Karachi Electric's Net Loss Narrows as Lower Power Theft Increased Revenue

Karachi Electric Supply Co., the supplier of power to Pakistan’s largest city, said its full-year net loss narrowed after higher tariffs increased revenue and the company curbed theft.

The utility lost 14.6 billion rupees ($171.3 million), or 0.74 rupee a share, in the year ended June 30 compared with 15.5 billion rupees, or 1.18 rupees, a year earlier, Karachi Electric said in a statement to the stock exchange today. Revenue rose to 103.9 billion rupees from 85.2 billion rupees.

The company ran a public campaign against electricity theft this year and higher tariffs also helped increase revenue, said Muniba Saeed, a research analyst at Invest Capital & Securities Ltd. in Karachi.

Demand for energy in Pakistan is three times supply and daily electricity outages have forced textile and engineering factories to shut and caused riots across the country. Karachi Electric needs to add plants, replace decrepit cables and cut power theft to end blackouts that hit as much as 67 percent of the city’s population.

The utility’s shares, which have fallen 19.6 percent this year, rose 1.9 percent, to 2.13 rupees as of 9:13 a.m. local time on the Karachi Stock Exchange.

The company plans to offer 39 right shares for every 500 ordinary shares held at 3.50 rupees a share, a premium of 64 percent to the current market price, according to the statement. The utility will use the funds to increase its capacity to produce power and repair its transmission and distribution network, it said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Farhan Sharif in Karachi at fsharif2@bloomberg.net.

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