Niche logistics provider OneLogix Group grew trading profit by 8% in difficult conditions for the six-months ended November 2016.

It said trading conditions would remain tough for all group companies for the foreseeable future, but it was extracting maximum efficiencies from existing businesses.

Group revenue was up 12% in the period, with headline earnings per share rising 1%.

“Five businesses which account for 70% of revenue were affected by [economic] headwinds,” CEO Ian Lourens said on Thursday.

Three businesses in the agricultural sector were directly affected by drought, he said.

Meanwhile, the South African motor vehicle industry had seen a declining trend in sales over the past three-and-a-half years.

That meant that OneLogix Vehicle Delivery Services and OneLogix Commercial Vehicle Delivery Services traded down in line with a contracting and increasingly competitive market, the group said.

But cash generated from operations before net finance costs, taxations and dividends shot up 47%. Lourens said this stemmed from good management of working capital.

The small-cap company also reinstated a dividend for the first time since 2015 after successfully acquiring Vision and Cryogas.

Lourens said in the company's earnings statement that the completion of infrastructure developments and improved prospects for the company were behind the decision to reinstate the dividend, which was 8c per share.

"The strategy of mitigating earnings concentration risk, by more evenly spreading earnings reliance across the group’s logistics market segments, is now entrenched," Lourens said.

Headline earnings per share (HEPS) edged up 1% to 16.5c from the year-earlier period. Excluding retrenchment costs, HEPS would have been up 8%.

With staff writer

OneLogix CEO Ian Lourens speaks to Alishia Seckam about interims results.

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