Cambria revenue up 48pc

HARARE - Cambria Africa (Cambria)’s revenue surged 48 percent to $12 million in the year to December 2012 from $8,1 million recorded prior year.

The AIM-listed investments group said the performance was driven by new strategic initiatives.

Cambria, formerly Lonzim, last year instigated a series of changes that included focus on its four strongest units.

During the period under review, the group’s gross profit increased by 54 percent to $6,8 million, up significantly from $4,4million in December 2011.

Edzo Wisman, Cambria’s chief executive, said a total $19,6 million was written off in the calendar year.

“This has resulted in an underlying loss of $5,2 million, which is in line management’s expectations,” he said adding  that the development has left Cambria with net assets of $23,3 million, which is 55 percent less than in August 2011.

“Cambria’s assets, following the various write-offs undertaken during the period under review, are almost entirely tangible ($33 million or 94 percent),” said Wisman.

At unit level, Cambria’s four core businesses appear to be performing well, with the chemical distribution firm Millchem and the money transfer business Payserv showing year-on-year increases in gross profit, up 91 percent and 64 percent respectively.

Overall the four core business units’ revenues grew organically by 52 percent while gross profits were up 54 percent.

“The continued high organic growth rates are an indication of the solid position each business has in Zimbabwe,” said Wisman.

The group’s hospitality unit, Vumba-based Leopard Rock Hotel contributed $2,9 million to the total revenue.

Wisman said when compared to last year, Leopard Rock Hotel saw occupancies of 46 percent up from 38 percent recorded in 2011, showing an increase of 21 percent.

Average room rates decreased by six percent to $111 from $117 in the prior year.

During the period, Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR) increased to $51 from $44, an increase of 16 percent.

Cambria has meanwhile begun to push into new territories, with two business units so far targeting expansions into Zambia.

The company also gave investors another indication that it is now reviewing possible “strategic alternatives” to unlocking the inherent value in its business. And this could potentially involve the sale of certain assets.

Early last month, Cambria agreed a debt deal with its major shareholder, and principle creditor, to extend its lending facility by $1,5 million to $4,5 million to help facilitate this expansion.

The funds will be used to launch the group’s fast growing associate Millchem in Zambia.

It follows Payserv’s move to establish an office in Lusaka.The group’s Vumba-based Leopard Rock Hotel contributed $2,9 million to total revenue. - John Kachembere

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