News Column

Naspers sees 2 percent contraction in earnings

June 23, 2014

E-commerce and media firm Naspers reported a 2 percent contraction in full-year earnings |after ratcheting up spending on expansion.

Naspers' core headline earnings per share decreased to 2.181 cents from 2.216 cents for the year ended March 31. Polled analysts had forecast they would rise by as much as 15 percent.

Naspers treats core headline earnings, which exclude some one-off items, as the main measure of profit.

Naspers will pay a 425 cents per share dividend, 10 percent higher than the previous year.

The company's revenue grew 26 percent to R62.7 billion while development spending jumped 79 percent to R7.7bn.

The company has been strengthening its e-commerce muscle and in February, plucked the head of its eastern European online marketplace, Bob van Dijk as its new chief executive officer.

Naspers' 33.73 percent stake in Tencent, China's largest listed tech firm with a market value of nearly $140 billion (R15 trillion), is worth nearly as much as Naspers' market value.

The share price gained 16 percent this year, close to R1 270, driving its price earnings ratio to 99 times and making it one of the most expensive stocks on the Johannesburg bourse. - Reuters

Cape Argus

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Source: Cape Argus (South Africa)

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