Company news in brief

19 November 2020 | Business

SPAR reports rise in FY earnings

South Africa's SPAR Group yesterday reported an increase of 8.8% in full-year earnings, supported by strong demand for groceries during the coronavirus lockdown period.

The grocery chain and wholesaler, which also sells building materials and medicine, said normalised diluted headline earnings per share (HEPS) rose to 1 262.6 cents in the year to Sept. 30 from 1 160.6 cents a year earlier.

SPAR declared an annual dividend of 865 cents per share, up 8.1% from the previous year.

Group turnover rose 13.5% to R124.3 billion, while profitability increased 15.6%, driven up by a change in the sales mix, as more home consumption boosted higher-margin grocery and fresh categories.

In Ireland, its EUROSPAR outlets offering a convenience range of groceries benefited from locations in neighbourhood stores at a time when shoppers favoured convenience stores over big supermarkets. – Nampa/Reuters

Pfizer ‘didn't delay vaccine results’

Pfizer Inc "didn't conspire with anyone" to delay release of efficacy results for the Covid-19 vaccine it developed with German partner BioNTech SE until after the US presidential election, chief executive Albert Bourla said on Tuesday.

"The elections were always for us an artificial line. It may have been very important for the president but not for us," Bourla said at New York Times event.

"I didn't receive any pressure per se on me to do something that was not appropriate ... I would never do something like that," he said.

Last week, Pfizer and BioNTech said their vaccine was more than 90% effective at preventing Covid-19, based on an initial analysis.

Bourla had originally suggested the companies would have vaccine results by the end of October, but did not release the findings until 9 Nov., nearly a week after the election. – Nampa/Reuters

Exxon discovery not financially viable

An oil exploration campaign led by Exxon Mobil Corp at the Tanager-1 well in the Kaieteur block off Guyana's coast discovered hydrocarbons but it does not appear to be financially viable on its own, a spokesman for the company said on Tuesday.

As part of a consortium with Hess Corp and China's CNOOC Ltd, Exxon has made 18 discoveries totalling some 8 billion barrels of recoverable oil and gas in Guyana's massive Stabroek block, southwest of Kaieteur. Production of light, sweet crude from Stabroek's Liza-1 well began last year.

Exxon is also the operator of Kaieteur and holds a 35% stake in the block, where Cataleya Energy Ltd and Ratio Guyana Ltd each hold 25% stakes. Hess holds the remaining 15%.

Exxon's oil discoveries have the potential to transform the economy of Guyana, a poor South American country of some 750 000 people that has until now depended on agriculture and mining. But other oil explorers' discoveries have not been as promising as Exxon's finds in the Stabroek block.

Westmount Energy Ltd, which holds shares in Cataleya and Ratio, told the London Stock Exchange on Tuesday that preliminary evaluation of the Tanager discovery indicated it contained less-valuable heavy crude. It said it expected the well to be plugged and abandoned in the coming days. – Nampa/Reuters

Walmart forecasts promising holiday season

Walmart Inc said on Tuesday it was optimistic about its holiday sales prospects in a pandemic-ridden year after the big-box retailer beat Wall Street expectations for quarterly results as Americans increasingly shift their spending online.

The surge in demand for essentials seen at the peak of the coronavirus lockdowns has carried into the second half of the year, with consumers relying on its same-day delivery and store pick-up services to buy everything from groceries to sporting goods.

This helped its US e-commerce sales grow 79% with strong results across all channels and helped boost same-store sales and profit margins.

Operating income jumped 22.5% to US$5.79 billion in the third quarter, while Walmart reported adjusted earnings per share of US$1.34 that topped expectations for US$1.18.

Total revenue rose 5.2% to US$134.71 billion, beating estimates for US$132.23 billion. – Nampa/Reuters

Halfords profit jumps on cycling boom

British bicycle and car product retailer Halfords reported a more than doubling in first-half profit, boosted by a Covid-19-driven cycling boom, but cautioned on its second half outlook due to the impact of lockdowns on motor vehicle traffic.

Cycling has increased in popularity as many Britons avoid travelling on public transport during the pandemic and increasingly view it as a health and leisure activity.

Halfords' revenue rose 9.6% to 638.9 million pounds in the six months to Oct. 2, with a 54.4% jump in like-for-like sales of cycling products contrasting with a 23.7% fall in motoring products sales, reflecting less car journeys.

The group made an underlying pre-tax profit of 56 million pounds, up from 25.9 million pounds in the same period last year.

As Halfords is deemed an "essential" retailer by the government, its stores can trade through lockdowns. – Nampa/Reuters

Similar News

 

COMPANY NEWS IN BRIEF

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Business

Exxon and Total in talks ExxonMobil and Total are in negotiations over their massive LNG projects in Mozambique, with each seeking to extract more gas...

Election campaigns boost business

2 days ago - 26 November 2020 | Business

Ndalimpinga Iita - At his business premises in the northern part of Namibia, entrepreneur John David handles various branded promotional items including T-shirts, caps and...

Construction takes plight to MPs

4 days ago - 24 November 2020 | Business

The Construction Industries Federation of Namibia (CIF) recently hosted a series of five business breakfast briefings for members of parliament (MPs). In total, 45 members...

Medical aid shows Covid symptoms

4 days ago - 24 November 2020 | Business

The average claims per medical aid fund beneficiary in Namibia in the first three months of this year was nearly 28% more than in the...

Oshikuku entrepreneur launches biogas production

4 days ago - 24 November 2020 | Business

Parliamentarian, Modestus Amutse launched the Thikamapo Biogas Farming, a small-scale renewable energy entrepreneurial project that aims at driving Namibia to self-reliance in energy production at...

Black Friday madness continues

4 days ago - 24 November 2020 | Business

Julienne van Rooyen - Black Friday is just a few days away, and this year we can probably predict that there will be stricter measures...

COMPANY NEWS IN BRIEF

4 days ago - 24 November 2020 | Business

Prosus' HY earnings surge 29%Technology investment company Prosus NV said yesterday core earnings for the six months ended Sept. 30 surged 29% to US$2.2 billion,...

Company news in brief

4 days ago - 24 November 2020 | Business

Prosus' HY earnings surge 29%Technology investment company Prosus NV said yesterday core earnings for the six months ended Sept. 30 surged 29% to US$2.2 billion,...

Half-a-billion SME loan scheme launched

5 days ago - 23 November 2020 | Business

PHILLEPUS UUSIKU – Government, in partnership with four participating commercial banking institutions and with the financial support of the Bank of Namibia (BoN), on Friday...

Programme for women entrepreneurs launched

5 days ago - 23 November 2020 | Business

The Academy for Women Entrepreneurs Programme in Namibia was officially launched last week by United States Ambassador to Namibia, Lisa Johnson.Johnson said the programme was...

Latest News

Kenya's economic growth to rebound...

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Economics

Duncan MiririKenya's economic growth is expected to bounce back next year, the World Bank said on Wednesday, as it emerges from a projected decline in...

Man kills, buries his partner

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Crime

TUYEIMO HAIDULAOKATANAA 36-year-old man has been arrested in connection with a body discovered on Wednesday at Omayanga village in the Okatana Constituency, Oshana Region. The...

Swapo holds on by fingernails

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Politics

TOIVO NDJEBELAWINDHOEKSwapo continued from where it left off with its downward spiral in last year's election by having its hold onto key constituencies and local...

Iipinge taps out

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Politics

JEMIMA BEUKESWINDHOEKOutgoing Walvis Bay Urban constituency councillor Knowledge Iipinge, who has conceded to Independent Patriots for Change (IPC) candidate Florian Donatus Tegako, says his work...

Nigerians to slide into further...

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Economics

Camille Malplat and Louise Dewast More than 200 million Nigerians will slide further into poverty as the coronavirus pandemic has sent oil prices tumbling and...

Hit the ground running

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Opinion

At the time of penning this down yesterday, the tabulation of election results was still under way. It didn’t look like a good day at...

Auto Sueco gunning the future...

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Politics

OGONE TLHAGEwindhoekFrom its humble beginnings in 2004, Auto Sueco Namibia is now a reckoned force in the Extra heavy and heavy commercial vehicle market with...

Ivory Coast raises 1 billion...

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Economics

Ivory Coast's Eurobond sale this week, sub-Saharan Africa's first of the pandemic era, raised 1 billion euros (US$1.19 billion) and was five times oversubscribed, the...

Open defecation remains a problem

1 day - 27 November 2020 | Health

ELLANIE SMITWINDHOEKIt is estimated that 14% of Namibians living in urban areas practise open defecation, while 77% of people living in rural areas do the...

Load More