African Sun Excels on ZSE
By Allan Mbotshwa
African Sun Limited excelled on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange by recording an upward gain in revenue of ZW$ 1 648 618 661 reflecting a 242% growth.
In the same trading period in the prior year; the Group recorded ZW$ 482 721 327, mainly attributed to the effects of the covid-19 pandemic.
The improved performance was mainly due to an increase in occupancies and cost-saving initiatives implemented by the Group.
The Group’s occupancy levels for each of the three months ended 31 March 2022 were consistently better compared to the same period in 2019, the latter year being the last normal trading year before the Covid-19 outbreak.
The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on foreign arrivals continued into 2022, although a notable recovery relative to the comparable period last year.
Indicative data shows that there was a 93% increase in tourist arrivals from 65 882 recorded during the first quarter (Q1) of 2021 to 126 955 recorded during the quarter ended 31 March 2022.
The hospitality segment contributed 94% to Group revenue, whilst the real estate segment contributed the balance of 6%.
The hotel’s revenue increased by 221%, largely influenced by conference business during the period.
City hotels (including the Troutbeck Resort) recorded 56% (2021: 24%) occupancies whilst the Resort hotels, which have not fully recovered from the impact of Covid-19, achieved an occupancy level of 21% (2021: 5%).
The Group is currently finalizing the acquisition of the remaining Dawn Properties Limited issued share capital and will commence the full integration of the business as soon as the transaction is completed.
Total assets as at 31 March 2022 remained relatively flat at ZWL26.4 billion compared with the December 2021 position.
The Group closed the first quarter of 2022 with a debt-free position, buttressed by a healthy cash and cash equivalents position of ZWL1.55 billion. Subsequent to 31 March 2022.
The Group paid a dividend of ZWL116, 151, 461 plus USD505, 064 with respect to the year ended 31 December 2021.
Equity at ZWL22.3 billion remained flat compared with the December 2021 position.
“The Group is encouraged by the resumption and increase of international flights into the Victoria Falls destination. Notably, Eurowings Discover airline launched its maiden flight into Victoria Falls from Frankfurt, while Fast Jet launched a direct flight to Kruger, Mpumalanga (South Africa).”
“Whilst the resumption of international flights to the destination has been constrained by relatively low load factors, the Group anticipates that this will improve as the year progresses,” said Group secretary Mr Venon Musimbe.