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Grindrod Earnings Rise as Income From Freight Services Jumps

Sept. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Grindrod Ltd., Africa’s biggest shipping company, said first-half earnings rose 29 percent led by its freight services division.

Headline earnings per share for the six months ended June advanced to 76.2 cents, excluding one-time items, from 58.9 cents a year earlier, the company said in a statement today.

Earnings from trading activities at the Durban-based company’s freight services unit rose 75 percent to 300 million rand ($30 million). Grindrod plans to spend 1.14 billion rand in the second half to expand terminal capacity, improve rail infrastructure and buy locomotives and ships, according to the statement.

“Within the Freight Services division, Ports, Terminals and Rail reported exceptional growth in profits and expanded operational capacity,” the company said.

Grindrod shares have gained 47 percent this year, the ninth best-performer of the 165-member FTSE/JSE Africa All Share Index. The stock rose 4 percent at close on Aug. 30 to 23.29 rand, valuing the company at 14.1 billion rand.

The interim dividend for the period rose 14 percent to 20 cents, Grindrod said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kamlesh Bhuckory in Johannesburg at kbhuckory@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Simon Thiel at sthiel1@bloomberg.net

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