MTN buoyed by anticipated leap in first-half earnings

MTN Group expects first-half gross sales to double, beating analyst estimates, the corporate stated on Friday, sending its shares up greater than 7%.

The telecoms sector has skilled a spike in community knowledge visitors as tens of millions of South Africans had been pressured to work and entertain themselves from dwelling after the federal government imposed a lockdown from the tip of March to curb the unfold of the brand new coronavirus.

Nevertheless, the nation’s largest cell operator by subscribers additionally benefited from foreign-exchange positive aspects, it stated with out elaborating.

The group estimates headline earnings per share (HEPS), which strips out sure one-off objects and is the primary revenue measure in South Africa, to be up not less than 195 cents at greater than 390 cents for the six months to June 30, towards analyst expectation for HEPS of 271 cents.

Shares within the firm jumped 7.7% to R64.49 by 0801 GMT, heading in the right direction for his or her highest day by day acquire in three weeks.

“The market was very nervous concerning the barely excessive ranges of debt at MTN and doubtlessly the affect of the coronavirus, however it seems like they’re monitoring effectively forward of the numbers that we had been anticipating,” stated Nadim Mohamed, a associate at First Avenue Funding Administration.

Considering a price-to-earnings ratio of lower than eight occasions, with a powerful dividend, the inventory is doubtlessly undervalued, he added.

The corporate, which reviews outcomes on August 6, additionally stated it expects a rise of not less than 140% in first-half earnings per share, which embrace positive aspects on the disposal of the ATC Uganda and ATC Ghana tower joint ventures.

Rival Vodacom Group on Thursday reported a 7.6% rise in first-quarter group service income, buoyed by sturdy demand for voice, knowledge and monetary companies in South Africa throughout the lockdown.

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