Masimba back in the black

HARARE - Diversified group Masimba Holdings (Masimba) is now back in the black after recording a $111 000 after tax profit for the half year to June from a loss position of $353 000 buoyed by improved business from the mining sector.

Group chairman Gregory Sebborn yesterday said while the country’s political and economic environment remained uncertain, the company was in a drive to ramp up production and take advantage of local and regional business.

“The value and growth strategy being implemented throughout the group has begun to bear fruits with revenue for the six months increasing 106 percent to $8,5 million from $4,1 million.

“Due to various cost containment measures and value engineering processes, the group recorded an overhead to turnover ratio of 14 percent, resulting in significantly improved Ebitda at $633 561 compared to a loss of $119 567 incurred in comparative period,” Sebborn said.

Masimba — which has over the years benefited from several lucrative government projects such as the upgrading of Bulawayo’s international airport and construction of toll gates — currently has limited exposure to government contracts.

“We are mostly confined to retentions than anything else,” he said adding, that government had settled its $5 million debt for previous works done.

The company’s costs to turnover ratio improved from 37 percent to 14 percent as a result of cost containment measures and improved efficiencies.

Earnings per share improved to 0,05 cents from -0,15 cents previously.

The board declared a special cash dividend of 0,27 cents per share and paid about $500 000 to shareholders in July.

Sebborn said share profits from the joint venture, Reinforcing Steel Zimbabwe, had improved during the half year from $10 139 to $37 589.

Cash generated from operations in the period under review stood at $321 510 lower than the $573 993 recorded prior comparable period.

This comes as the diversified group’s loss for the year ended December 2015 widened to $1,1 million from $552 423 the year before on the back of depressed demand, with Sebborn saying  the company’s turnover had also declined from $14,8 million to $10 million during the year.

During the full year, decline in the turnover was a reflection of the depressed built environment that prevailed in the country particularly in the first half of the year, according to officials.

The group successfully completed the unbundling of its manufacturing unit during the period under review resulting in the listing of Proplastics Limited on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange.

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