, Stephen Cranston reviews the top performing lesser-known funds available in South Africa. Gavin Wood comments.
view article

30 August 2017

Restructure gives Adcock profit a boost – Business Day

Pharmaceutical group Adcock Ingram has managed to turn its rest of Africa operations profitable, contributing to a tripling of after-tax profit in the year to end-June. The group grew overall revenue by 7% to R5.96 billion and after-tax profit was up 213% to R561 million in the year to end-June. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

25 August 2017

Bidcorp off to a blistering start – Business Day

Bidcorp’s maiden full-year results show the company got off to a blistering start as a JSE-listed entity. The company, which was spun out of Bidvest in May 2016, reported a near double-digit rise in earnings despite difficult trading conditions in some key operations.  Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

25 August 2017

Massmart sticks to expansion strategy – Business Day

Massmart says it has not given up on Africa and will continue to invest in its business on the continent. CEO Guy Hayward said that despite the challenges faced by most African economies, there were signs the tide could yet change for the better. In the period under review, Massmart’s total sales were R42.5 billion, an increase of 0.5% compared with the year-earlier period. Comparable store sales declined 1.6% with product inflation of 3.2%.  Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

17 August 2017

Battle of the PGM belt – Financial Mail

Platinum mining companies are having to take painful decisions to make operations resilient in the face of low prices, regulatory uncertainty, labour and community protests and an unclear demand outlook.  Abdul Davids comments.
view article

4 August 2017

Hulamin sets example for ailing steel industry – Business Day

As SA’s steel industry appears to be going into terminal decline, the aluminium market has been looking up. The pride of South African aluminium production, Hulamin, has just reported strong interim results to June 2017, despite a stronger rand. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

4 August 2017

Future looks bright for Mondi – Business Day

Higher prices for Mondi’s products underpin a positive outlook for the international packaging, paper and pulp manufacturer after it reported a robust performance in the first half of 2017. Revenue rose 8% to €3.6 billion in the six months from the same period in 2016. But underlying operating profit of €497 million came off €32 million. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

24 July 2017

Still no light for Dawn – Financial Mail

In its annual results to March 2016, Dawn posted a net loss of R758 million. It has now posted an attributable loss of R637 million in the year to March 2017. Meyrick Barker comments.
view article

24 July 2017

Trading conditions squeeze Woolworths – Business Day

Investors are lowering their expectations for Woolworths as the outlook for the local retail sector deteriorates. The company reported that growth in the second half of its financial year had been affected by “increasingly difficult trading conditions in both SA and Australasia”. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

20 June 2017

Datatec bounces on sale of Westcon – Business Day

Datatec announced the sale of its Westcon Americas business in a shares-and-cash deal worth about R10.2 billion — or 85% of its market cap. US Fortune 500 IT company, Synnex, will pay a maximum of US$800 million, of which US$500 million will be settled in Synnex shares, giving Datatec a 10.25% share. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

20 June 2017

Clothing retailers suffering in tough economy – Business Day

Mr Price Group reported a drop in headline earnings for the first time in 16 years. In the year to April 1 2017, Mr Price reported a fall of 10.4% in diluted headline earnings per share to 887.9c. Retail sales eased 0.5%, while comparable store sales fell 3.6% to R18.6 billion. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

20 June 2017

Africa makes winning case for Steinhoff – Business Day

Steinhoff’s African and East European assets outperformed the group’s operations elsewhere. In the six months to March 2017, the African business increased its total revenue 25% to €522 million. On a like-for-like basis, African revenue increased 4%, a good showing when compared with other domestically listed retailers. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

1 June 2017

Clover drops after earnings warning – Business Day

Investors skimmed 7% off Clover’s share price in intraday trade on 29 May after the dairy products group said that it expected to report a drop of as much as 65% in full-year headline earnings. Clover said that the drought and currency fluctuations had resulted in above-inflation input costs, which it had been unable to recover through price increases. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

1 June 2017

Regulatory hurdles put Mediclinic on watch- Moneyweb

Middle East regulatory issues led to a disappointing performance in private healthcare group Mediclinic’s annual results. The Middle East saw revenue grow 72% to $846.4 million for the year ended March 31. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

1 June 2017

Imperial looking to expand an empire – Financial Mail

Logistics and vehicle group Imperial Holdings is driving hard towards doubling profit from its rest-of-Africa operations. It is seeking to rely less on a shaky SA trading environment, where 59% of group revenue and 64% of operating profit were generated in the interim period to December 2016. Meyrick Barker comments.
view article

1 June 2017

Astral Foods sees pain from new brine regulations – Moneyweb

South Africa’s largest poultry producer, Astral Foods, saw poultry sales volumes decline by 10.5% for the six months to March 31. Its group operating profit declined by 50.6% to R212 million on the back of a flat 0.5% revenue growth to R5.7 billion. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

1 June 2017

Umongo fills gap in Omnia's range – Business Day

Omnia is buying 90% of Umongo Petroleum for R780m, adding new product lines and geographies to expand the diversified chemicals group. The deal, which still has to be given the green light by SA’s competition authorities, will add 6% to Omnia’s overall annual turnover of about R16 billion. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

1 June 2017

Market punishes Pioneer Foods – Business Day

In the six months to end March 2017, Pioneer Foods reported a 47% drop in first-half adjusted headline earnings to R470m. Adjusted operating profit declined from 12% to 7%. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

15 May 2017

Sasol lowers synfuels sales forecast in update – Business Day

Chemical conglomerate Sasol has revised its synfuel sales forecast for the year to June down to 60-million barrels from 61-million barrels in financial 2016, in a nine-month update to the end of March. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

15 May 2017

A breath of fresh air for Mediclinic – Moneyweb

Mediclinic’s share price has fallen 36% in just over year, with the healthcare group facing regulatory headwinds which has constrained earnings and profits in some of its most lucrative and fastest growing markets. A recent Zurich regulatory ruling has offers positive news for the Swiss market outlook. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

11 May 2017

Below-forecast earnings erode Pick n Pay shares – Business Day

While local food retailers have seen a general decline in their share prices in the past month, Pick n Pay has been the hardest hit. Its share price has retreated just more than 13% in April, with most of the movement sparked by the release of the company’s 2017 annual results. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

28 March 2017

No dividend payout by Sun International – Business Day

Gaming giant Sun International released results which that the group, which has changed its financial year-end to December, finished the six months to end December 2016 with borrowings of R14.5 billion. This was R455 million more than at the end of June 2016. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

28 March 2017

Barclays Africa debt sale misses target – Moneyweb

Barclays Africa Group sold less than half its target in a bond auction as a wall of debt issuance by South African banks and the impending exit of its UK parent, Barclays Plc, damped demand. Gavin Wood comments.
view article

28 March 2017

Emerging market growth lifts Sanlam – Business Day

Insurance group Sanlam outperformed peers in a tough domestic economy, posting double-digit earnings growth in its businesses both inside and outside SA, its 2016 financial results showed.  Justin Floor comments.
view article

28 March 2017

AECI weathers headwinds and drought – Business Day

Chemicals and explosives group AECI saw profits in the year to December 2016 hit by negligible growth in South African manufacturing and drought in the regional agriculture sector. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

24 March 2017

Severe drought bites Clover – Moneyweb

It has been a testing time for Clover Industries, with the dairy products producer attempting to fend off the pain from severe drought conditions and consumers that are battling to afford rising food prices. So tough has the operating environment been for Clover that it increased the price of its dairy products by 10.6% to protect the sustainability of its dairy-reliant business. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

2 March 2017

'Relief rally' boosts Discovery – Business Day

Delivering the Discovery Group’s results for the six months to December 2016, CEO Adrian Gore said the group had more than R1 billion to fund new business growth. Spend on new initiatives fell 36% to R244 million, accounting for 7% of operating profit, which rose 13% to R3.4 billion.
Justin Floor comments.
view article

2 March 2017

Liberty puts on a brave face – Business Day

For the year to December 2016, Liberty’s normalised headline earnings fell 38.8% from the prior period to R2.5 billion, reflecting a 37% drop in operating earnings and a 42% decline in earnings from the shareholder investment portfolio. Justin Floor comments.
view article

2 March 2017

AngloGold lifts force majeure on Obuasi mines – Moneyweb

AngloGold Ashanti lifted force majeure on its Ghanaian Obuasi mine after the removal of thousands of illegal miners but said it was too early to determine the extent of damage to the loss-making, mothballed operation. The move is significant for AngloGold, which has said it could sell or redevelop the mine. It also cheered investors by saying it would resume dividends after returning to profit in 2016 thanks to a higher spot gold price and weaker currencies. Mandi Dungwa comments.
view article

2 March 2017

Investment drive rewards Mondi – Business Day

Mondi saw another solid performance for the year ended December 2016, pushing underlying operating profit up 3% to €981 million. Cash generated from operations of €1.4 million rose 10%. This reflected the international packaging and paper group’s €800m pipeline of expansionary capital investment. Completed major projects contributed €50m to underlying operating profit in 2016.
Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

2 March 2017

Adcock shares on up and up – Business Day

Adcock Ingram’s result for the six months to end-December revealed that the company became debt-free for the first time since 2011. The share had jumped 3.36% in midday trade as headline earnings per share shot up 49%. Turnover rose 11% to R3 billion as gross profit increased 11% to R1.1bn. The group declared a dividend of 63c per share. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

2 March 2017

Imperial 'on track' with profit – Business Day

Imperial Holdings says it is still on the road to doubling core profit from its rest-of-Africa businesses, but that it is taking longer than expected. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

16 February 2017

Woolworths banks on cosmetics as profits dip – Moneyweb

South African retailer Woolworths Holdings aims to double its market share in beauty products in its home market over the next three years. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

16 February 2017

Amplats works towards dividend – Business Day

Amplats swung out of a deep loss in 2015, when financials were skewed by hefty one-off items, into profit in 2016 as it benefited from positive cash flows from all its mines for the second year running after three years of restructuring, asset sales and containing costs. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

23 January 2017

Clover warns of sluggish festive season trade – Business Day

Clover’s December 2016 trading volumes were markedly lower than for December 2015. Headline earnings per share for the six months ended December 2016 were expected to be between 15.7% and 25.7% lower than the 116.96c recorded in the period a year earlier. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

18 January 2017

Mr Price posts drop in Q3 sales – Moneyweb

Mr Price, which in November posted its first profit drop in 15 years, reported total retail sales of 6.1 billion rand (US$452 million) for the three months to end-December, 0.5% lower than the corresponding period in 2015. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

18 January 2017

Not even Christmas could save SA retailers – Moneyweb

Although the grim trading updates from market darling Woolworths and fashion retailer Truworths were expected, they underscore how troubled SA’s retail market is. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

1 December 2016

One-off costs hurt Omnia – Business Day

Drought, the mining commodities rout, the election of Donald Trump and Brexit have all conspired to keep the world economy volatile in the first half of its financial year, says diversified global chemicals group Omnia. This has led to profit for the six months to September plunging 22.1% to R258m and headline earnings per share diving 24.9%. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

24 November 2016

Tsogo Sun hikes payout – Bdlive

Gaming and hotels group Tsogo Sun, which is controlled by empowerment conglomerate Hosken Consolidated Investments (HCI), hiked its interim dividend 10% to 34c per share despite adjusted headline earnings for the six months to end-September being static at 88c per share. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

17 November 2016

High-spirited Spar has a big year – Business Day

Spar Group has reported a 12% surge in full year operating profit, largely defying the malaise in the local retail sector and the Brexit -inspired dip in Europe’s consumer confidence. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

16 November 2016

Leaner Telkom to pay first interim dividend – Bdlive

Telkom surprised the market with a maiden interim dividend, which sent the share price up 5.33%. The group also revised its dividend policy that will now see it pay 60% of headline earnings as annual dividends following a strong performance. Aslam Dalvi comments. view article

15 November 2016

Huge profit for Tongaat Hulett – Business Day

Tongaat Hulett saw sugar production roar back to life in its interim results for the six months ended September, despite the recent drought across southern Africa. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

14 November 2016

Mediclinic is ailing in Middle East – Moneyweb

Mediclinic International’s global acquisition spree is costing the private hospital group as it is starting to feel the pinch – mainly in the Middle East. Aslam Dalvi comments. view article

14 November 2016

Pan-African outlook pays off for CIG – Bdlive

Consolidated Infrastructure Group (CIG) posted double-digit growth in the year to August, with revenue shooting up 26% to R4.5bn and headline earnings per share jumping 16%. The recent R850m buyout of electricity and smart meter provider Conlog is expected to further diversify revenue in future. Meyrick Barker comments. view article

8 November 2016

Don't bet against the rand – Moneyweb

As the rand hit R13.49 to the US dollar, its strongest point since August and a full 13.5% higher than it was in January, complacent investors would be wise to pay attention. That’s because 73% of the value derived by the top 40 companies on the JSE comes from offshore – up from 43% in 2006.  Gavin Wood comments. view article

25 October 2016

Why BAT needs Reynolds American – Moneyweb

British American Tobacco (BAT) has made an offer to acquire US tobacco giant Reynolds American in a US$47 billion deal that will create the world’s biggest listed tobacco company by turnover and operating profit. The deal will give BAT greater access to the US market and a significant presence in high growth emerging markets. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

5 October 2016

Altron asset sale plan pays off – Business Day

Allied Electronics’ turnaround strategy is yielding positive results, as seen in results for the six months to August, when the group managed to reverse a headline loss per share into earnings of 31c. This comes after it has disposed of non-performing assets and will continue to sell more businesses, including companies within its Powertech division, to focus on the technology and telecommunications sector. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

4 October 2016

Famous Brands buys stake in catering firm – Business Day

Famous Brands has sealed a deal with a Johannesburg-based catering company, By Word of Mouth, in its first foray into this competitive sector. By Word of Mouth offers a portfolio of services ranging from development of designer food and beverage menus to event management. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

19 September 2016

Aspen: going big in Japan – Moneyweb

Aspen Pharmaceuticals is now one of SA’s top 100 exporters, employing more than 2 000 people at its Port Elizabeth and Cape Town manufacturing plants. And while geographical expansion has been a strategy from the get-go, the group has trod warily when it comes to expanding into China and the US. However, its latest AstraZeneca and GSK transactions provide Aspen with a neat entry into the Chinese market. Aslam Dalvi comments. view article

16 September 2016

Clover churns out solid results despite draught – Moneyweb

Clover Industries continues to ride out the cyclical nature of milk, with the company lifting the prices of its dairy products in response to the severe drought conditions and the oversupply of milk. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

16 September 2016

Sasol to splurge on capital projects – Bdlive

Sasol, the international energy and chemicals group, will spend R135bn over the next two years on capital projects in Southern Africa and the US despite weak oil prices. The company’s management is also confident it can maintain its expansion programme, while paying a dividend. Abdul Davids comments. view article

7 September 2016

Discovery sure it can continue on growth path- Business Day

Insurer Discovery’s continued bullish investment into new growth initiatives has been met with caution by analysts, who appear to be adopting a wait-and-see approach about the effect of these investments on profit. Justin Floor comments.
view article

7 September 2016

WBHO upbeat on infrastructure growth – Bdlive

Wilson Bayly Holmes-Ovcon (WBHO) says the group’s building divisions – both in Africa and Australia – have continued to offset lower activity levels in mining and other civil engineering sectors. Victor Seanie comments. view article

7 September 2016

Weak economies test life insurers' health – Business Times

South Africa’s life insurers make for difficult comparisons as they cover a diverse range of target markets, territories and business activities. But in a week when most will be delivering their results, comparisons will be made. For many investors, the only relevant metric will be the dependability of growth and a dividend, something that will become more challenging as economic growth continues to flag. Justin Floor comments.
view article

31 August 2016

Bidvest shifts focus – Moneyweb

After successfully unbundling its food services business and listing it as Bid Corporation (Bidcorp) on the JSE, industrial conglomerate Bidvest Group is gunning for bolt-on acquisitions and further expansion into international markets. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

26 August 2016

Woolies to cut food prices in tight year – Business Day

Upmarket food and clothing retailer Woolworths will focus on bringing its prices down in certain categories after it forecast another hellish year for consumers. While the company targets high-end consumers, even they are feeling the effects of a weaker rand and high interest rates. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

24 August 2016

Sun International: risks and opportunities – Moneyweb

Sun International is two thirds of the way through a gigantic programme of global expansion, corporate renewal and portfolio streamlining. Positive results seem just around the corner, but a plethora of risks facing the business may cause further bumpiness along the road. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

24 August 2016

Metair lifts revenue but Toyota launch hits profit – Bdlive

Metair, the battery and automotive component maker, grew revenue 13.7% to R4 billion for the six months to June, but the costs of supporting a new model launch by dominant customer Toyota halved profits in the period. Simon Anderssen comments. view article

24 August 2016

Standard Bank's mortgage strategy pays off – Business Day

Although it saw a 16% rise in credit impairments for the six months to June, Standard Bank has not burnt its fingers on home loans, unlike rivals that reported results recently. Meyrick Barker comments.
view article

24 August 2016

Mpact: a mixed bag – Financial Mail

Mpact, the diversified JSE-listed packaging maker that was spun out of Mondi five years ago, posted mixed results in the six months to June. This came as a couple of dismal trading updates in past months spooked the market. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

16 August 2016

Massmart slips back despite strong forecast – Bdlive

Massmart’s share price was hit by profit-taking after the retailer released an interim trading statement, in which it said earnings were expected to grow strongly despite a marked slowdown in the local economy. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

16 August 2016

Old Mutual profit takes first dive in five year – Business Day

Old Mutual’s first half profits declined for the first time in five years, burned by significant once off items. Rand weakness relative to the first half of 2015 hurt profits but, even on a constant currency basis, pretax adjusted operating profits fell 9% to £708m for the six months to June. Justin Floor comments.
view article

8 August 2016

Core units lift AECI as profit plunges – Business Day

Chemicals and explosives company AECI has reported a 42 percent decline in operating profit to R571 million for the six months to end June, which was dominated by a constrained environment in South Africa and abroad. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

8 August 2016

Strong operations in Africa lift Shoprite results – Business Day

Shoprite’s stronghold in West Africa helped the domestic retailer report better-than-expected results in July, but the company has yet to successfully branch out in East Africa. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

8 August 2016

There's nothing sleepy about Aspen – Moneyweb

Aspen is a stock investors love or hate. Some argue that it is an overpriced generics manufacturer that has grown through acquisition and has now reached its peak. Others argue that management is a group of shrewd operators who have proven themselves over the years. Victor Seanie comments. view article

8 August 2016

Packaging portfolio helps grow Mondi profit – Business Day

Mondi continued its strong financial performance across all of its key metrics in the six months to June, with underlying operating profit of €529m rising 8% on the same period in 2015. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

8 August 2016

Kumba: The Anglo shakeup – Financialmail.co.za

If Anglo American doesn’t want to keep Kumba Iron Ore, why should any other investors want it? At Kumba’s interim results last week, outgoing CEO Norman Mbazima reiterated the reasons Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani had previously given for selling Kumba, which related to the nature of the assets and the long-term fundamentals for iron ore. Abdul Davids comments. 

view article

8 August 2016

Governments fail to impede BAT growth – Bdlive

British American Tobacco (BAT) delivered a 4.2% rise in group revenue in the first half of its financial year, despite efforts by governments in the jurisdictions it operates in to stomp out smoking as a practice. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

22 July 2016

Barclays Africa hit by bond arrears – Business Day

Barclays Africa, whose Absa bank is SA’s second-largest retail home loan provider, has reported a 77% surge in soured home loans – the first large bank to put a number on rising mortgage arrears as high interest rates make it increasingly difficult for households to afford their loan repayments. Meyrick Barker comments.
view article

11 July 2016

MTN revamp aims to boost client services – Bdlive

MTN SA will spend more than R300 million on a revamp of its 430 stores as part of a turnaround plan for the business, which reported weaker results for the six months to June. The aim is to digitise the stores to enable customers to do self-service, and to respond faster to queries. Aslam Dalvi comments. view article

11 July 2016

JSE plans to shorten settlement of equities – Business Day

The JSE plans to launch a shorter settlement cycle for equities trading on Monday, bringing it in line with other exchanges around the world. Equities orders will take three days to settle after execution on the JSE’s new T+3 system, bringing it in line with the US equities market  Satish Gosai comments.
view article

1 July 2016

Brexit spells trouble for SA banks, economy – Moneyweb

Following the market-spinning Brexit vote, commentators warn that Britain could slip into recession and that London may lose its status as a global financial centre, particularly if the UK loses the easy access to European markets that it has enjoyed for 43 years. As a result, local banks and insurers, particularly those with UK exposure, face challenging times. Justin Floor comments. view article

17 June 2016

Auditor disclaimer and profit dip tank PPC – Business Day Live

Cement maker PPC on Tuesday scrapped its dividend payment for the first time as it posted a sharp drop in profits in the interim period to March. SA’s largest cement manufacturer also made public a disclaimer stating that auditor Deloitte & Touche could not draw a conclusion on its ability to continue as a going concern. Victor Seanie comments.  view article

17 June 2016

Land sweetens pot for Tongaat Hulett – Business Times

In the year to end-March, Tongaat Hulett generated R1.115-billion of profit from the sale of 121 developable hectares of land, an increase from R829-million from a sale of 108ha last year. Against the backdrop of severe drought in KwaZulu-Natal, the company’s sugar operation profit fell to R124-million from R806-million the year before. However, CEO Peter Staude says the most recent financial results do not mean that Tongaat has become a land development company. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

2 June 2016

Diversification pays off for Tongaat – Business Day

Tongaat Hulett turned in record results for its value-added starch and glucose operations and its property development business, as core sugar output withered in severe drought conditions in KwaZulu-Natal and in poor growing conditions in Mozambique and Zimbabwe.  Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

26 May 2016

PPC downgrade warning hits stock – Business Day

PPC, SA’s biggest cement producer, warned on Monday of a credit rating downgrade and said it was in the advanced stages of a capital raising exercise for up to R4 billion. The capital raise would reduce current debt levels and fund existing investment projects. Gross group debt was set to rise to between R10 billion and R12 billion in the next few years.  Victor Seanie comments.
view article

18 May 2016

Bank bid rough for Diamond – Business Times

Former Barclays plc CEO Bob Diamond and his business partners could have a hard time laying their hands on a sought-after stake in Barclays Africa. Jihad Jhaveri comments.
view article

18 May 2016

Illovo stakeholders favour a takeover by the UK's ABF – Business Report

More than half of Illovo Sugar minority shareholders are in favour of a takeover by Associated British Foods (ABF), the world’s biggest sugar producer, in a R5.6 billion deal that is a boost for investor confidence in SA and the continent. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

25 April 2016

AdvTech bullish on growth prospects – Moneyweb

When private education conglomerate AdvTech rejected takeover advances from its rival Curro Holdings last year, then CEO (now retired) Frank Thompson’s parting shot was “it’s now business as usual”. The group has posted market-pleasing results for the full-year 2015 with revenue growth of 40% to R2.7 billion. Simon Anderssen comments  view article

25 April 2016

Metair seeks Russian deal – Business Day

Metair is in talks with a leading battery manufacturer in Russia to help it distribute its automotive parts from Turkey that are barred from entering Moscow due to an ongoing political stand-off between the two nations. The SA manufacturer of vehicle components said it was seeking a 50% stake in the Russian company to halt sliding exports from its Turkish plant, Mutlu Akfi. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

25 April 2016

Anglo American results dismay – Business Report

Global diversified mining group Anglo American tumbled as much as 8.26 percent on the JSE yesterday before recovering following news that production across most commodities had declined in the March quarter, as well as criticism of its chief executive’s salary. Abdul Davids comments. view article

25 April 2016

Bidvest names its new food spin off – Business Day

Bidvest intends calling its new food-service business, which is to be listed at the start of business on May 30, Bidcorp. In a circular posted to share-holders, it said that the name required the approval of at least 75% of shareholders at a general meeting. This would be held in Johannesburg around May 16. The net asset value of Bidcorp, according to the circular, was about R23 billion. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

25 April 2016

Clover: more defensive, less cyclical – Moneyweb

In ten years, Clover has transformed from a sleepy dairy business into a competitive branded business that is more defensive and less cyclical than most investors realise. While investors are still coming to grips with the fact that margins were not severely affected by the drought or last year’s milk surplus, it is about to transform once again. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.

view article

16 March 2016

Menlyn: the best hand for Sun – Business Day

Gaming and hotel group Sun International is likely to abandon its takeover bid for rival Peermont, but executives are hoping a new casino development at Menlyn Maine could significantly strengthen its hand in financial 2017. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article
 

16 March 2016

Sun International: building up a hand – Fin Mail

Sun International’s likely abandoning of the Peermont Global acquisition and the transfer of an existing casino licence to the vibrant Menlyn Maine have lately overshadowed the gaming giant’s efforts to build a niche in Latin America. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

16 March 2016

Anglo in dramatic portfolio shake-up – IOL

Diversified mining giant Anglo American has  announced a dramatic shake-up of its portfolio after envisioning the disposal of $6 billion (R94.76 billion) of non-core assets by the end of the year and the unbundling of Kumba Iron Ore in 2017. Abdul Davids comments  view article

16 February 2016

ARM forks out to keep B-BBEE status – Business Day

Rainbow Minerals (ARM), in which mining entrepreneur Patrice Motsepe is the biggest shareholder, is putting a R1.9 billion bail-out in place to preserve its broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) status as volatile markets have rocked its share price. Over the course of last year ARM’s share price fell from about R119 to R40, although it has since recovered to above R70. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

12 February 2016

Sanlam's results see share fall 6% – BDlive

Sanlam said it had R2.3 billion in discretionary capital to invest in growth initiatives, and had an opportunity to raise more capital if there was a need. CEO Ian Kirk said the insurer had not raised capital for some time and the company had explored some options on how it would raise capital, if needed. Justin Floor comments.  view article

12 February 2016

Anglo Platinum: mixed responses – Financial Mail

Without the burden of one-off restructuring costs and write-downs, Anglo American Platinum’s headline earnings would have increased by about 37% for the past year to December, when compared with 2014. Including the costs of adapting to a weak platinum price, its headline earnings will instead drop by about 90%. The comparison with 2014 looks good only because there was a five-month strike in that year. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

14 January 2016

Nene sacking an ironic fillip for SA's gold sector – Business Day

Jacob Zuma is causing turmoil in financial markets and unwittingly throwing a lifeline to his country’s struggling gold industry. Mr Zuma’s decision to fire respected finance minister Nhlanhla Nene drove the rand to a record low, instantly reducing labour and other costs in the local currency for mining companies, relative to the US dollars they earn by selling gold. A weak rand offers relief to an industry plagued by labour unrest, ageing mines and power shortages. Gavin Wood comments.
view article

14 January 2016

Barclays Africa expansion plans intact – BDlive

Barclays Africa on Tuesday said it would not be deterred from expansion on the rest of the continent despite its parents’ shareholding in the African operation falling to about 20% in two to three years. Jihad Jhaveri comments. view article

31 December 2015

R94 billion bilateral deals crown state visits – Business Report

The signing of 26 agreements worth R94 billion by the Chinese and SA governments on Wednesday present an opportunity for the skewed trade relations and perceptions between the two countries to be addressed. The trade balance favours China as more than 90 percent of SA’s top 10 exports to China are in raw materials, while all of the country’s top 10 imports from China are manufactured products. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

18 November 2015

Astral makes hay while the sun shines – Moneyweb

Investors who bought into Astral Foods on the back of a superb trading update in early November will have made an 11% loss as the share fell from R171.50 at the time, to R152 by the time the company reported its results on Monday. While Astral and peers like Sovereign Foods and RCL Foods have all delivered better results thanks to more benign trading conditions and after a four tough years, the clouds are once again building on the horizon. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

16 November 2015

Daybrook in US a prime catch for Oceana – Business Day

Fishing group Oceana, which has consumer brands giant Tiger Brands and empowerment group Brimstone as anchor shareholders, netted an encouraging first-profit catch from its recent acquisition in the US. Oceana’s year to end-September results released yesterday showed fishmeal and fish oil specialist Daybrook Fisheries chipped in revenues of R574 million and operating profit of R180 million. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

6 October 2015

SA clothes sellers eye fast, local supply as rivals land – Sharenet

South African retailers are waking up to the need to work more closely with a resurgent domestic textile industry to help fend off global fashion giants muscling in on the continent’s most lucrative market. Cheap Chinese clothes imports almost broke the back of local garment makers, but the sector has started to recover after the government invested more than R2 billion (US$149 million) in upgraded production lines and more innovative technology. Abdul Davids comments. view article

2 October 2015

As the wheel turns – Financial Mail

A sign of the intensifying pressure on mining companies is that even some of the biggest and most diversified are having to abandon progressive dividend policies. Still, it’s debatable whether progressive dividend policies, which mean increasing dividends every year, were ever an appropriate pledge for companies operating in such a cyclical industry. Abdul Davids comments.
view article – part one
view article – part two

22 September 2015

Discovery applies for bank licence – Business Day

Using its First National Bank-backed credit card as a springboard, Discovery will launch a ‘full-service’ retail bank as soon as it obtains regulatory approval in a bid to diversify its income streams. The insurer has already put in motion its plan to add a bank to its operations through the acquisition of a nearly 75% interest in DiscoveryCard. “We have applied for a licence. We don’t know when that will be granted,” said Discovery CEO Adrian Gore. Mr Gore said Discovery’s retail bank would be built from a technology perspective. Justin Floor comments.
view article

25 August 2015

Panama casino dims Sun’s results – Business Day

Sun International pulled out all the cost-cutting stops to offset tough trading conditions in its South African market but was tripped up by a poor start at its new casino in Panama and foreign exchange losses in Nigeria. Reporting results for the financial year to end-June, CEO Graeme Stephens said Sun would have reported a 27% increase in headline earnings had the performance not been hampered by events in Panama and Nigeria (Sun’s R44m share of unrealised forex losses on dollar-denominated Nigerian minority shareholder loans). Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

6 August 2015

MTN in patient wait for Iran funds – Business Day

MTN expects it will take until next year to free its $1.1bn profits trapped in Iran following nuclear agreements Iran reached with the US and other countries to lift sanctions. MTN chief financial officer Brett Goschen said there were still a number of processes that would have to be finalised. But the group felt more positive, and if sanctions were lifted now, it would be able to repatriate its money possibly by next year. Aslam Dalvi comments. view article

30 July 2015

Anglo puts a brave face on radical cost cutting – Financial Mail

ANGLO American might have scored public relations points by paying an interim dividend, but was this wise? After all, the figures for the half year to June hardly painted a picture of a robust mining giant with cash to spare: cash flows from operations have fallen, the outlook for commodities remains weak, assets are being sold off to cut debt and jobs are being lost. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

30 July 2015

Trim fat, analysts tell Barclays Africa even as earnings surge – Business Day

Barclays Africa Group still had room to cut costs and manage excess capital better to help it reach its return on equity target of 18%-20% in the next financial year, analysts said on Wednesday following the release of its interim results. Jihad Jhaveri comments.
view article

26 July 2015

Curro to put the screws on Advtech – Sunday Times Business Times

Private schooling group Curro’s bid for its smaller rival, Advtech, may become hostile after the latter’s board rejected the PSG-controlled company’s advances and refused to take the offer to shareholders.
view article

24 July 2015

AdvTech board under fire – Business Report

Kagiso Asset Management, the second biggest shareholder in takeover target AdvTech, is disappointed that the board of the company had decided not to refer Curro’s offer to all shareholders. Simon Anderssen, a Kagiso Asset Management Investment Analyst, yesterday expressed concern at the AdvTech board’s lack of transparency in the withdrawal of the company’s cautionary.
view article

23 July 2015

New twist in Curro bid for Advtech – Business Day

THINGS could get unruly in the JSE’s private school sector where a R6bn takeover proposal may go hostile. On Wednesday PSG-controlled private education group Curro Holdings looked determined to take over smaller rival Advtech by detailing the terms of a premium-priced scrip and partial cash buyout offer at R13 a share. It also inferred the strong support of Advtech’s biggest institutional shareholders. Simon Anderssen comments. view article

23 July 2015

The game is on – Moneyweb

I don’t think so. In a nutshell this was the response from the Curro board following AdvTech’s announcement on Tuesday that it will not refer Curro’s offer to its shareholders for consideration. It summarily withdrew the cautionary relating to discussions between the two companies. Curro responded with a further, more detailed cautionary announcement. Simon Anderssen comments. view article

16 July 2015

Netcare: Both shield and sword – Financial Mail

Private health-care provider Netcare not only has the largest share of the local market but has a significant presence in the UK as well, where it is one of the largest providers to the National Health Service. Under CE Richard Friedland, Netcare has become one of the top health-care groups for deals in SA and abroad. It ranks alongside Mediclinic. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

15 July 2015

Grand Parade eyes Burger King supply chain – Business Day Live

Empowerment investment company Grand Parade Investments has acquired a stake in a burger patties company as a strategic move towards owning the entire Burger King supply chain. The firm’s wholly owned subsidiary, Grand Foods, early in September announced the acquisition of 65% of Excellent Meat Burger Plant for R37 million. Grand Foods was established two years ago to solely produce burger patties for Burger King in South Africa. It holds the master franchise agreement for Burger King in Southern Africa. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments. view article

1 July 2015

Naspers sees e-commerce as the key to future growth – Business Day

Naspers will continue to invest significantly in its internet businesses, especially e-commerce, in countries such as India. Chief operating officer Larry Illg said India was a key market that was yet to mature, but was highly competitive. Online or e-commerce shopping in India was growing faster than average. In India, Naspers offers classifieds services, payment solutions, and online buying sites under brands such as OLX, Flipkart and PayU. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

29 June 2015

One share (Naspers) shines brighter – Financial Mail Top Companies

Naspers has surpassed market expectations and become the first company to break through the R2000/share barrier — thanks to its China-based associate company Tencent. But the share price has reverted to trading under R2000, though it may end the year back at that level. Naspers’ share price is correlated closely with the share movement of Tencent, which accounts for almost all Naspers’ value. Tencent operations include online games and instant chat services. Naspers has over the years transitioned from a media house into Africa’s biggest Internet provider. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

29 June 2015

Africa is certainly not for sissies – Financial Mail

Consumer goods group Tiger Brands’ expansion into the rest of Africa has very much been a case of a “cat on a hot tin roof”. Its experiences in Nigeria and now Kenya have exposed some bad or rather rushed decisions by CEO Peter Matlare and his executives. This has pushed the group into a quandary. While it wants to continue with its march to conquer sub-Saharan Africa, it’s had to become so circumspect that it is unlikely to take major risk in the near future, while it is still trying to fix some of its floundering African operations. The danger is that its rivals, notably Pioneer Foods, is not waiting, setting its sights on the same African markets that Tiger Brands identified a decade ago. Victor Seanie comments.
view article

29 June 2015

Fat margins are a luxury – Financial Mail Investors Monthly

Tiger Brands has not only come under pressure from its offshore operations, its South African business has also been up against a wall in the past couple of years. Since the days of the recession, consumer spending has yet to fully recover, which means growth in the consumer goods industry largely remains subdued. Ongoing job losses and sharp increases in administered prices such as fuel and electricity have stifled spending too. The result has been an increase in competition between branded goods producers such as Tiger Brands and retailers’ private label offerings. Victor Seanie comments.
view article

12 June 2015

Successful diversification in the sugar industry – Finweek

The sugar producing business is cyclical by nature, as illustrated by the impact of a drought on the recent results from Tongaat Hulett and Illovo Sugar, the giants of the local industry. Both companies have worked hard in recent years to diversify their businesses, including into downstream operations such as ethanol and furfural production, electricity co-generation and, in the case of Tongaat, starch operations and property development. Dirk van Vlaanderen gives input into this feature piece.
view article

3 June 2015

Hospitals nervous ahead of probe – Citizen

Netcare, Life Healthcare (LHC) and Mediclinic are expected to take some heat when the delayed hearings of the Competition Commissions’ inquiry into the private health care market start. The three listed hospital groups dominate the private hospital market and, although none has a market share of more than 35%, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi contends each is able to exercise dominant market power at provincial or district level. The inquiry was due to begin in May, but was delayed to allow further submissions. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

20 May 2015

PPC rises despite 38% earnings fall – Business Day

SA’s dismal construction and mining markets saw the country’s premier cement maker,PPC post a 38% plunge in headline earnings per share in the six months to March. The company, its reputation hard hit by the sudden departure of former CEO Ketso Gordhan late last year after a battle with the board, has seen its share price halve in the past year. Victor Seanie comments.
view article

19 May 2015

Vodacom’s earnings decline for a ‘year of rebasing’ – Moneyweb

Vodacom Group Limited announced its financial results for the year ending March 31 2015, with Group headline earnings per share tumbling by 4% to 860 cents. The mobile network operator called the period ‘a year of rebasing’ amidst pressure on SA consumer spending, intensifying competition and a ‘challenging macro environment’. Aslam Dalvi comments.
view article

15 May 2015

Profit shoots up 75% and Sappi makes strides in cutting back debt – Business Day

Sappi’s profit for the second quarter shot up 75% from the same period last year to $56m. This was even as total sales fell 15% to $1.34bn. A one-off pension fund gain in Europe boosted operating earnings of the pulp, paper and chemical cellulose maker, with special items providing gains of $68m, up from $4m in the same period previously. Abdul Davids comments.

14 May 2015

Metair's great big hairy, audacious goals – Moneyweb

The world’s vehicle manufacturers are racing to meet tightening emissions legislation. They are investing heavily in technology to achieve increased fuel economy and lower vehicle emissions through innovations such as engine downsizing, turbocharging and weight reduction. They are also looking at start-stop engine management systems as a cost effective solution. JSE-listed Metair is one of a handful of global component manufacturers with the technology to supply the batteries used in start-stop systems. Simon Anderssen comments. Click here to read

30 April 2015

Sappi: Positive signs but not everyone is convinced – Finweek

Steve Binnie, at the helm of Sappi for the past 10 months, has had a tough shift. The papermaker’s fortunes abroad, where Sappi derives 75% of its sales, are waning due to falling demand and subdued prices for paper. Added to this is a net debt of US$2bn (R24bn), due in part to the US$1.1bn (R13bn) buyout of M-Real’s graphic papers business in 2008, which is putting its balance sheet and cash flow under pressure, leaving it with little room to invest in higher growth opportunities. Abdul Davids comments.

30 April 2015

Market happy with BAT's slow burn – Business Day

The local market seemed reassured by yesterday’s quarterly management statement from cigarette giant British American Tobacco (BAT) in spite of a further drop in volumes, with the share falling 0.7% to R656.60. BAT’s business model is built on being able to counter dwindling cigarette volumes with pricing power — especially in its Global Drive Brands (GDB) such as Kent, Lucky Strike, Pall Mall, Dunhill and Rothmans. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.

29 April 2015

SP corporate credit rating cut to add to Anglo's troubles – Business Report

Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P) yesterday slashed its assessment of Anglo American’s ability to repay its debt because of the sharp drop in iron ore prices. In a statement yesterday, S&P said it had lowered the corporate credit ratings on the company to BBB-/A-3 from BBB/A-2 and the South Africa national scale rating to zaAA from zaAA+. The outlook is stable. It said the stable outlook reflected its view of the limited downside to the rating over the coming 12 to 18 months, supported by the company’s expectations that it will complete its divestment programme by the end of 2016. Rubin Renecke comments.

29 April 2015

Advtech U-turn on Maravest deal – Business Day

Private education group Advtech has compromised on the funding structure of its proposed acquisition of small rival Maravest after two of its biggest shareholders registered opposition last week. On Friday, Advtech issued a Stock Exchange News Service statement detailing a revised transaction that would see the R450m deal settled with a combination of cash and scrip. Advtech, which owns Crawford Colleges and Trinity House, initially proposed an all-share settlement with an issue of 54.4million new shares at 802c per share to the vendors of Maravest. But Kagiso Asset Management and Coronation Fund Managers, collectively holding 40% of Advtech’s issued shares, objected vehemently. They said existing shareholders would be materially diluted by the issue as the price was pitched well below their 1,100c per share fair value estimate for the company’s shares.

22 April 2015

Big investors oppose Advtech deal – Business Day

Private education group Advtech looks set for a showdown with its two biggest institutional shareholders over the funding structure for a proposed R450m acquisition of smaller rival Maravest. On Tuesday, Coronation Fund Managers and Kagiso Asset Management — which collectively have a 40% stake — confirmed they were likely to vote against the Maravest transaction. The deal needs the support of 50% of Advtech’s shareholders at a general meeting next Wednesday. Simon Anderssen discusses our misgivings around the proposed transaction.

15 April 2015

Can deliver, needs variety – Investors Monthly

Having laid a solid foundation, dairy producer Clover Industries now wants to scale up and improve earnings through the development of new products, acquisitions and expansion into the rest of Africa. The group is exploring entry into the baby food market, taking advantage of the trust it’s earned over decades as a milk producer. Soft drinks is another sector it’s researching. Elsewhere on the continent, it’s planning to get into Angola and grow its small operation in Nigeria. However, SA remains its focus — the fragmentation of the local market means opportunities for sizeable tie-ups could be pursued. Dirk van Vlaanderen discusses the group’s deals in recent years and credits management’s disciplined approach to deal making, which has resulted in value creation for shareholders.

13 April 2015

Is Naspers now the most important share on the JSE? – Moneyweb

When the JSE began trading on Monday morning, Naspers opened at R2 001.50 per share. This was the counter’s first foray above R2 000, a price that is just below 88% higher than where it opened on April 14 last year. It closed trade at R1 980 a share. Going back two years, the surge in the share price has been even more remarkable. On April 12, 2013, Naspers opened at R565. In other words, it has almost doubled over each of the last 12 month periods. Abdul Davids comments. Click here to read

12 April 2015

SA media battle goes down to the wire – Sunday Times

The media industry is murder right now, with newspaper circulations and advertising under pressure and no new obvious business model to replace the tired old way of the past. SA’s media companies are hoping at least part of the antidote lies in the launch of three new “wire” services – essentially agencies that sell news articles to newspapers, radio, TV stations or anyone needing content. The catalyst for this sudden rush: the demise of the South African Press Association (Sapa), the nonprofit wire service that supplied the media houses until two weeks ago, when it shut its doors. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

10 April 2015

Retailers coining it despite sluggish economy – Finweek

In a subdued economy like this one, where growth is pegged at around 2%, the latest retail figures from Stats SA surprised on the upside, particularly for more durable items. While overall retail trade sales increased by only 1.7% year-on-year in January, hardware, paint and glass sales were up 6.4%, while sales of fashion and leather goods increased 8.8%. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

9 April 2015

Deindustrialisation: How we got to this point – Financial Mail

Trade liberalisation, which kicked off in the dying days of apartheid and involved slashed import tariffs, proved a huge shock to the manufacturing sector — the first of many. “Trade liberalisation was a shock which many companies, after having benefited from apartheid protectionism, probably couldn’t live with. It needed to be better calibrated and better aligned with other policy support instruments and in much closer collaboration with the sector itself,” says Garth Strachan, deputy director-general of the department of trade & industry’s industrial development unit. Abdul Davids comments in this article.
view article

9 April 2015

Manufacturing: Down in the dumps – Financial Mail

The manufacturing sector can and must adjust to a higher cost base to stem the tide of deindustrialisation in SA. Fuelled by consumption and credit, the service sector has easily outpaced the growth of productive sectors, pointing to an unsustainable and deep structural problem. Manufacturing, which holds the key to long-term job creation, employs 1,75m people, or 11,4% of the workforce — down from 2m people and 14,6% of the labour force in early 2008. Abdul Davids offers insight into this vital sector.
view article

1 April 2015

Portentous developments – IRFinity Magazine

Gavin Wood discusses how 2014 presented market dislocations and structural changes that have important implications for the course of financial markets.
view article

25 March 2015

Steady as she goes – Financial Mail

The jury is still out on whether Barclays Africa Group is back in the banking game. There are indications that SA’s third-largest bank by market value is on track for a turnaround. But not all the signs are positive. A year ago, CEO Maria Ramos committed to a three-year strategy to turn around the SA retail and business banking business, which has shed customers and revenue over the past few years. Jihad Jhaveri comments on the bank’s retail operations.
view article

23 March 2015

Sun in R94bn offer for casino group Peermont – Business Report

Hotel chain Sun International planned to buy out casino resort group Peermont for R9.4 billion in line with the group’s strategy to enhance its existing portfolio and seek new growth opportunities, it said on Friday. “This acquisition will enhance Sun International’s position and scale as a leading hotel, resort and gaming operator, which in turn positions it well to undertake larger developments and acquisitions globally,” said Sun International’s chief executive Graeme Stephens. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on the deal.
view article

18 March 2015

Clover races to meet demand – Business Day

Clover Industries, which started making yoghurts and custards this year, will spend R65m on installing another yoghurt production line because the one it bought from DairyBelle has run out of capacity two years earlier than expected. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on the company’s interim results.
view article

18 March 2015

PPC takes title of being SA's worst performing stock – Business Report

Cement-maker PPC is under new leadership, in talks about a possible merger and facing tougher competition at home and on the continent. That’s made it the country’s worst performing stock this year. The shares are down 37 percent so far this year, closing at R17.44 on the JSE yesterday and trading almost 47 percent lower than when former chief executive Ketso Gordhan’s resignation was announced on September 22. Victor Seanie comments.
view article

16 March 2015

Big five banks growing in hard times – Business Day

SA’s big five banks grew earnings by low double digits last year, despite a tough economic environment which has put consumers and corporate customers under pressure. The economy grew 1.5%, while FirstRand, Standard Bank, Barclays Africa, Nedbank and Investec grew headline earnings by an average 11.6%, EY African financial services sector leader Emilio Pera said on Thursday. Jihad Jhaveri comments on Standard Bank.
view article

16 March 2015

Discovery eyes bigger stake in card venture – Business Day

Discovery plans to buy a bigger stake in DiscoveryCard from its partner FirstRand, in order to access a greater share of the profits and to start offering more banking products. The financial services group will pay FirstRand R1.35bn of the R5bn it is planning to raise in a rights issue for the increased share of the card business. Justin Floor comments.
view article

16 March 2015

Implats may seek market finance – Business Report

Metal prices at five-year lows will prompt Impala Platinum Holdings to seek market financing should it proceed with a targeted $2.5 bn of spending on mines. That is the view of Kagiso Asset Management, which says that the South African producer’s five-year plan for building new shafts will force it to either raise cash or scale back capital expenditure unless platinum prices rebound. Gavin Wood comments.
view article

5 March 2015

MTN looks to data growth in Africa – Moneyweb

Data is a major growth area for the MTN Group, with low smartphone penetration, low data consumption per subscriber and the lack of fixed data services all contributing to a ‘very large data opportunity’ in Africa. This is according to Aslam Dalvi. “MTN remains well positioned to capitalise on this opportunity,” he adds.
view article

5 March 2015

Company comment: Bidvest – Business Day

Companies have been reeling out their results in past weeks, and if one trend is evident across the myriad sectors they represent it is that SA Inc is in some sort of trouble, despite their valiant efforts. Along with Eskom’s woes, they talk of a slow economy, strikes and a lack of government spending in productive enterprise. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on Bidvest’s first-half results.
view article

5 March 2015

Declines in manufacturing demand, activity narrows in Feb – Engineering News

The seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) fell by a steeper-than-expected 6.6 index points to 47.6 in February, driven chiefly by a 16.2-point decline in the business activity index (BAI) to 45.5. While January’s figure was “artificially high”, owing to seasonal factors, Kagiso Asset Management research head Abdul Davids advised on Monday that the group had not expected such a dramatic decline in the February index.
view article

5 March 2015

Challenge to cement future pricing power – Financial Mail Investors Monthly

The promise of a quickly growing international business was, until September last year, propping up PPC’s shares despite a weak South African market. But the stock’s gains were whittled away during a four-month boardroom drama, which was finally resolved in late January after the board was reconstituted at the company’s AGM, and new CEO Darryll Castle was given a vote of confidence by shareholders. In early February, the cement company’s shares were worth a third less than at a peak in September, prior to Ketso Gordhan’s acrimonious exit as CEO. With a new CEO and board now in place, the question to ask is whether or not the PPC share is a buy at these depressed levels. Victor Seanie comments.
view article

5 March 2015

Discovery to grow Vitality in the US with new partner – Business Day

Discovery has partnered with a major US life insurer to launch products developed on the Vitality model in April. The US insurer, which Discovery has not yet named, will launch a suite of products similar to those of Discovery Life in SA. The Discovery Life model offers lower premiums to customers with healthier behaviour. The insurer benefits from lower claims and improved mortality. Justin Floor comments.
view article

5 March 2015

Discovery vows to shake up life insurers – Business Day

Insurance group Discovery will use the bulk of a R5bn rights issue to grow its UK life insurance business in its bid to become the leader in a market it has vowed to shake up. CEO Adrian Gore said R3bn of the capital to be raised would be used in its UK VitalityLife business and as much as R2bn would be used to fund what he called “adjacent markets” in SA. Mr Gore would not be drawn on what this meant but said more information would be made available on March 10, when the details of the rights offer would be finalised. The funding would be for “an expansion of what we are doing in a slightly different space”, Mr Gore said of Discovery’s plans in SA. Justin Floor comments.
view article

5 March 2015

Imperial’s vehicle import unit stalls in half-year results – Business Day

Imperial Holdings performed to market expectations in deteriorating trading conditions in the six months to December, as the weaker rand depressed margins and affected competitiveness. Group revenue grew 9%, mainly on acquisitions, but operating profit fell by the same percentage in the period. This saw core earnings per share fall 14% in the year, even as cash flow from operating activities rose 73% to R1bn.  Qaqambile Dwayi comments.
view article

24 February 2015

Nedbank African units boost profit – Business Day

Nedbank’s operations in the rest of Africa contributed almost 4% to full-year earnings, with the inclusion for the first time of its recently acquired stake in the West African Ecobank Transnational Incorporated. Headline earnings from the South African group’s rest of Africa operations rose from a low base of R8m in 2013 to an estimated R133m last year. Total headline earnings were R9.9bn. SA’s four largest banks — Nedbank, FirstRand, Standard and Barclays Africa Group — are all pursuing growth strategies in the rest of Africa as SA’s economy slows. Jihad Jhaveri comments.
view article

24 February 2015

Sun International may look to the East – Business Day

Gaming and leisure group Sun International could turn its attention to Asia after proposals to consolidate its Latin American units into a bigger entity. In its half-year to end-December results, the group said all key properties (barring Sun City) showed increased profits after cost cuts last year. Recently Sun International announced a merger of its Latin American casino operations with similar-sized Latin American casino operator Dreams. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

18 February 2015

Aveng earnings fall as revenues drop – Business Day

Aveng saw revenues fall 14% as net operating earnings dropped 19% and headline earnings a share plunged 58% in the six months to December. Along with many of its JSElisted peers the construction and engineering group is feeling pressure from a decline in mining investment and the poor rollout of government infrastructure in SA. Rubin Renecke comments.
view article

11 February 2015

Clover holds lots of promise – Business Day

Clover Industries could boost its operating profits by about a third if it reaches a medium-term target to have 15% market share in custard and yoghurt. Dirk van Vlaanderen discusses our investment case for Clover.
view article

8 February 2015

China’s boom and boon for SA workers – Business Times

In December 2011, more than 6 000 workers at South African company, Kumba Iron Ore each received a pay-out of R576 045. They were being rewarded for the good fortune of being employed by a company that supplied commodities to the booming Chinese market.  Gavin Wood comments on growth in China and the country’s role in the global commodities market.
view article

2 February 2015

Craft beer: Still in its infancy – Finweek

In South Africa, more than 50 microbreweries have found an opportunity in the shadow of market leader South African Breweries (SAB) to cater for a new market of beer drinkers, but compared to international counterparts, SA’s craft beer industry is still relatively untapped. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

2 February 2015

Sasol decides to delay plant to investor fanfare – Business Report

Investors yesterday cheered Sasol’s decision to delay development of its $14 billion (R1611n) gas-to-liquids (GTL) plant in Louisiana in the US amid the falling oil price, which has declined over 50 percent in the last six months. The announcement caused Sasol’s shares to gain as much as 2.7 percent to R427.54. However, Sasol’s share closed 41c down at R416.16. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

22 January 2015

China weather dents SABMiller quarterly beer sales – Business Day

SABMiller’s weather-related woes in China spilled over into the brewer’s third quarter ended December, the company said yesterday in a trading update that showed its total beer volumes are on track to shrink in its 2015 financial year. SABMiller’s lager volumes were 1% lower in its third quarter after a similar contraction in the first half of its financial year, ending in March. In China, volumes fell 9% in the third quarter, following a 10% fall in the previous three months when bad weather over the peak summer season dented sales. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

21 January 2015

Tighter belts are in – Financial Mail

SA retailers will have to continue battling it out on price for most of this year as consumers remain under pressure from high debt levels and lower disposable income. The decline in oil prices is expected to boost consumer confidence, but analysts caution that growth in employment and wages will remain subdued. Furthermore, the scheduled electricity load shedding is expected to have a negative effect on sales as it will disrupt business activities. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

20 January 2015

Tough year ahead for SA retailers, warn experts – Business Report

Food retailers have started the year on a solid footing with good trading results for the festive season. However, they would have to work hard to raise their game in the new year as consumers would find themselves in more financial trouble than the previous year, according to equity analysts. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on Massmart.
view article

19 January 2015

Australian deal props up Woolworths sales – Business Day

Woolworths’ food and clothing sales grew at a slower pace on a like-for-like stores basis in the 26 weeks to December 28 compared with a year ago, the company’s trading update released on Thursday shows. But thanks to its R23.3bn takeover of Australian department chain David Jones (DJs), Woolworths’ sales rose 55.2% in the first 26 weeks of its 2015 financial year. Simon Anderssen comments.
view article

19 January 2015

December PMI inches lower, but remains above neutral 50-point mark – Engineering News

Despite declining by 3.3 index points in December, the seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) ended the year marginally above the neutral 50-point mark, at 50.2. During the second and third quarters of 2014, the PMI languished below 50, but the average reading for the fourth quarter came in at 51.2 index points compared with an average of 48.2 for the first nine months of the year. Abdul Davids said that the December index confirmed earlier expectations that the final quarter of the year would likely be the best quarter of 2014 for actual quarter-on-quarter manufacturing production growth. view article

19 January 2015

Led by the dollar gold price – Financial Mail

Harmony Gold Mining’s decision to scale back, though not abandon, its Golpu project in Papua New Guinea is typical of the capital expenditure cuts being forced upon the gold industry by a period of prolonged low prices. Harmony and its partner in Golpu, Newcrest Mining, are looking beyond current gold prices, and investors have responded positively. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

19 December 2014

Media moguls' brave new world – Business Times

Gavin Wood comments on the Blackstar/Times Media Group transaction, emphasising that it is transformative for Times Media and is being led by highly-rated people.
view article

19 December 2014

'n Portefeulje vir 2015 – Beeld

Abdul Davids is quoted on Metair in this article which highlights certain stocks to watch in 2015.
view article

19 December 2014

Abil legislative push concerns investors – Moneyweb

Investors in South African banks are growing increasingly concerned over proposed legislation stripping them of some rights as creditors, fallout from the August collapse of African Bank Investments Ltd. The Banks Amendment Bill would give the administrator of a failed lender the right to sell assets and change capital structures without consulting investors, according to the document, compiled by the country’s National Treasury. If enacted, the proposal would apply any time a financial institution goes into administration. Gavin Wood comments. view article

19 December 2014

Sappi in pilot project to make low-cost 'wonder material' – Business Day

Sappi and Edinburgh Napier University have developed a lower-cost, commercially viable way to make potential “wonder material” nanocellulose. The parties say nanocellulose has the potential to be used in a wide range of applications — from packaging and touchscreen displays, to car panels and wound care — with the potential demand for 35-million tonnes a year by 2020. The JSE-listed Sappi group will build a pilot plant to produce Cellulose NanoFibiils following a three-year partnership between researchers from Sappi and the Scottish university. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

9 December 2014

Tiger learns from mistakes in Nigeria – Business Day

Tiger Brands has not been put off buying businesses of scale and its rest-of-Africa strategy has been unaffected by its bad experience in Nigeria, CEO Peter Matlare says. Tiger’s acquisition of Dangote Flour Mills (DFM) in Nigeria two years ago for a “full price” has proved a major drag on the group’s earnings, with impairments and losses from Nigeria featuring prominently in Tiger’s results since. Of its initial R1.5bn investment for a majority stake in DFM, which was made to build scale in the country and serve as a platform for other opportunities, Tiger has had to write off the entire R849m premium paid for the business as well as a further R105m against the value of DFM’s assets. Victor Seanie comments.
view article

9 December 2014

Sasol bond showing strain of plunge in oil – Moneyweb

The price of brent crude oil has dropped 38% since the end of June to a five-year low this month. Sasol Ltd.’s bonds are signaling investor concern that debt levels of the world’s biggest maker of motor fuel-from-coal are coming under pressure amid a 38% plunge in oil this year. Abdul Davids comments. view article

19 November 2014

SABMiller keeps climbing despite weaker results – Moneyweb

SABMiller announced weaker than expected interim results, with revenue growing by just 2% and organic constant currency operating profit rising by 3% from the comparable period last year. Group adjusted earnings per share came in at 123.6 US cents per share, up from 120.4 US cents per share last year. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on the result.
view article

19 November 2014

German property 'good bet for SA investors' – Business Day

South African fund managers, who have limited opportunity to invest in the residential property market on the JSE, are becoming increasingly bullish on listed housing funds in Germany, which is believed to be the European country with the largest percentage of its population renting instead of owning homes. Investors who want exposure to Germany’s housing market through the German Stock Exchange can choose from at least 10 real estate investment trusts (Reits) that own rental housing portfolios. Justin Floor discusses the investment case for German residential property.
view article

11 November 2014

Discovery eyes UK's insurance markets – Business Day

The UK health and life insurance markets are perfect targets for Discovery’s “disruptive” approach based on behavioural economics, CEO Adrian Gore said yesterday. Discovery has bought the remaining 25% of its British business for R2.8bn to take full ownership of PruHealth and PruProtect, paving the way to entrench the Vitality brand in the northern hemisphere market and extend its product range using the Vitality insurance model. Justin Floor comments on the strategic impact of this development.
view article

11 November 2014

Tongaat Hulett 'able to grow sugar output' – Business Day

Tongaat Hulett can grow its annual sugar production by 400 000 tonnes over the next four years without having to invest in new mills, largely on expected improvements in yields and extraction rates, CEO Peter Staude said yesterday. This would reduce unit cost production, given that most of the cost base was fixed, he said after Tongaat Hulett reported a 16.6% rise in headline earnings for the six months through September to R773m. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

11 November 2014

Sappi expects rebound in price of lucrative wood pulp – Business Day

Sappi expects prices of dissolving wood pulp to remain depressed for about 18 months, as excess supply and low cotton prices put pressure on the price of the cotton substitute. Sappi has about a 20% share of the world market for dissolving wood pulp, which it ships mainly to clothing and textiles makers in the Far East at far higher margins than its paper products. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

10 November 2014

Massmart faces mall food fight – Business Report

Massmart was feeling the pressure from constant litigation from its competitors which are seeking to block the company’s move in growing its retail food business. In the latest case in the Durban High Court, Judge Peter Olsen granted an interim interdict to prevent Massmart from converting its Game store into their food retailer Cambridge at Senzangakhona Shopping Centre in Ulundi, KwaZulu-Natal. The order was granted after The Spar Group approached the court to complain that it had an exclusivity lease agreement which bars other retailers who compete with Spar including bakeries, butchers, supermarkets, green grocers, wholesalers’ cash & carries, and liquor stores. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on Massmart’s move into fresh food.
view article

6 November 2014

Tumbling gold leads rout of commodities – Business Report

Gold led the rout of commodities as investors unwound their positions, accumulated before the US Federal Reserve announcement to end quantitative easing. Gold, silver and platinum tumbled as the dollar’s rise to a five-year high cut demand, wiping almost $2 billion (1122.1bn) from the value of precious metals-backed funds. The commodity prices declined as the Republicans soared to victory on Tuesday in US mid-term elections to win both US Houses of Congress and Bank of Japan governor Haruhiko Kuroda said he saw no limit to the steps the central bank might take to defeat deflation. Gold, which is perceived to be a hedge for investors, dropped to a four-year low as bullion for immediate delivery slid 2.3 percent to $1 141 an ounce in London. Jihad Jhaveri comments on what gold producers can do to deal with the volatility of the gold sector.
view article

5 November 2014

Support for austerity is vital, says Lamberti – Business Day

A possible sovereign ratings downgrade could have “severe consequences” for SA, though this has been mitigated by Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene’s “excellent” first medium-term budget, Imperial Holdings CEO Mark Lamberti says. SA is the source of 66% of Imperial’s revenue. But Mr Lamberti told the diversified logistics and industrial services company’s annual general meeting (AGM) yesterday that “the willingness” of Mr Nene’s Cabinet colleagues to “support the necessary austerity must now be tested”. He subsequently told Business Day that he was not pointing fingers at single ministries, but was talking about government adhering to “general austerity” measures. Qaqambile Dwayi comments on Imperial’s revised guidance.
view article

5 November 2014

Kagiso PMI rises for third consecutive month in October – Business Day

Recovery in the manufacturing sector is proving more robust than expected with the key leading indicator of manufacturing conditions breaking decisively through the neutral 50-point barrier last month and hitting its best level in a year. The Kagiso purchasing managers index (PMI) rose for a third consecutive month to 51.8 in October from 50.8 in September, indicating that activity in the manufacturing sector continued to improve following months of weakness and that recovery in the sector may be gaining traction. This marks the best level it has reached since November 2013. Abdul Davids comments.

view article

28 October 2014

Strategy pays off for Famous Brands – Business Report

The efficiencies of Famous Brands’ integrated supply chain strategy had helped it to remain resilient during the adverse trading conditions of the past six months. According to Dirk van Vlaanderen, the company reported a solid set of interim results, with a strong performance from the supply chain business offsetting more subdued trading conditions in the franchising division.
view article

27 October 2014

MTN banks on mobile money – Business Day

MTN’s mobile money service has the potential to contribute 15% of MTN SA’s total revenues in the long term, the company said last week. In June MTN partnered with Pick n Pay, Boxer stores and Visa to re-launch mobile money service that will enable customers to transfer and receive money, and also pay bills. Mobile money is one of the key areas of focus for MTN Group as it focuses on growing data-driven services. Aslam Dalvi comments on this service.
view article

24 October 2014

MTN drops on Nigeria worries – Business Day

Shares in MTN Group fell 3.79% to close at R235.03 on concerns about regulatory pressure in the mobile operator’s largest market, Nigeria, which dragged down its subscriber growth there for the three months to September. However, MTN expects an improved performance during the remaining quarter of the year, after it resolved a number of matters with the Nigerian regulatory authority. Aslam Dalvi discusses the company’s prospects.
view article

24 October 2014

Reforms at Anglo begin to yield fruit – Business Report

Diversified global mining company Anglo American posted solid production figures in the quarter to September. Anglo raised its full-year iron-ore production forecast to a range of 45 million tons to 46 million tons. Rubin Renecke and Abdul Davids comment on the company’s production numbers.
view article

23 October 2014

BAT's cigarette sales volumes slowly going up in smoke – Business Day

The volume of cigarettes British American Tobacco (BAT) sold continued to decline in its third quarter ended September, amid contracting smoker markets in countries including Russia, Vietnam, Brazil, Poland and Canada. The JSE’s biggest stock by market value — R1.2-trillion — saw its share fall as much as 4.58% to R585 yesterday after it released interim results for the nine months ended September. Analysts described the performance as “disappointing”. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

21 October 2014

Retailers in for a rough ride – Finweek

Faced with a sputtering economy, high levels of consumer debt and a clampdown on unsecured lending, clothing and furniture retailers are under pressure to find new sources of growth. Big retailers reliant on offering credit sales to lower and middle-income consumers have been particularly vulnerable, with financial results reflecting an increasingly cash-strapped and cautious consumer environment. Simon Anderssen comments in this article.
view article

15 October 2014

Autopage's new role – Financial Mail

Altron TMT is repositioning one of its telecom businesses, Altech Autopage Cellular, to offer increased internet services with a focus on corporate clients. Autopage’s business of reselling the products and services of various mobile network operators has come under pressure from price competition and the reduction in mobile termination rates. Its rival, Nashua Mobile, which belonged to Reunert, closed shop because of the overall deterioration of the business model. Aslam Dalvi comments on this development.
view article

8 October 2014

BAT: Confounding sceptics – Financial Mail

These days tobacco companies no longer carry the “sin share” badge but are increasingly given the more ominous “death share” tag. Ethical issues aside, the investment proposition, on paper, is preposterous: imagine investing in a company offering a much maligned product to a shrinking consumer market. It’s even more difficult when you consider that brand marketing opportunities for purveyors of cigarette brands are severely restricted and product pricing is loaded with ever rising excise duties. Dirk van Vlaanderen discusses how pricing and gaining profitable market share are crucial elements for BAT in an industry suffering volume declines.
view article

6 October 2014

Diversification helps grow Phumelela earnings – Business Day

Phumelela Gaming and Leisure — owner of five racecourses with training centres in Gauteng, the Free State, Northern Cape and Eastern Cape — saw earnings per share shoot up 32% in the first six months to July, underpinned by improved international operations. The positive momentum continued in the second half with a weaker rand providing further benefits. Dirk van Vlaanderen is quoted in this article.
view article

16 September 2014

Listed property still offers opportunities – Moneyweb

Over the past decade, the local listed property sector has experienced stellar average compounded growth in excess of 20%, but does the sector still have attractive longer-term return prospects in the face of higher bond yields and interest rates? Justin Floor gives our view on this asset class.

view article

11 September 2014

Pick n Pay distribution upgrade is on track – Business Report

Pick n Pay was on track with the completion of its central distribution programme, which had already reduced distribution costs by 10 percent, the retailer said. Over the years, the supermarket chain has been criticised for not investing in centralised distribution and has had operational challenges at one of its distribution centres. Abdul Davids comments that the progress in Pick n Pay’s distribution centres would enable it to catch up with its competitors.
view article

10 September 2014

Penalty shoot-out – Financial Mail

Dirk van Vlaanderen is quoted in this company analysis of Cape-based empowerment ventures, Brimstone and Grand Parade Investments.
view article

10 September 2014

FirstRand on track to open Ghana bank – Business Day

FirstRand, SA’s largest bank by earnings and market capitalisation, hopes to set up a fully fledged bank in Ghana early next year and has R10.2bn in surplus capital to invest in its growing operations in countries such as Mozambique, Nigeria, Zambia and India. Jihad Jhaveri comments on the company’s annual results.

view article

9 September 2014

Sasol pours oil on fears of forced retrenchments in SA – Business Report

Sasol allayed the fears of forced retrenchments in South Africa yesterday, as it rolled out its restructuring programme in which it has raised its target for cost cuts to at least R4 billion a year by 2016. Sasol was looking to southern Africa and North America for gas and chemicals growth opportunities and had set aside capital spending of R50 billion for 2015 and R65bn in 2016 as it progresses its growth strategy. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

8 September 2014

Pioneer Foods spins off poultry – Business Report

Seeking a dignified exit from the constrained poultry sector, Pioneer Foods has finally managed to unbundle and list Quantum Foods as a separate entity. Quantum Foods is now a self-contained listed business within the Pioneer Foods group with a focus on animal feeds, eggs, and broilers, among other operations. Victor Seanie comments on the unbundling.
view article

5 September 2014

Pioneer reverses gains on 'dispiriting' trading update – Business Day

Following a 5.38% rally on Wednesday, shares in Pioneer Food Group shed 4.74% to close at R122 on Thursday, despite the food and beverage group saying its full-year earnings would be more than 20% better than previously. Analysts said Pioneer’s trading update may have disappointed the market, given weak sentiment and expectations for a greater jump in earnings since adjusted earnings at the half-year mark were up 58%. Victor Seanie comments.

view article

4 September 2014

Discovery business model affords growth, says CEO – Business Day

Discovery’s business model lends itself to opening new businesses, giving it the potential to grow profit at about 20% a year, CEO Adrian Gore said yesterday. Discovery reported operating profit increased 23% to R5bn in the year to June. Operating profit growth has averaged 22% a year over the past 10 years. The insurer views SA as its primary market and the UK as its second primary market. Both are capital intensive. To grow its global footprint further without incurring high capital costs, Discovery is partnering with global insurers in markets including China, Singapore and Australia.  Justin Floor comments on the company’s results.
view article

3 September 2014

Bidvest decries tough trading climate in SA – Business Day

Trading conditions in SA in the last quarter “became increasingly disruptive, compounded by the detrimental effects of prolonged labour unrest and declining consumer demand”, Bidvest said in its results for the year ended June. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on the company’s results
view article

3 September 2014

PMI improves, but economy still in contraction mode – The New Age

South Africa’s key manufacturing index, the Kagiso Purchasing Mangers’ Index (PMI) – for August – reflected slight recovery, rising by 3.1 index points to 49.0 from 45.9 in July. However, it is still below the 50 mark, signalling contraction. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

29 August 2014

Tighter consumer spending hits Massmart sales – Business Report

Massmart’s Game stores are taking a beating from the slowdown in consumer spending, as shopping patterns show a shift towards necessities such as food and clothing. Massmart chief executive Guy Hayward said the consumer environment had dramatically hardened in the past few years, changing the way consumers were shopping. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

29 August 2014

Massmart takes knock from Game – Business Day

Massmart’s Game continued to underperform, weighing on profitability, as sales of durable goods fell due to pressure on consumers. “As middle- and lower-income customers are struggling, selling them general merchandise and durables is very, very difficult. Customers don’t have enough money so they’re spending it on food and increasingly less on durables,” Massmart CEO Guy Hayward said yesterday. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on Massmart’s results.
view article

28 August 2014

A new leaf, or pulp fiction – Business Day Investors Monthly

A burden of debt lies on Sappi, but since the group’s repositioning, faith in it seems to be increasing. Abdul Davids comments on Sappi in this feature article.
view article

28 August 2014

Rising costs, strikes hit Imperial's results – Business Day

Imperial Holdings experienced falling demand in its key European logistics market of Germany in the year to June, but poor gross domestic product growth, rising wage and transport costs, and labour disruptions in SA, its core market, all helped diluted headline earnings per share fall 7%. Abdul Davids comments on the company’s 2014 results.
view article

28 August 2014

State not building up construction sector – Business Day

Construction and engineering are not for the fainthearted, and the state’s lack of understanding of how the sector works is a big part of that. The construction industry contributes just 3.5% to gross domestic product (GDP), and gross fixed capital formation as a percentage of GDP is less than 20%. China, Canada and Australia have investment-to-GDP ratios of more than 25%, and construction sectors that contribute more than 7% to the economy. Rubin Renecke comments on Aveng.
view article

26 August 2014

Sun International looks offshore – Business Report

With its feet firmly in the Chilean casino market, Sun International would focus on bedding down its Latin American strategy and seek entry into a very “tough” Asian market, the casino and hotel operator’s chief executive, Graeme Stephens, said yesterday. Over the past year, Sun International had made significant progress on its business strategy to expand its casino business into other emerging markets against the backdrop of a very subdued local economy Stephens explained. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments.
view article

26 August 2014

Sun rides out 'subdued' year – Business Day

Gaming and leisure group Sun International made the most of the weak hand that it was dealt in the year to the end of June. Results released yesterday showed that a focus on cost efficiencies allowed Sun to record a slightly stronger second half, with a 5% gain in full-year earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) to R3bn, coming off a 5% gain in revenue to almost R11bn. Sun executives described trading conditions as subdued, with minimal improvement expected in the medium term. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on the company’s results.
view article

20 August 2014

Company comment on Metair – Business Day

Metair’s start-stop battery technology is a big market opportunity as original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) across the world race to meet tightening vehicle emissions legislation. Kagiso Asset Management Investment Analyst, Simon Anderssen says OEMs are looking at start-stop engine management systems as a cost-effective solution to vehicle pollution, while investing in better fuel economy and lower exhaust output through engine downsizing, turbocharging and weight reduction.
view article

20 August 2014

Billiton confirms sale plans for most SA assets – Business Day

Global resources group BHP Billiton’s plans to spin off non-core businesses estimated to be worth US$16bn — including most of its assets in SA — will create a new company with flexibility to seek growth opportunities in Southern Africa and elsewhere. Billiton CEO Andrew Mackenzie yesterday confirmed weeks of detailed speculation about Billiton’s plans to dispose of assets that did not fit in with its focus on large, long-life resources in iron ore, copper, coking coal, petroleum and potash. Rubin Renecke comments.
view article

14 August 2014

What makes a good investment in equities? – Business Report

Equity investments are at the heart of most balanced, multi-class investment portfolios. In this issue of the Towers Watson Quarterly Investment Manager Review, investment managers explain what they look for when choosing equities and discuss how they combine these in equity portfolios. Abdul Davids comments.
view article

14 August 2014

Mpact enters plastic recycling sector with R350m PET plant – Business Report

Mpact was venturing into plastic recycling with plans to build a plant for R350 million in partnership with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), the listed packaging group announced yesterday. The plastic recycling plant will process about 29 000 tons of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles a year, generating 21 000 tons of new raw material directly from waste material that would otherwise be sent to landfill sites. Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on the company’s results.
view article

14 August 2014

Productivity gains lift Mpact – Business Day

Packaging manufacturer, Mpact, lifted its basic underlying earnings per share 19.2% in the first half to June, saying that the creditable achievement was in the face of considerable economic headwinds. The group attributed this mainly to a favourable sales mix and improved productivity relating to capital expenditure over the past four years.  Dirk van Vlaanderen comments on the company’s results.
view article

13 August 2014

Cost review – Financial Mail

MTN SA aims to return to the 34% – 35% operational margin range in the full year to December following a dismal performance in the interim period to June. The performance targets may result in the implementation of a cost reduction programme that could result in retrenchments. MTN has been under pressure for some time now due to increasing competition from rivals.  Aslam Dalvi comments on MTN’s plans to rationalise costs in this article.
view article

10 August 2014

MTN eyes data in new turf war – Sunday Times Business Times

Africa’s largest cellular company, MTN, which reported a 9% rise in half-year profits this week and now has 215 million subscribers across the world, has a plan to boost flagging revenue in South Africa. CEO Sifiso Dabengwa said this week that MTN intended to expand its fibre network to the homes of its wealthier South Africa clients during the third quarter of this financial year. This is an important move because it illustrates that MTN is not just going to let its share of the South African market slip, despite the fact that this remains one of the weakest of its regions. Aslam Dalvi comments on MTN’s strategy in this article.
view article

8 August 2014

Mondi builds on record financial performance – Business Day

Mondi says it has seen a steady improvement in all key financial metrics in the six months to June, building on a record performance for the full year to December. Underlying operating profit of €377m in the interim period was up 3%, underlying earnings per share rose 5%, and cash generated by operations was up 2%. Rubin Renecke is quoted in this article.
view article

7 August 2014

Abil’s need for R8.5bn alarms big investors – Business Day

African Bank Investments’ (Abil’s) shock announcement on Wednesday that it wants to raise at least another R8.5bn to keep the beleaguered business going has spooked major shareholders, and raised questions about its future. Gavin Wood comments in this article.
view article

6 August 2014

Nedbank battens down debt hatches – Business Day

Nedbank is battening down the hatches with increased portfolio provisioning in case the recent mining and metal workers’ strikes and difficult economic conditions lead to more bad debt among embattled consumers. Jihad Jhaveri comments on the company’s interim results.
view article

1 August 2014

Investors worry about Sappi's $23bn debt – Business Day

Sappi’s share price fell 5.37% to R40.69 yesterday despite the pulp and paper products group indicating it was on track to report a profitable 2014 financial year, as lingering debt worried the market. The group has made $67m profit in the first three quarters of its 2014 financial year, from a $161m loss last year. In its third quarter ended June, Sappi’s net profit was $17m, the company reported yesterday. Abdul Davids, Kagiso Asset Management research head, said Sappi’s $2.3bn net debt is “stubbornly high and the deleveraging is taking longer than management’s guidance”.
view article

1 August 2014

PMI contracts for fourth consecutive month on strikes – Engineering News

The seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) has contracted for the fourth consecutive month, signalling the manufacturing sector’s continued subpar performance. However, while the protracted strikes in the platinum mining, steel and engineering sectors had weighed on manufacturing output over the past few months, the industry was expected to recover in the second half of the year as the industrial action ends and production ramps up, said Kagiso Asset Management research head Abdul Davids.
view article

25 July 2014

Finding value in a worried bull market – Finweek

What we are currently seeing on the JSE is certainly out of the ordinary. It is a rare thing for record highs to be met with such a lack of enthusiasm. Investors have benefitted from an incredible bull run over the last six years, but there is a very palpable underlying nervousness about where this is going. With every gain that the market makes, the feeling grows that it is moving towards the edge of a cliff. At current valuations and with a number of technical measures pointing to a market that looks overbought, some sort of a pullback appears to be lurking. Gavin Wood says that investors are right to be cautious, particularly given the manner in which the JSE has made its gains.
view article

25 July 2014

Soft drink sales drive gains by SABMiller – Business Day

Double-digit sales increases in SA and the rest of Africa helped lift SABMiller’s group net producer revenue — or sales excluding acquisitions, disposals and currency movements — by 6% in its three months ended June. A strong Easter trading period in SA boosted domestic beverage sales growth to 12%, while recovering lager volumes elsewhere in Africa contributed to an 11% revenue jump in the region. Dirk van Vlaanderen is quoted in this article.
view article

16 July 2014

Woolworths looks to lead southern hemisphere after deal – Business Report

While the Federal Court of Australia is expected to tie up loose ends on one of the biggest departmental store deals this week, retail analysts said yesterday that the Australian market was the perfect destination for Woolworths to grow its footprint. Woolworths will soon know if the Australian court approves of its R22.3 billion deal to buy department store chain David Jones. Simon Anderssen is quoted in this article.
view article

15 July 2014

Food producers' stocks return to favour – Business Day

Food producer stocks have made a strong run since late February, with sector giant Tiger Brands being among the largest gainers despite some negative announcements. “In February, the food producers index was trading at a five-and-a-half-year low relative to the All Share Index.” Kagiso Asset Management analyst Victor Seanie said yesterday.
view article

9 July 2014

Can you mitigate against a market pull back? – Moneyweb

Right now is one of those tricky times to be in the stock market. While investors have benefited from the strong gains on the JSE and other exchanges around the world, there is nevertheless an underlying uncertainty about how long this can continue. Gavin Wood discusses the market in this article and outlines where we are seeing opportunities.
view article

1 July 2014

PMI ticks up slightly but local factory sector continues under pressure – Engineering News

While the seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) recovered slightly in June, edging up to 46.6 index points from 44.3 in May, the average PMI for the second quarter, at 46.1, was below the neutral 50-point mark and the first quarter’s 50.6 index point average.
view article

26 June 2014

Banking on a solid strategy for turnaround – Investors Monthly

When it comes to the big four banks, Barclays Africa Group has in the past few years been the one everyone loves to pick on.
view article

26 June 2014

Diversify, restructure to stay afloat – Financial Mail (Top Companies)

Media giant Naspers continues to be the best performer in the listed media sector. Late last year its share price hit the R1 000 mark, primarily due to the meteoric rise in the Tencent share price.
view article

19 June 2014

Zuma intervention 'unlikely to help miners' – Business Report

In his seventh State of the Nation address, President Jacob Zuma acknowledged the country’s stagnant economy and committed to direct personal involvement in addressing the challenges in the troubled mining sector.
view article

17 June 2014

Weak rand and dollar bonds help boost Sasol shareholders – Bloomberg

Bond investors are rewarding Sasol with record-low yields relative to US debt as the South African automotive-fuel producer benefits from a weaker rand and expansion abroad.
view article

17 June 2014

'Magic cash' the only option for many in SA – Business Day

One in every two South Africans with credit is behind on payments, according to the National Credit Regulator (NCR). Little wonder then, that the country’s retailers are reporting slower growth, with those heavily reliant on credit taking the worst beating.
view article

10 June 2014

A strong case of self-belief – Business Day Live

Luxury brands icon Richemont raises the old investment dilemma of the appropriate premium investors should pay for a well established value fortress.
view article

6 June 2014

Agencies expected to downgrade SA's rating – Business Report

In seven days, international rating agencies Standard & Poor (S&P) and Fitch are expected to downgrade South Africa’s local currency rating. According to a note by Morgan Stanley, the agencies are expected to downgrade South Africa’s sovereign rating to BBB+ from A- next Friday.
view article

5 June 2014

Stable local coal market – Financial Mail

Forecasts for thermal coal prices over the next five years are mixed, making it difficult for investors to know whether to buy, hold or sell their coal shares.
view article

4 June 2014

Businesses coming under cash stress – New Age

Experts warned that insolvency and liquidations rate are likely to spike in months ahead due to poor business activity shown in the latest Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), but some analysts argued that business rescue can create new investment opportunities in SA, with Chinese companies most interested.
view article

4 June 2014

Bond bears wound Impala over lost ounces – Bloomberg

South Africa’s costliest mining strike is sending yields on Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd.’s bonds to an eight-month high as lost production cuts the company’s revenue.
view article

3 June 2014

Manufacturing at record low – New Age

The key indicator for the country’s manufacturing sector, the Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), continues to tumble, falling to 44.3 index points in May, from 47.4 in April. This is further affirmation of the fragile state of the economy.
view article

27 May 2014

Sugar producers: much more than sugar – Moneyweb

If Professor Tim Noakes had his way, people would stop consuming sugar in all of its different forms. Fortunately for sub-Saharan producers Tongaat Hulett and Illovo Sugar, and their roughly 75 000 employees, consumption of the sweet stuff continues to increase.
view article

23 May 2014

SABMiller upbeat on savings plan's success – Business Day

SABMiller will save about R5.2bn a year by 2018 through its programme to create a groupwide business services unit and a centralisation of various back office functions, the company said yesterday after the release of its full-year results.
view article

23 May 2014

Managers lift platinum mine stakes – Business Report

Coronation Fund Managers and Kagiso Asset Management are increasing their exposure to the platinum sector, despite the protracted labour strike that saw the JSE platinum index fall as much as 6.7 percent in the three months to March.
view article

21 May 2014

Coronation falls on growth warning – Business Day Live

Coronation Fund Managers’ share price fell 6.7% to close at R96 on Tuesday after it reported a 69% increase in earnings for its six months to March, again warning this level of growth was unsustainable.
view article

16 May 2014

Richemont prefers own shares to new acquisitions – Business Day Live

Richemont, the Swiss luxury goods group old controlled by the Rupert family, has declared its preference for re-investing in existing businesses and continuing its share buy-back programme rather than using its huge cash pile for acquisitions.
view article

15 May 2014

Alternative investments for pension funds – Business Report

In this feature on alternative investments for pension funds, Jihad Jhaveri gives his view on how to assess the attractiveness of commodity investments at this time and what the pros and cons are of investing in commodities such as gold and platinum directly, as opposed to the shares of commodity producers.
view article

12 May 2014

ArcelorMittal SA bounces back – Business Day

South Africa’s premier steel maker, ArcelorMittal SA, saw headline earnings back in the black in the first quarter of the year, mainly on increased sales and rising production as it bounced back from a fire at its main Vanderbijlpark facility early last year.
view article

29 April 2014

Imports, supply glut pressure cement sector – Business Day

The domestic cement industry is facing tough conditions in the short term, with excess supply expected to keep margins under pressure. As a result, any further investments are likely to be channelled into upgrading dated and inefficient plants.
view article

25 April 2014

Amplats mines will mechanise – Business Report

Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) must mechanise its mines in the long term, Anglo American chief executive Mark Cutifani said yesterday.
view article

16 April 2014

Pick n Pay narrows gap with rivals – Business Report

Pick n Pay believes it is in a stronger position than a year ago, after opening 111 stores, cutting costs and getting closer to lower-income communities.
view article

9 April 2014

Woolworths aims for a place in the sun – Moneyweb

Investors were unnerved by Woolworths’ bold plans to acquire Australia’s oldest retailer David Jones, in the process creating the second largest department store in the southern hemisphere and one of the biggest retailers in the world.
view article

3 April 2014

Hope of growth for Nampak 'lies in rest of Africa' – Business Day

Global Credit Ratings this week noted the divergence between the performance of Nampak’s domestic and African businesses, saying the rest of the continent was clearly “jumping ahead”.
view article

3 April 2014

Insurance giants must first win at home – Finweek

Recently appointed Liberty Holdings CEO Thabo Dloti has to convince the investment community that the financial services group is still a force to be reckoned with in the insurance industry.
view article

3 April 2014

Netcare UK off the hook – Moneyweb

In an apparent about turn, the UK’s Competition Commission has found that Netcare’s UK operation BMI Healthcare will not have to sell any of its hospital facilities after all.
view article

2 April 2014

SA banks reap rewards of difficult African ventures – Business Day

Banks are starting to reap the rewards from their operations in the rest of Africa, with Standard Bank benefiting the most from its continental footprint. Collectively, the banks earned just under 10% of their total profit from the rest of Africa in their latest set of results.
view article

2 April 2014

Kagiso PMI drops by 1.4 index points in March – Engineering News

The seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) dropped by 1.4 index points to 50.3 in March, mainly driven by a decline in the new sales orders index, which dropped to its lowest level since 2006.
view article

28 March 2014

Banks in good shape to weather storm – Business Day

The big four banks are well positioned for the negative turn expected in the lending cycle, analysts have said after the recent release of their results. Standard Bank and FirstRand have pulled ahead of the pack to compete neck-and-neck for the top position.

26 March 2014

Strike action hurts Metair – Moneyweb

Last year’s debilitating strike in the automotive sector cost automotive component manufacturer Metair R87 million in lost profit (before interest and tax), while strikes in the mining industry cost its non-automotive division a further R41 million.
view article

26 March 2014

Tongaat Hulett takes flak over land sales – Business Day

A Tongaat Hulett shareholder believes the group is taking the wrong tack as it battles the “strong headwinds” facing sugar producers, and that it should shift more effort to developing and retaining its valuable KwaZuluNatal property holdings.
view article

25 March 2014

RCL to exit euro debt that Foodcorp took on – Bloomberg

The rand’s slide over the past year has persuaded RCL Foods, the country’s biggest chicken producer, to switch out of euro-denominated bonds into rand debt to ease the fallout from the currency’s decline.
view article

24 March 2014

Why banks rock – Moneyweb

In a climate of low economic growth and a declining consumer cycle, banks are not always popular investment holdings. However, one asset manager believes there is value to be had in the sector and not one but two banking stocks are its top holdings across their equity funds.
view article

11 March 2014

AVI grows profit in tough conditions – Business Day

Branded consumer products group AVI grew its earnings 10% in the six months to December, which CEO Simon Crutchley said was a “solid performance in a pretty constrained environment”.
view article

11 March 2014

How not to blow R209bn – Moneyweb

The restructure underway at Sasol is the biggest organisational and management change the petrochemical company has experienced in its 64-years of operation and is worth taking note of.
view article

11 March 2014

Inflation pass-through still to come for retail – Business Day

With little relief on the horizon to buoy spending, the consumer confidence outlook for the remainder of the year is anything but optimistic. There is little to support expenditure as inflation and living costs continue to rise, putting strain on disposable income.
view article

7 March 2014

RMI stakes in insurers 'doing well' – Business Day

Rand Merchant Insurance Holdings (RMI), which holds significant investments in four South African insurance groups, grew its diluted headline earnings per share 24% to 93.7c in the half-year to December.
view article

6 March 2014

Mpact earnings rise on plastics division growth – Business Day

Mpact yesterday reported that underlying operating profit increased 12% and underlying earnings per share shot up 22.2% in the year to December. The company, one of the largest paper and plastics packaging businesses in southern Africa, said the results reflected a “solid” operating performance and “sound” strategy.
view article

6 March 2014

Regulators, competition threaten MTN – Business Day

MTN is under pressure from regulators in its two biggest markets – Nigeria and SA – with intense competition also threatening its growth, especially in SA.
view article

5 March 2014

FirstRand 'to weather rise in bad debt' – Business Day

FirstRand is steeling itself for rising interest rates, which will see bad debts grow as battered consumers face increasing financial pressure.
view article

3 March 2014

PMI higher but business activity still restrained – Engineering News

The seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) increased by 1.8 index points to 51.7 in February, helped by a rebound in the new sales orders index.
view article

28 February 2014

Massmart sees pressure from rate hike – Business Day

Walmart-owned Massmart yesterday said the recent interest rate hike seemed certain to make things more difficult for middle-income customers who were in a weak financial position.
view article

20 December 2013

What’s in store for the JSE in 2014? – Moneyweb

For equity investors who stuck to their guns, 2013 was a good year. While individual shares in certain struggling sectors may have put an end to dreams of an overseas holiday, the All Share Index (Alsi), despite having experienced severe volatility in certain periods, performed well and is up around 12% in the year to date (excluding dividend growth). But as 2014 looms on the horizon, the question on many an investor’s mind has got to be: What’s in store for next year? Gavin Wood shares his thoughts in this article. view article

20 December 2013

Wealth of metal at our fingertips – Mail & Guardian

A switch to aluminium cans is set to revolutionise the informal scrap and recycling industries in SA. The earth below South Africans’ feet may be rich in many minerals, but one element has always been missing — this nation imports 100% of the raw materials it needs to make aluminium. Savvy urban prospectors in Gauteng, however, have detected a mother lode of the metal spilling out of bars, restaurants and homes, in the shape of aluminium cans. A revolution has begun in the South African packaging industry.
view article

4 December 2013

Kagiso PMI ends year positively – The New Age

THE key leading manufacturing indicator released yesterday points to improving conditions in November. The latest Kagiso Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) increased by 1.7 points to 52.4. A number of PMIs across the globe have also rebounded over the 50 level mark which indicates positive activity.
view article

2 December 2013

Did the market misjudge Remgro’s part in Caxton offer? – Moneyweb

Is Remgro making a bid for Caxton? This seemed to have been the market’s initial thoughts on Friday after a consortium, led by entities controlled by RMB and Remgro, announced that it signed a binding transaction implementation agreement to acquire the entire share capital of ElementOne for R2.3bn. Abdul Davids shares his thoughts on this. view article

2 December 2013

Manufacturing production expected to recover in Q4, Nov PMI rises to 52.4 – Engineering News

Manufacturing production would likely, in the final quarter of 2013, recover from the sharp decline recorded in the third quarter as a result of prolonged strikes in the automotive sector, Kagiso Asset Management head of research Abdul Davids said on Monday. view article

1 December 2013

Shariah investing: a growing market – Risk SA

Long before responsible investing became trendy, Shari’ah-compliant investment products, catering for a niche Muslim market, had entered the scene. Although the prime target group for this type of investing is the Muslim community (about two per cent of the South African population), Shari’ah investing is seeing increased interest from investors who are keen on responsible investing. Previously, Shari’ah-compliant equity funds were the only product available, catering mainly for discretionary savings by high net worth individuals. But demand for Shari’ah-compliant investments has grown significantly over the last few years, says Abdul Davids, head of research at Kagiso Asset Management.
view article

22 November 2013

Africa buoys SABMiller, hit by weak rand – Business Day

Africa has once again provided a fillip to SABMiller’s results, which showed solid growth thanks to emerging-market operations – although the weaker rand eroded SA’s contribution.
view article

19 November 2013

Nampak buys can operation in Nigeria – Business Day

Nampak has bought Alucan Packaging, a beverage-can operation in Nigeria, funding the deal through existing cash resources and debt facilities. Africa’s largest packaging group also said yesterday it had been granted an option to acquire a leading rigid plastics company in West Africa’s largest economy.
view article

19 November 2013

Hospital groups’ offshore bet ramps up – Moneyweb

If there is one thing South Africans can do well, it’s run private hospitals, and this country’s big three hospital groups are determined to prove that exporting this skill will pay off.view article

17 November 2013

Biegsessie oor mikrolener sondes – Sake Rapport

Ellerines was die swak plek, erken Leon Kirkinis, uitvoerende hoof van African Bank (Abil). Abil het hom in 2008 gekoop en daar was altyd ongelukkigheid daaroor onder beleggers. Vroer vanjaar het Abil uiteindelik aangekondig hy is nou ernstig daaroor om Ellerines to verkoop.
view article

14 November 2013

The case for passive and active investment management – Business Report

In this feature on the case for passive and active investing, Gavin Wood gives his view on whether the case for active management is stronger for some asset classes or markets than for others.
view article

12 November 2013

What value does your fund manager add? – Moneyweb

The debate around fees in the unit trust industry is an important one. It is right that investors should be aware of how much they are paying and asking questions about what they are getting in return. But they also need to be asking the right kinds of questions. view article
 

8 November 2013

Nigeria te uitdagend – Sake 24

Woolies onttrek hom oor swak infrastruktuur, huurkoste Ian Moir Kaapstad. – Nigerie is toe nie die land van melk en heuning nie. “Woolworths is nie ‘n maatskappy wat gehalte inboet nie. Die besluit om hom aan Nigerie to onttrek, is in die belang van die groep en sy aandeelhouers,” se Abdul Davids, hoof van navorsing van Kagiso Batebestuur.
view article

8 November 2013

Will Vodacom take the gap? – Mail & Guardian

Vodafone’s interests in Africa maybe up for grabs if AT&T does acquire its European operations. A shake-up of the telecommunications landscape in Africa may be in the offing after United States giant AT&T said in an interview with Bloomberg that it was interested in acquiring United Kingdom listed Vodafone. AT&T said, though, that it was not interested in acquiring Vodafone’s operations in emerging markets but only its European operations.
view article

8 November 2013

ArcelorMittal in 'positive cash position' – Business Day

Steel producer ArcelorMittal SA says despite fairly weak trading conditions, it saw a rise in headline earnings to 50c per share in the third quarter ended September, and a positive cash position. But net cash fell sharply to R575m from the R1.1bn seen in the preceding quarter, following the normalisation of working capital after a devastating fire temporarily shut its main Vanderbijlpark plant earlier this year. The results also included a net positive effect from an insurance claim of R179m for the fire that had ravaged the Vanderbijlpark facility. Steel sales rose 3% year on year to 1.13-million tonnes, rising 9% quarter on quarter.
view article

7 November 2013

Mondi expects 25% profit rise in better market – Business Day

Mondi yesterday said in its interim management statement, from the end of June to end-September, that underlying operating profit was expected to rise 25% despite scheduled maintenance shutdowns during the second half of this year that will cost up to €60m. The global packaging and paper group estimates an underlying operating profit of €172m for the September quarter, from €138m in the comparable period last year. It says this comes about as a result of improved market conditions in packaging paper and also the performance of the South African division.
view article

5 November 2013

The companies to watch – Moneyweb

In a recent article we looked at which of the smaller unit trust managers are showing convincing signs of growth. Which of them, we asked, might grow into the big players of the future? It is however also worth looking at which asset managers are already in that transition – the “next tier” if you like. These are fund managers that have already established a reputation in the market and a broader product offering. view article

4 November 2013

PMI index rebounds in October – New Age

South Africa’s key leading indicator of activity in the manufacturing sector rebounded to the 50 level mark in October after slipping 49.1 index points in September recovering some grounds by increasing to 50.7 index points, according to the Purchasing Managers’ index (PMI). Anything above the 50 point mark indicates expansion and below that level indicates contraction. However, despite the improvement, the seasonally adjusted Kagiso PMI remained below the average reading of 52.7 recorded during the third quarter of this year.
view article

31 October 2013

JSE All Share: 45 500 points and counting – Moneyweb

The JSE’s All Share Index has had a significant run over the past few months, gaining almost 20% since late in June on indications that the US Federal Reserve will delay tapering its quantitative easing programme. Which bodes the question: does the JSE still offer value for long-term investors? view article

28 October 2013

MultiChoice prepares for tough competition with local shake-up – Business Report

MultiChoice has implemented sweeping changes to its management line-up that suggest the largest pay-television broadcaster in South Africa is fine-tuning its strategy for a tougher competitive environment ahead. 
view article

25 October 2013

When the price is right – Financial Mail

Gold miners around the world are squirming under the lash of weakening gold prices and rising costs. With a few exceptions, gold shares lagged a rising gold price and are falling faster than bullion in a bear market. 
view article

25 October 2013

Loyalty card and drug delivery lift Clicks – Business Report

Clicks shares leapt 8 percent yesterday to the highest level since early June after the health and beauty retailer said full-year turnover rose 13.6 percent despite a muted consumer spending environment. Sales were boosted by promotional activity and growth in the pharmaceutical distribution business boosted revenue. 
view article

25 October 2013

AgriGroupe bly systap oor wie sy beleggers is – Sake 24

Die sluier kon gister nie gelig word oor wie die AgriGroupe-beleggers is wat die genoteerde landboumaatskappy Afgri koop nie. Chris Venter, uitvoerende hoof, het by navraag oor waarom daar soveel geheimsinnigheid oor die beleggers is, gese by dink nie noodwendig dit is die geval nie.
view article

21 October 2013

Share market out of sync with tepid economy – Personal Finance

The local equity market continued to run this past quarter despite a weakening local economy, leading fund managers to warn that certain parts of the market are now “unsustainably high”. Global markets also delivered strong returns, with local investors who had invested offshore in rands benefiting greatly from a weak rand.
view article

14 October 2013

Amplats-Amcu deal minefield – Business Report

The compromise reached by South Africa’s largest platinum producer, Anglo American Platinum (Amplats), with the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) may come back to haunt it. Analysts unpacking the decision on Friday expressed views ranging from Amplats having been pushed into a corner to that it had failed its shareholders, to speculation that chief executive Chris Griffith might have to pull up his socks. 
view article

14 October 2013

Swakker Chinese groei kan Richemont knou – Sake 24

Richemont se opbrengsvooruitsigte lyk nie so blink soos sy Van Cleef & Arpelsjuweliersware nie. In die geheel toon die luuksegoederegroep se verskeie streke en verkoopskanale stewige groei.
view article

11 October 2013

Company comment – Business Day

Metair is shifting focus from where vehicles are made to where they are sold. By taking a majority stake in Turkey’s leading lead-acid battery maker it has entered new markets in Eastern Europe and Russia, the Middle East and Africa.
view article

8 October 2013

Icasa offers relief for cellular callers – Business Report

Consumers look set to be the ultimate winners when the telecommunications industry shifts to reflect new call termination regulations. The proposed reductions in call termination rates in the draft regulations released last week are an inflection point for incumbents Vodacom and MTN, while encouraging smaller operators Cell C and Telkom Mobile to threaten aggressive cuts in retail prices. 
view article

3 October 2013

Retiring CEO helped Imperial weather the storm – Business Day

Analysts lauded JSE-listed Imperial Holdings CEO Hubert Brody, who yesterday announced he would step down in the first half of next year, after having been in charge since 2007. Mr Brody was praised for having steered Imperial through the 2008/09 recession and for developing businesses in Germany and in the rest of Africa. 
view article

2 October 2013

PMI falls to an eight-month low as auto sector strike hurts new sales orders – Witness

The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) fell to an eight-month low in September as a strike in the auto sector hurt new sales orders, suggesting a slowdown in the manufacturing sector, a survey showed yesterday. 
view article

2 October 2013

Manufacturing takes a dive – The New Age

Manufacturing fell in September because of prolonged strikes in key industries, the Purchasing Mangers’ Index (PMI) showed yesterday. The index declined steeply by 7.4 points to 49.1 in September after a successful run in which it held above the 50 level mark for four consecutive months.
view article

30 September 2013

Kumba, Mittal look at new supply deal – Business Day

Kumba Iron Ore and ArcelorMittal SA could avoid arbitration altogether if they can reach agreement on a new long-term iron-ore supply contract. Although an agreement also depends on the outcome of a Constitutional Court challenge, a resolution between two of the biggest companies listed on the JSE would end a three-year dispute that has drawn in a number of other parties, including the departments of mineral resources and trade and industry.
view article

25 September 2013

Soaring sugar imports put jobs in danger – Business Report

The local sugar industry’s slow action to stem imports of cheap sugar may result in sugar mills closing down and 40 000 jobs being lost. Illovo Sugar managing director Dave Howells said last week that the industry was late to apply for a tariff increase.
view article

20 September 2013

New chapter opens for Exclusive Books – Business Day

Exclusive Books, the high-end book chain found in most of SA’s top shopping malls, has been sold by Times Media Group (TMG) to a consortium led by Medu Capital, a majority black-owned and managed private equity company. 
view article

20 September 2013

Market has big expectations of Remgro – Moneyweb

Investment holdings company Remgro has demonstrated its resilience in a tough economic climate with a 34% jump in intrinsic value to R204.83 per share in the year to June.  view article

17 September 2013

FirstRand captures the market's attention – Business Day

FirstRand’s consistent strong performance over the past three years has made it a compelling investment case at a time when many analysts favour Standard Bank. 
view article

17 September 2013

Competition will cap cement firms' profits – Business Day

South African cement demand grew strongly between 2000 and 2007 and producers were highly profitable, returning significant cash to shareholders, says Ross Heyns, an analyst at Kagiso Asset Management. But since the 2007 market peak, volumes have fallen sharply and margins have come under pressure. 
view article

11 September 2013

FirstRand posts 20% increase in earnings – Business Report

FirstRand is the third of the big banks to report a hit from the controversial collapse of First Strut earlier this year. Notice of the exposure followed yesterday’s release of FirstRand’s results for the 12 months to June, which revealed a strong 20 percent hike in normalised earnings a share to R2.718. 
view article

11 September 2013

FNB plan om kliente te lok bly wenresep – Sake 24

First National Bank (FNB) se strategie om nuwe kliente met innoverende produkte en dienste to lok, were steeds vrugte af. 
view article

5 September 2013

Intu positive as retailers in UK 'more confident' – Business Day

Amid stagnant economic growth, UK-focused Intu Properties has been repositioning itself and will be substantially better placed in the market “as and when the economy picks up”, according to management. 
view article

5 September 2013

Diversified offering boosts Eqstra – Business Day

Eqstra’ biggest growth driver in the year to June was its value added and diversified product offering, CEO Walter Hill said when presenting the company’s results yesterday. 
view article

4 September 2013

A lot riding on new investments – Moneyweb

Discovery Holdings may be one of the best performing shares on the JSE this year, having risen by 38%, but fickle shareholders were quick to punish the company when its trading update surprised to the negative.  view article

3 September 2013

Factories build up steam – The New Age

The key indicator of activity in the manufacturing sector continued its momentum for the fourth straight month in August, suggesting production improvements since the wildcat strikes of 2012.
view article

3 September 2013

PMI reaches six-year high as demand and operating conditions improve – Engineering News

The seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) increased by 4.3 points to 56.5 in August, staying above the neutral 50 threshold for the fifth consecutive month and reaching its highest level since August 2007. view article

30 August 2013

Kwaai prysmededinging kan Woolies uiteindelik knou – Sake 24

 Woolies se sterk mededinging om sy pryse aantreklik to maak, kan in die volgende boekjaar teen hom begin tel. Nietemin is die groep baie ingenome met sy resultate vir die boekjaar tot einde Junie 2013. 
view article

30 August 2013

Strikes take toll on Implats earnings – Business Day

Stability was improving among Impala Platinum’s (Implats’) Rustenburg workforce after last year’s strikes, but there were still some tensions, CEO Terence Goodlace said yesterday. 
view article

29 August 2013

Australian portfolio lifts Growthpoint – Business Day

Growthpoint Properties, SA’s largest listed property company with a market capitalisation of about R44bn, yesterday reported distribution growth of 7.2% to 149c per linked unit for the year ended June.
view article

27 August 2013

Sun International sees profits rise, despite lower gambling revenue – Moneyweb

Leisure and gaming company Sun International has restored profitability to all of its local and international operations – with the exception of Namibia. view article

23 August 2013

Retailers feel consumers' pinch – Business Report

Retailers Massmart, Truworths and Edcon reported lacklustre results yesterday, indicating that severe pressure on consumer spending has not abated. 
view article

23 August 2013

Al meer wil die' groep se rokkies dra – Sake 24

Die Truworthsgroep het sy aandeel van die vroue- en manskleremark vergroot en ook twee mylpale bereik. Sy kleinhandelverkope het die R10 miljard-kerf verbygesteek en die getal winkels is verby die 600kerf.
view article

21 August 2013

Banking on change – Financial Mail

A price war in SA, regulatory interventions in some of the countries in which it operates, and more competition are forcing the MTN Group to re-engineer its business, cut costs and look for other revenue sources.
view article

21 August 2013

Emira reports turnaround, cuts vacancy rate by half – Business Day

Emira Property Fund yesterday reported a “substantial turnaround” and a return to distribution growth for the year ended June, with its distribution of 114.59c per participatory interest up 3.5% on the prior year. 
view article

20 August 2013

Banks face hazard of continent's bad debts – Business Day

Standard Bank’ strategic decision to exit other emerging markets to focus on Africa boosted its recent results, but growing bad debt is still a reminder of how hazardous it is to do business on the continent at times.


view article

16 August 2013

Standard lifts earnings 11% despite weak conditions – Business Day

Standard Bank grew its normalised headline earnings 11% to R8.2bn in the first half of the year despite weak economic conditions and increasing bad debt, while its operations in the rest of Africa have started to gain traction. 
view article

16 August 2013

Laer koste laat Standard groei – Sake 24

Standard Bank het in April 2012 pakkette bekend gestel wat kliente se bankkoste verlaag het. Hiermee het hy kliente behou, nuwes gewerf en hulle meer transaksies laat doen.
view article

16 August 2013

Signs of consolidation – Engineering News

The seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) remained above the key 50-point mark for the fourth consecutive month in July, when it increased marginally by 0.6 points to 52.2, but challenging market conditions persist.
view article

15 August 2013

MTN maps job cuts to optimise costs – Business Report

MTN, the continent’s largest cellular network provider, is weighing up job cuts as cost optimisation becomes a key focus over the remaining months of the financial year to December. 
view article

15 August 2013

Mpact delivers a 'solid set of results in a difficult market' – Business Day

Packaging maker Mpact says it has grown profit under “difficult trading conditions”. In the six months ended June revenue rose 9.7%, underlying operating profit was up 6.1% to R236m and underlying earnings per share shot up 20.9% to 77c. 
view article

12 August 2013

Cutting the fat at Times Media – Citizen

The restructuring of the bloated and inefficient Times Media business continues with the news that subsidiary I-Net Bridge has been sold to the Naspers-owned McGregor BFA for R115 million. 
view article

12 August 2013

I-Net Bridge sold 'because it needs more investment' – Business Day

The sale by Times Media Group of its I-Net Bridge division for R115m is in line with the group’s plans to become a focused media and content provider, while the buyer, McGregor Bureau for Financial Analysis (BFA), is looking to provide financial data for the African market.
view article

12 August 2013

Mondi posts 'very good' performance – Business Day

Mondi Group CEO David Hathorn said on Thursday the “very good” set of interim results for the six months ended June were derived from a “good” operating performance and the integration of recent acquisitions. 
view article

8 August 2013

Anglo American: in recovery – Finweek

Rubin Renecke, an investment analyst at Kagiso Asset Management,  believes the diversified mining group holds good potential in the long run.
view article

8 August 2013

Old Mutual stock rallies on increased interim profit – Business Day

Strong growth in emerging markets and the US asset management business sent Old Mutual’s share 4.61% higher to R30.41 yesterday after it released its interim results for the six months to June.
view article

5 August 2013

Sappi pins its hope on new business focus – Business Day

Sappi headlined the start-up of its new “high-margin” US and South African chemical cellulose projects in its third-quarter results ended June, as it continued to make losses in tough environments for paper, especially in Europe, its biggest market. 
view article

2 August 2013

Liberty plugs gaps in Nigerian offering – Business Report

Liberty Holdings was in the process of entering the asset management and life insurance markets in Nigeria, chief executive Bruce Hemphill said yesterday during the life insurer’s interim financial results presentation. 
view article

2 August 2013

Liberty top man to Nigeria in pursuit of target – Business Day

Liberty Holdings said yesterday it had deployed one of its executives to Nigeria to help the company bed down acquisitions in West Africa. 
view article

2 August 2013

Tenant failures drag down Intu – Business Day

JSE-listed Intu Properties’ share price fell 2.12% to trade at R49.87 by 3pm yesterday after the UK property company reported an unchanged 5p interim dividend per share for the six months ended June, while like-for-like net rental income fell 2.9%. 
view article

2 August 2013

ArcelorMittal recovering after fire – Business Day

ArcelorMittal SA saw a strong second-quarter earnings recovery in the six months ended June as output normalised after a devastating fire at its major Vanderbijlpark works in February.
view article

1 August 2013

Price increases offset falling consumption for BAT – The International Convenience Store Retailer

British American Tobacco (BAT), the world’s second-largest tobacco group by market share, reported a 4% rise in first-half revenue to £7.57bn recently, as price increases helped offset falling consumption.
view article

1 August 2013

Tongaat forecasts large rise in sugar output for the year – Business Day

Listed agricultural and agri-processing company Tongaat Hulett said that all resolutions were passed by the requisite majority of shareholders at its annual general meeting yesterday and it continued to make “substantial progress”. 
view article

1 August 2013

BAT revenue grows on emerging market sales – Business Day

British American Tobacco (BAT), the world’s second-largest tobacco group by market share, yesterday reported a 4% rise in first-half revenue to £7.57bn as price increases helped offset falling consumption. 

view article

25 July 2013

AECI to spend R1bn a year on expansion – Business Day

AECI is aggressively pursuing its plans to expand its operations into South America to improve volumes from its chemicals and explosives business, CEO Mark Dytor said at the group’s interim results presentation yesterday.
view article

19 July 2013

Cutifani to ride rough in review of Anglo – Business Report

“Underground mining performance was principally impacted by the intermittent illegal industrial actions, the national bus driver strike which impacted employees’ ability to commute to work and safety stoppages,” the company said in its production update.
view article

9 July 2013

You need a strong stomach for your local assets – Maya on Money

While a globally diversified fund may be first choice, most South Africans have the majority of their assets in South Africa. view article

8 July 2013

Up and up MR goes – Finweek

Construction and engineering group Murray & Roberts (M&R) has managed to get rid of most of its dead-wood projects. It is, in fact, now leading the charge in recovery against its peers.
view article

5 July 2013

Go to the self-help section – Financial Mail

The sale of Exclusive Books raises the question of the future of publishing.
view article

2 July 2013

Investment Insights: Investing after Bernanke – Moneyweb

The Fed’s announcement that it plans to taper off its quantitative easing program has seen vast amounts of foreign money leave emerging markets, including South Africa. view article

2 July 2013

MR winds up disposal – Daily Dispatch

Murray & Roberts says it has concluded the disposal of its Construction Products Africa manufacturing businesses for about 111.3-billion, which includes Much Asphalt, Rocla, Technicrete and Ocon Brick.
view article

2 July 2013

Lonmin's Magara steps into tough job – Business Report

While beleaguered platinum miner Lonmin expects its new chief executive, Ben Magara, will be “getting his feet on the ground” over the next few weeks, analysts have taken a different view.
view article

2 July 2013

SA economy is still 'unsettled' – The New Age

A key indicator of the state of the country’s economic activity improved sharply in June as it increased by 1.2 points to 51.6, from 50.4 in May but some analysts argue that it is too early to get excited given the current “strange” economic environment.
view article

1 July 2013

Murray Roberts wraps up sale of units – Business Day

Murray and Roberts says it has concluded the disposal of its Construction Products Africa manufacturing businesses for about R1.3bn, which includes Much Asphalt, Rocla, Technicrete and Ocon Brick.
view article

1 July 2013

PMI improves, but manufacturing conditions remain tough – Engineering News

The seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) increased by 1.2 points to 51.6 in June, marking its third consecutive month above the key 50-point mark, with all the major sub-indices showing modest improvement, except for the employment sub-index, which continued to decline. view article

27 June 2013

Faced with major challenges – Financial Mail Top Companies

Margins in information and technology (IT) firms are under pressure. According to Datacentrix, the industry is experiencing pressure, in particular from the telecommunications industry.
view article

27 June 2013

Print versus digital – Financial Mail Top Companies

Media companies are increasingly developing digital strategies to sustain their operations, as more consumers opt to get their information and news online. The growth of the Internet as a result of lower data prices and the adoption of smartphones is steadily eroding the newspaper business.
view article

27 June 2013

Data market to the rescue – Financial Mail Top Companies

The year 2013 could be the turning point for SA’s troubled fixed-line operator Telkom. Long suffering investors will be hoping that the company, whose share price dipped close to R12 in early 2013, will get a new lease of life when government announces its plans for the group.
view article

27 June 2013

Foreign shares look attractive – Risk SA

Despite a weak economic landscape, South African equities have performed well over the past year, largely due to foreign investment in industrial and retail stocks. However, fund managers are unconvinced that this bullish sentiment can be maintained in the face of a dismal economic growth forecast of 2.7%.
view article

27 June 2013

Assessing South Africa’s Gold and Platinum Industry – CNBC Africa TV interview

The sentiment around the platinum and gold industry looks set to get worse as strike season gets underway. Abdul Davids shares his thoughts on the challenges and opportunities facing the sector. Watch interview
 

26 June 2013

Naspers toasts bet on emerging markets – Business Day

Listed media group Naspers said yesterday its internet revenue had for the first time surpassed that from its Multichoice pay-TV offering, as its gamble on its China-based Tencent social media site makes it the envy of industry rivals.
view article

26 June 2013

Telkom takes legacy assets impairment – Business Day

With the stroke of a pen, Telkom impaired the carrying value of its assets by R12bn yesterday, following a review by its board.
view article

23 June 2013

You need a strong stomach for your local assets – City Press

While a globally diversified fund may be the first choice, most South Africans have the majority of their assets in South Africa.
view article

21 June 2013

No reservations – Financial Mail

Homegrown and international hotel groups are expanding into the rest of Africa, as economic growth boosts business and leisure travel on the continent.
view article

6 June 2013

Telkom accounting changes to reflect fair net asset value – Business Report

A change in Telkom’s accounting process, aimed at reflecting the company’s net asset value more accurately, was under consideration, chief executive Sipho Maseko said yesterday.
view article

5 June 2013

Swak rand kan bitter oil wees vir groepe – Sake 24

‘n Swak rand kan farmaseutiese groepe laat les opse omdat die staat se enkeluitgangprys beteken dat hulle nie sommer medisynepryse kan verhoog nie.
view article

4 June 2013

Manufacturing battling to gain impetus – Sowetan

The seasonally adjusted Kagiso Purchasing Managers’ Index remained unchanged at 50.4 in May. This indicated the manufacturing sector was struggling to gain any real momentum, head of research at Kagiso Asset Management, Abdul Davids, said.
view article

4 June 2013

China sneezes, SA feels sickly – Business Report

Economic data from China have sent conflicting signals over the past few days about the outlook for the second-largest economy.
view article

4 June 2013

Manufacturing still facing hard times in spite of boost from weaker rand – Business Day

Local manufacturers face a difficult few months in spite of the competitive edge exporters gain from a weaker rand, which last week broke through R10/$, data released yesterday suggest.
view article

1 June 2013

Cipla Medpro buyout offer divides shareholders – Cardiology News

State tenders are becoming a major source of revenue for local drugs firm Cipla Medpro South Africa (CMSA). The group almost doubled its state business from R372-m to R693-m in the year to December and it expects this to rise to R1-bn in the current financial year.
view article

1 June 2013

Flexible packaging – South African Food Review

Flexible packaging is growing in popularity as it’s light, cheap and easy to transport, but packaging companies have to remain compliant to market demands to stay ahead.
view article

31 May 2013

IIlovo Sugar surges on higher prospects – Farmers Weekly

A weaker rand and prospects of higher sugar production in Malawi and Zambia are behind a surge in the share price of Illovo Sugar, which increased 18% between April and May this year.
view article

31 May 2013

Noncore asset chop? – Financial Mail

BHP Billiton’s aluminium and manganese operations in SA are likely to be next on the block as the group’s new CEO streamlines the portfolio.
view article