In 2009, telecommunications specialist TeleMasters ranked in the top 10 of the 2009 Sunday Times Top 100 performing shares. The company has continued its strong showing in 2010, releasing another set of positive results for the quarter ending 31 December 2009.
A snapshot of the company's results includes:
* Revenue up 10% against comparative period;
* Cash flows from operating activities up 43% against comparative period;
* Net asset value (NAV) per share up by 35% since the end of the comparative quarter;
* Net tangible asset per share up 57%;
* Increase in gross profit of 23%;
* EPS steady at 7.57c per share.
“We have been successful in optimising revenue streams through our revenue enhancement programme, which means we are able to continue on our positive trajectory despite the sluggish international market,” says Mario Pretorius, TeleMasters CEO. “Our business structure allows for the ongoing harnessing of value through the provision of a high quality service – by ensuring, in other words, that our clients enjoy the most efficient telecommunication solutions for their businesses. I believe this structural integrity is reflected in the results.”
TeleMasters remains cash positive, with a good liquidity position. Operating expenses have, however, increased by 45%. Key factors in this regard were:
* An increase in depreciation of R252 293 due to further capital investments in property, plant and equipment of R3 560 190;
* Repairs and maintenance costs for the period up by R131 747 due to a higher asset base;
* Rented costs associated with additional office space (necessary to accommodate the increased staff compliment and operations) saw an increase in occupancy costs of R209 413;
* The company's higher staff compliment also saw employee costs increase by R638 421. In addition to salary expenses, the company's policy to pay full medical aid contributions for all staff in excess of 5 years service contributed to this increase.
* Finance costs increased by 34% over the period, as a result of the fact that the company funds the acquisition of certain property, plant and equipment through finance lease agreements. Total outstanding finance lease liabilities at the end of the period were R5 269 643 (2008: R4 835 061).
“The increase in operating costs reflects our growth and activity across the board.” says Pretorius. “That said, we pay careful attention to ensuring that while operating cost increases are planned for and accommodated, they also remain within a tight structure that continues to support our cash positive position. This is a key strategic factor – our liquidity plays an important role in ensuring we are flexible enough to stay on top of variable market conditions.”
During the first quarter ended 31 December 2008. TeleMasters declared an interim dividend of 4 cents. The Dividend of 16 cents per share paid included this declared dividend and the 12 cent dividend for the prior 12 month period.
The TeleMasters board also recently declared a quarterly interim dividend of 4 cents per share, paid to all shareholders on the share register at close of business Friday, 15 Friday 2010. The board will continue with its policy of declaring quarterly dividends and, over the course of the year, intends maintaining a high dividend policy.
Looking forward, TeleMasters will keep its focus on value in place, says Pretorius.
“We continue to look to grow the value of the service we deliver to our clients, as well as the value inherent in our business model. This focus supports our organic growth strategy very well.”