During the previous session, Bell Equipment added 1.48% to settle at R13.70 per share after the group issued a trading statement for the year ending 31 December 2017. In it, Bell advised shareholders it currently expects both earnings per share and headline earnings per share to be at least 150 cents. This is much higher than the 39 cents recorded in the previous corresponding period. The uptick is mainly due to an increase in demand in the markets that the group operates in, certain once-off recoveries in 2017 and a recovery in the group’s subsidiary in the DRC. Bell will issue a further trading statement before the release of its results on or around the 16th of March 2018.
Bell Equipment shed 0.47% to close at R10.50 per share after the group released results for the six months ended 30 June 2017. The group reported an 11% increase in revenue to R3.4bn, up from the R3.1bn reported a year ago. This was mainly due to improved trading conditions in most of its global markets. Net profit after tax surged by 86% to R119.6mn, which helped headline earnings per share increase to 119 cents, sharply higher than the 67 cents reported a year ago. The group opted to declare an interim dividend of 20 cents per share, representing an increase of 33% compared to the 15 cent dividend reported in the previous corresponding period.
During the previous session, BEL released its results for the year ended 31 December 2016. In a year which was dominated by the findings of fraud and mismanagement in its subsidiary in the DRC and the weak economic environment, Bell concluded by itself that it did not achieve its goal of delivering financially sustainable results during the period. Overall, the group reported a modest profit of R39mn, down from R142mn previously. Earnings per share came in at 39 cents, down from the 148 cents reported a year ago, while headline earnings per share also slumped to 39 cents, sharply lower than the 138 cents reported in the previous corresponding period.