Discounter Pepkor’s first-half profits rise thanks to Steinhoff settlement

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JOHANNESBURG, May 27 (Reuters)Pepkor Holdings PPHJ.Jowner of discount retailer brands Pep and Ackermans, reported a 28.3% rise in half-year profits on Friday, benefiting from a payout resulting from a global claims settlement by parent company Steinhoff.

Steinhoff International SNHJ.J earlier this year began a series of payouts to shareholders who lost money when Steinhoff shares plunged following the discovery of accounting fraud in 2017.

Pepkor regained its exposure to Steinhoff shares through investment firm Business Venture Investments.

Overall earnings per share reached 91.5 cents in the six months ended March 31, from 71.3 cents a year earlier, while operating profit jumped 19.1% to 5.7 billion. rand ($363.16 million).

On a net basis, the Steinhoff settlement benefited results for the six months to March 31 by 429 million rand or 12 cents per share, Pepkor said.

The retailer, with more than 5,700 stores across Africa, reported revenue growth of 3.3% to R42 billion on the back of a stronger second quarter as budget-conscious shoppers flocked to its discount chains.

($1 = R15.6955)

(Reporting by Nqobile Dludla; ​​Editing by Jacqueline Wong and Jane Merriman)

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