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South Africa’s WG Wearne registers increased profits

WG Wearne, one of South Africa’s oldest suppliers of materials to the building and construction industry, has announced its full year financial results.

The group posted a total comprehensive profit of US$1.2m for the year ended February 28, a turnaround from the US$1.6m loss posted in the previous year with the group revenue increasing by 16% to US$43.1m. The largest contributor to the increase in turnover was the company’s ready-mix concrete division, which increased its revenue by 20% to US$21.5m.

The group’s aggregates division remained a consistent contributor to the group’s turnover with a 10% increase in revenue, while the precast division recorded a 44% increase in revenue.

WG Wearne also reported a headline loss a share of 6.07c for the year under review, compared with 6.15c in 2013, and diluted earnings a share from continuing operations of 3.69c, as opposed to a loss of 6.49c for the previous year. The net asset value a share increased to 17.91c during the year. Meanwhile, the group’s gross profit margins were maintained at around 20% even though WG Wearne had increased its market share significantly.

The company also noted that its strategy of focusing on key operational areas and monitoring of individual business units continued to drive its turnaround initiatives, with the constant monitoring having delivered improvements in almost all of the individual operating units despite high competition, adverse weather conditions and lower-than-expected government spend on infrastructure.

WG Wearne revealed that it will implement an intensive sales drive in its ready-mix concrete business to gain market share, increase volumes sold and improve on gross profit margins.

Established in 1910, the company was initially involved in the sand and stone business in the small town of Carletonville, near Johannesburg, and the ready-mix division was established in the early 1970’s. Since then, the company has grown into what is now known as The Wearne Group of Companies, supplying the construction industry with a complete building material solution.

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