Vodacom eyes big turnaround

2010-10-19 16:35

Johannesburg - Vodacom Group [JSE:VOD], the mobile operator majority owned by Britian's Vodafone, said it expects first-half profit to rise by up to 40%, after the previous year's results were hit by one-time charges.

Vodacom, the largest mobile phone company in South Africa, said on Tuesday it expects headline earnings per share of between 285 cents and 307 cents for the six months to end-September.

That compares to 219 cents in the same period a year earlier, when results were hit by a revaluation of financial instruments and the reversal of a deferred tax asset.

While Vodacom is the dominant player in South Africa, it is overshadowed across the continent by rival MTN Group [JSE:MTN].

It also faces new competition from former shareholder Telkom [JSE:TKG], which this month launched its own mobile business.

Vodacom said it expects to report first-half results on or around November 8.

Shares of the company were up 1.29% at R68.52 as of 12:59 pm, outperforming a flat Top-40 index.

Vodacom's shares are up about 20% so far this year, outperforming the Top-40 and MTN, both of which are up about 8%.