September 7, 2018 / 6:23 AM / 9 months ago

UPDATE 1-S.Africa's ARM full-year profit soars 50 pct on debt restructuring

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JOHANNESBURG, Sept 7 (Reuters) - African Rainbow Minerals (ARM) said on Friday full-year profit surged 50 percent, lifted by gains from debt restructuring in its coal division and higher commodity prices.

The South African diversified metals company said headline earnings per share (HEPS) for the year ended June 30, 2018 climbed to 2,526 cents per share from 1,684 cents a year ago.

Headline EPS is the most widely watched profit measure in South Africa which strips out certain one-off items.

Gains from coal debt restructuring stood at 977 million rand ($63.87 million), 23 percent of the group’s headline earnings, the company said.

ARM and Glencore South Africa completed restructuring of 3.98 billion rand worth of debt owed by ARM coal along with 1.83 billion rand owed by the Participative Business Council to ARM coal in June.

“ARM coal’s attributable headline earnings increased to 1.5 billion rand mainly due to the debt restructuring. Earnings have improved due to the average realised U.S. dollar export prices being 22 percent higher compared with a year-ago period,” the company added.

ARM declared a final dividend of 750 cents and full-year dividend of 1,000 cents per share.

($1 = 15.2962 rand)

Reporting by Patricia Aruo, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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