Vodacom 1st Half Profit Helped by Safaricom Acquisition

By Carlo Martuscelli Features Dow Jones Newswires

Vodacom Group Ltd. (VOD.JO) said Monday that profit grew 6.4% in the half year, buoyed by the acquisition of a stake in Kenyan mobile network operator Safaricom.

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The South Africa-based telecommunications company posted a net profit of 6.85 billion rand ($476.1 million) for the six months ended Sept. 30, compared with ZAR6.44 billion a year earlier. Revenue was up 4.6% at ZAR41.99 billion, it added.

The acquisition of a 34.9% stake in Safaricom in the period contributed to a ZAR349 million profit during the first two months, it said. The increased revenue was attributable to customer gains in South Africa and the increased use of data and microfinancing service M-Pesa internationally.

Vodacom declared an interim dividend of 390 cents per share, down from 395 cents per share last year.

The company said it maintains its target of mid-single digit service revenue growth, as well as earnings before interest and tax growth in the mid-to-high single digits over the next three years.

Write to Carlo Martuscelli at carlo.martuscelli@dowjones.com

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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 13, 2017 01:53 ET (06:53 GMT)