A sneak peek at companies who had a positive year despite challenges

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Sasfin, Thungela, Naspers and more experienced great results despite economic challenges.

A series of global economic shocks, including the Russia-Ukraine war and new Covid-19 lockdowns in China, have further disrupted supply chains, fuelled inflation, and slowed economic growth.

Despite these challenges, Sasfin, Thungela, Naspers, Aveng and many more managed to receive good results

Sasfin became the biggest winner when it announced a R166.7 million improvement in headline earnings for the year ending 30 June 2022.

Group FD Harriet Heymans (featured) explained that the results are primarily due “to the improvement of the financial services provider’s credit performance [which] enabled a total cash dividend for the financial year of 154.85 cents per share – 18.2 percent higher than the prior year”..

Read more: Harriet Heymans unpacks Sasfin’s R166.7 million improvement in headline earnings

Thungela Resources celebrated a year of being listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. CFO Deon Smith explained that the group was proud that it was able to deliver a solid first set of annual financial results during this time.

After being able to keep up with being on the JSE for a year, the coal miner expected to report robust earnings and cash generation for the six months that ended on 30 June 2022.

Deon said this reflected the company’s ability to mitigate the impact of the continued inconsistent and poor rail performance by Transnet Freight Rail (TFR), which has affected Thungela’s ability to deliver export equity thermal coal to the seaborne market.

Read more: Thungela expects strong results despite rail performance issues, says CFO Deon Smith

Also Celebrating big wins, Aveng this year again celebrated its second consecutive year of profitability, despite facing various challenges in the reporting year. The company saw a revenue of R26.2 billion for the financial year ended 30 June.

“We are pleased with the results in the context of the operating environment. Our people have put in tremendous effort over a challenging year,” said CFO Adrian Macartney.

Adrian explained that Covid-19 remained a challenge throughout the year, particularly in Southeast Asia, where travel restrictions hampered Aveng until April 2022.

He added that the Russian war on Ukraine and Covid-19 also continued to disrupt global supply chains and cost escalations needed to be managed.

Despite these challenges, Adrian explains that the teams in the McConnel Dowell, Moolmans and Trident Steel businesses remained focused on winning work, delivering operationally and controlling costs.

Read more: CFO Adrian Macartney accredits Aveng’s second year of profitability to the effort of its people

Another company that showed true grit this year is Naspers, which announced strong revenue growth and profitability in core operations for the year ending 31 March 2022 despite a global economic downturn – characterised by high inflation and interest rates – leading to reduced activity in e-commerce.

Basil Sgourdos, group CFO, Prosus and Naspers, said, “Ecommerce revenues were up 49 percent and this performance is set against a stand-out performance in the prior year and significant global volatility.

“The macro-economic and severe geopolitical challenges in the second half of the year have presented significant headwinds. But our operations remain strong, and with improved profitability at the core, we are investing to scale into adjacent opportunities across our segments.”

Read more: Naspers operations remain strong, says CFO Basil Sgourdos

Despite macro-economic challenges and volatile market conditions, Sanlam’s solvency has remained strong.

This year was off to a promising start for Sanlam as insurance claims started returning to pre-Covid-19 levels. However, the Russia-Ukraine conflict further disrupted global supply chains and energy markets.

Sanlam CFO Abigail Mukhuba explained that the subsequent inflation surges, central bank responses on interest rates, a huge global stock market correction and the widening of credit spreads have created a new and dangerous macro environment.

Read more: CFO Abigail Mukhuba says Sanlam on strong growth trajectory

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