Full-year earn­ings growth de­clines

The Star Early Edition - - COMPANIES -

LIFE Health­care Group Hold­ings, South Africa’s third-largest pri­vate hos­pi­tal owner, re­ported that full-year earn­ings growth in its home hos­pi­tal mar­ket slowed. Profit at the hos­pi­tals unit rose 11 per­cent to R2.91 bil­lion in the 12 months to Septem­ber ver­sus a 20 per­cent growth a year ear­lier, the company said on Fri­day. Net in­come climbed 58 per­cent to R2.8bn, boosted by a gain from sell­ing Joint Med­i­cal Hold­ings in Fe­bru­ary. The company is try­ing to in­crease profit in In­dia and Poland after sell­ing out of Dur­ban-based Joint Med­i­cal. It bought a majority stake in Scan­med Mul­timedis of Poland in April. Cap­i­tal ex­pen­di­ture in the cur­rent fis­cal year is ex­pected to be R1.55bn and more than 250 ad­di­tional beds are planned. Life Health­care had a gain of R957 mil­lion after sell­ing its 49.3 per­cent stake in Joint Med­i­cal. Paid pa­tient days in­creased 2 per­cent, com­pared with 2.7 per­cent in fis­cal 2013. The company will pay a to­tal div­i­dend of R1.41 a share, an in­crease of 12 per­cent. The shares fell 2.6 per­cent to R41.39 as of 9.35am in Jo­han­nes­burg, eras­ing their gain this year. Larger com­peti­tor Medi­clinic was down by 0.99 per­cent to R94.70 while Net­care shed 0.30 per­cent to R33.70. – Bloomberg

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