Johannesburg - South Africa's second-biggest hospital group
Medi-Clinic Corporation [JSE:MDC] posted a flat full-year profit in line with consensus,
as a robust performance at home was offset in part by the stronger rand.
Medi-Clinic, which also runs hospitals in Namibia,
Switzerland and the Middle East, said on Tuesday diluted headline earnings per
share totalled 176.3 cents in the year to end-March from 172c a year earlier.
A Reuters poll of six analysts had expected headline EPS to be 176c.
While demand for private healthcare has increased in South
Africa due to a rising middle class, Medi-Clinic faces stiff competition in
its home market from rivals Life Healthcare Group Holdings [JSE:LHC] and Netcare [JSE:NTC].
The company has said it sees fewer growth opportunities in
the Africa's biggest economy. Last year it launched a R1.4bn rights issue to
help fund expansion in Switzerland, where it runs the biggest private hospital
Medi-Clinic said revenue rose 9% to R18.6bn with its
southern African unit, lifting sales by 12% while the unfavourable currency
swings hit revenue from its Swiss and Middle Eastern businesses
A stronger rand eats into overseas profits when those
earnings are brought home.
Shares in Medi-Clinic, which are little changed so far this
year, were up 1.45% at R29.31 by 12:26 GMT on Tuesday, outpacing rivals Netcare, which
inched up 0.43%, and Life Healthcare, which lost 1.05%.