Bidvest anticipates headline earnings per share (HEPS) for the six months ended December 31  2008 to be down 9% on the previous interim period, although earnings per share (EPS) are anticipated to be up by 9%.

The decline in headline earnings is due to the expensing of R165-million in closure and reorganisation costs in certain operations within motor retail and the UK food service and ontime automotive businesses. All other businesses in the group performed in line with expectation.
Net of tax these costs amount to 40 cents per share. Therefore, without these closure and rationalisation costs HEPS would have decreased by 1% on the previous interim period.
According to a statement from the company, these actions were deliberately taken to put the group in a stronger position at a time of uncertainty and worldwide economic recession.
"Difficult times provide opportunity and Bidvest is alert to the potential this offers," the statement reads