Balwin comes through on dividend


Balwin comes through on dividend

Published Date: 2020-10-13 | Source: Stephen Gunnion | Author: Stephen Gunnion

Balwin comes through on dividend

The property developing is paying its final dividend for 2020 alongside its interim dividend due to higher cash resources.

Balwin Properties has reported a sharp slide in first-half earnings after construction of its sectional title apartments ground to a halt at the height of the Covid-19 lockdown. Still, it's paying an interim dividend as well as its final dividend from last year, which it deferred to preserve cash resources.

The residential property developer said no construction activity took place from 26 March until the easing the lockdown restriction to level 3 on 1 June. Even then, the start-up was conducted on a phased basis in line with national regulations. In total, it lost about three months of work. It still managed to sell 350 properties during the nine-week lockdown period through an online sale platform that it will continue to use as part of its new sales strategy. Despite the 275 reduction in interest rates over the course of the year, it said market conditions remain tough so it is also continuing with marketing campaigns to draw customers. Healthy margins had enabled it to reduce selling prices where necessary.

Over the six months to end-August, it handed over 896 apartments, a 32% reduction from last year. It pre-sold 1,667 apartments beyond the reporting period that aren't recorded in its interim numbers.

Revenue fell by 35% and profit more than halved to R81 million. That left earnings and headline earnings per share 56% lower at 17c per share. Its net asset value rose 9% over the period to 631c per share.

At the end of August, Balwin had cash on hand of R428 million, R154 million higher than a year earlier. That was boosted by the R68.5 million final dividend it held back on paying. It's declared an interim dividend of 19.6c, which includes last year's final dividend. Last year's interim dividend amounted to 11.7c.

Balwin said it was optimistic about the opportunities that had arisen from the recently-gazetted strategic integrated projects (SIPs). Earlier this month, President Cyril Ramaphosa unveiled its Mooikloof Mega-City development east of Pretoria, a public-private collaboration with a total project value of over R84 billion.

Balwin's shares closed 0.2% up at R4.21 yesterday.

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