Significant results for Trustco in Namibia
The Trustco Group Holdings Ltd, which was the first company to list on the Africa Board of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) in February 2009, has again delivered a strong performance in the 12 months to 31 March 2011. This is despite southern Africa’s slow emergence from the global recession, historical low interest rates and severe flooding in northern Namibia. Profit after tax rose by 38% to N$190 million while headline earnings grew by 55% to N$132 m compared to the previous review period ending 31 March 2010.
This financial period also marked Trustco Mobile’s first contribution to Group profits with the company adding N$23 million to net profit after tax. Desnei Leaf Camp, Head of Corporate Strategy, explained that the 2011 financial period has been a momentous one for this new enterprise.
“On October 7, 2010, EcoLife, a partnership between Trustco Mobile, First Mutual Life Assurance Company and Econet Wireless, was launched all across Zimbabwe. This marked the second step in Trustco’s African expansion beyond Namibia.
“With 1.6 million customers registered across Zimbabwe by 31 March 2011, Trustco Mobile anticipates a rapid increase in subscribers as discussions with telecommunication operators and financial service providers develop into new business opportunities across Africa,” said Leaf-Camp.
Referring to the Group’s future outlook MD Van Rooyen said the availability of term debt will support growth of the microfinance book along with the anticipated sales of Lafrenz industrial property. “With Trustco Mobile now well proven and accepted in the mobile and insurance markets, growth of this segment is expected to significantly increase and pave the way for the expansion of Trustco’s other products and service offerings into the rest of Africa.”
An interim dividend of 1.5 cents per share was paid on 27 of January 2011. A final dividend payment will be considered during the June 2011 Trustco Board meeting.
Trustco with its core activities in micro insurance and micro finance is primarily a diversified financial services company serving the lower end of the consumer market. Through the use of technology, affordable and appropriate products and services, Trustco is able to better service the mass market, where access to finance and insurance remains limited, the Group stated.