Imperial Holdings says it is still on the road to doubling core profit from its rest-of-Africa businesses, but that it is taking longer than expected. "We are getting there — we are on track," CEO Mark Lamberti said on Tuesday, after presenting the group’s interim results to December 2016. Group revenue was up 2% to R61bn, while operating profit rose 4% to R3.2bn. Cash generated by operations was R4.3bn, but headline earnings per share slipped 15% as the interim cash dividend fell 14% to 320c per share. The logistics and vehicles group said falling commodity demand, low oil prices and the subsequent effect on currencies and private consumption had slowed the growth rate in its African businesses. The region, excluding SA, generated R5.7bn, or 9%, of turnover, and R461m or 16% of operating profit, in the six-month period. Meanwhile, the trading environment in SA remained challenging where 59% of group revenue and 64% of operating profit was generated. Imperial said slow economic reco...

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