MTN has told shareholders to expect an increase in earnings per share (EPS) of at least 345 cents or 140% in a trading statement published on Friday 24 July.
This represents an expected EPS of more than 592 cents for the six-month period ended 30 June 2020, compared to the EPS of 247 cents for the six-month period ending 30 June 2019.
Headline earnings per share (HEPS) are expected to amount to 195 cents, or 100%, across the same two periods – growing from 195 cents for the period ending 30 June 2019 to 390 cents for the period ending 30 June 2020.
“EPS includes the benefit from gains amounting to 341 cents on the disposal of the ATC Uganda and ATC Ghana tower joint ventures as announced in March 2020,” MTN said.
“HEPS benefited from non-operational items for the six months ended 30 June 2020 totalling approximately 50 cents per share (June 2019: 55 cents negative impact on HEPS) of which more than half related to foreign exchange gains.”
Finalising its results
MTN is finalising its results for the six month period ending 30 June 2020, and is required by the JSE to provide the above information ahead of its official results announcement on 6 August.
“The JSE Listings Requirements specify that issuers must publish a trading statement as soon as they are satisfied that a reasonable degree of certainty exists that the financial results for the period to be reported upon next will differ by at least 20% from the financial results for the previous corresponding period,” said MTN.
It said it will provide another update on its expected EPS and HEPS growth ranges once it has more certainty on these figures.
It also cautioned that the information it has provided on expected EPS and HEPS has not been reviewed or reported on by its external auditors.
MTN share prices increased by over 5.5% on Friday following this announcement.