RNS Number : 1903O
Kuwait Projects Co. (Cayman)
03 March 2009
KIPCO announces KD 24.1 million
(US$ 87.3 million) profit for 2008
'KIPCO in sound financial position' says company's
Kuwait City, 2nd March, 2009: KIPCO - the Kuwait Projects Company - has announced net profit of KD 24.1 million (US$ 87.3 million), or 21.82 fils (US$ 7.9 cents) per share, for the year ended December 31, 2008, a decrease of 64.1 per cent on the KD 67.2 million (US$ 246.2 million) of normalized profit, or 60.2 fils (US$ 22.1 cents) per share, for 2007.
KIPCO's Board of Directors is recommending a cash dividend of 40 per cent (40 fils per share) for 2008, subject to approval by the company's General Assembly and regulatory authorities. This compares to the 90 per cent (90 fils per share) cash and 10% bonus share dividend made in 2007.
KIPCO said its 2008 results were achieved while applying conservative accounting across Group companies. KIPCO's consolidated accounts include over KD 60 million (US $ 217.4 million) in provisions taken against assets. The results reflect KIPCO's strict financial discipline and its sound financial position in difficult market conditions. KIPCO's 2008 results represent the company's seventeenth consecutive year of profitability.
The normalized profit figure for 2007 excludes the proceeds and other financial benefits taken by the consolidated KIPCO Group from the sale of a controlling stake in Wataniya Telecom and other sales of stakes made by associates and subsidiaries during 2007.
KIPCO's total revenues for 2008 increased by 5.7 per cent compared to the normalized 2007 revenues, to KD 440.3 million (US$ 1.6 billion) from KD 416.6 million (US$ 1.5 billion).
KIPCO posted a 20.9 per cent increase in total consolidated assets for 2008, up to KD 5.2 billion (US$ 18.8 billion) from KD 4.3 billion (US$ 15.8 billion) in 2007.
KIPCO said it had ended 2008 with over KD 100 million (US$ 362.3 million) in liquidity and low leverage consisting mainly of medium term debt. The company has maintained its ratings with Standard & Poors and Moodys, the highest in the MENA region for a private corporate, amid many downgrades in Kuwait and the region.
Commenting on the 2008 results, KIPCO's Vice Chairman, Mr Faisal Al Ayyar, said:
'2008 was clearly a very difficult year for many companies, but KIPCO has done better than most. Our sound financial position is secured by strong discipline, conservative accounting and prudent asset management. We also have ample liquidity that will provide the resources necessary to exploit opportunities as they arise.'
'Despite extremely difficult market conditions, our core businesses performed well. They are underpinned by strong management teams, sound business strategies and careful cost control. Going forward, I expect these companies to continue their long-term value creation for our shareholders and I am very confident our companies will emerge stronger from the current situation.'
'Our dividend distribution reflects the balance we strive for between shareholder expectations, preserving the company's financial health and the investment opportunities we anticipate will occur as the current crisis unfolds.'
- Ends -
Notes to editors:
The 'other sales of stakes made by associates and subsidiaries' within this press release refers to the sale of stakes in United Fisheries of Kuwait and the United Projects Company in 2007. The relevant proceeds from these disposals are excluded in the definition of normalized profit.
The KIPCO Group is one of the biggest diversified holding companies in the Middle East and North Africa, with assets worth more than US$ 24 billion under management or control. The Group has substantial ownership interests in a portfolio of 55 companies operating across 21 countries and employing over 8,000 people. The company's main business sectors are financial services and media. Through the subsidiaries and affiliates of its companies, KIPCO also has interests in Healthcare, Industry, the Management & Advisory sector and Real Estate.
Robert Hipkins KIPCO Group Communications Director +965 6635 6969
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