PPC reports solid improvement


PPC reports solid improvement

Published Date: 2020-12-03 | Source: Stephen Gunnion | Author: Stephen Gunnion

PPC reports solid improvement

The cement producer says after a difficult start to the year due to Covid-19, sales recovered strongly in the second quarter.

PPC's shares rose as much as 16% yesterday after it reported a strong recovery in first half sales and said it was accelerating the sale of PPC Lime after receiving a number of unsolicited approaches for the business.

In a trading statement, the cement producer said it expected revenue for the six months to end-September to be as much as 5% higher than the R4.95 billion reported last year. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), which are seen as an important measure of a company's operating performance, would be 12% to 17% higher than the R868 million reported previously. However, it said earnings and headline earnings per share would be down by 35% to 45%, primarily due to non-cash related items.

The company said it also continued to make good progress with a restructuring and refinancing project aimed at giving it a sustainable capital structure and improving its investment prospects. Debt agreements had been finalised with its SA lenders and it had signed a formal debt standstill agreement with its bankers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). It was actively engaging with the DRC lenders on a detailed restructuring plan.

It had also appointed financial advisors to manage a structured sales process for PPC Lime.

Last month, PPC said it was on track to test investor appetite regarding the recapitalisation of its international operations before the end of the calendar year.

It expects to release its results on 8 December. Its shares closed 14.5% higher at 87c yesterday.

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