Savola posts $133m Q4 earnings
Riyadh, January 18, 2012
Saudi Savola Group posted a fourth-quarter net profit of 498.6 million riyals ($132.95 million), beating analyst forecasts, helped by a one-time gain from an asset sale.
The earnings compared to a net profit of just 2 million riyals a year earlier, when provisions for loss-making units and asset write-offs almost wiped out quarterly profit at the Saudi food company.
Savola attributed the increase in earnings to a turnaround in the profitability of overseas food operations, gaining a larger share of the retail market and a capital gain of 153 million riyals from a land sale, according to a bourse statement.
Two analysts polled by Reuters had forecast earnings of 363 million and 465 million riyals. Operating profit rose to 587.5 million riyals in the quarter, up 32.7 percent from a year earlier.
In a separate statement, Savola forecast a first-quarter net income of 220 million riyals before capital gains. The company proposed to pay a cash dividend of 0.55 riyal per share, another bourse statement said. - Reuters