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Bidvest Profit Rises as Acquisitions Help Offset ‘Tough’ Markets

Sept. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Bidvest Group Ltd., South Africa’s second-biggest company by sales, said annual earnings rose 11 percent as acquisitions helped boost sales in its biggest market, outpacing sluggish growth.

Earnings per share for the 12 months ending June rose to 17.23 rand compared with an estimate of 17.62 rand according to a Bloomberg survey of eight analysts, the Johannesburg-based company said in a statement today. Revenue advanced about 20 percent to 183.65 billion rand ($17.24 billion).

Bidvest has interests ranging from food services to pharmaceutical products, with South Africa as its main market. The company, led by Chief Executive Officer Brian Joffe, spent 7.3 billion rand on acquisitions last year, including a stake in Adcock Ingram Holdings Ltd.

“The prospects for the group remain positive, supported by the anticipated benefits arising from the significant acquisitions and investments made over the past year,” the company said. “In South Africa, trading conditions are expected to remain tough, compounded by the impacts of a rising interest rate climate, its impact on consumer demand and low economic growth.”

Bidvest shares have advanced 4.8 percent this year, valuing the company at 93.2 billion rand.

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

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Simon Thiel at sthiel1@bloomberg.net Andrew Noel, Kim McLaughlin

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