Tuesday, August 19, 2008

AK "average" at 38%; TPS unsurprisingly down

AccessKenya announced distinctly average first half. Although sales were up 76%, cost of sales (which in its case would presumably be bandwidth) was up by a humongous 160%. Financing (basically interest charges on loans and overdrafts also increased by Ksh16m). Overall PBT grew by 39%. Removing the effects of the first two months but adding introduction of residential broadband and in an exponentially growing industry, the numbers are distinctly average. One wonders if AK will do a "ScanGroup" ahead of the introduction of undersea cable. My reasoning is that cash-rich businesses will do well in grabbing market share especially the crucial residential and small business sector and unless AK wants to come back to the market and do a rights issue, I don't think the Ksh400m it raised last year will go far...I've got it as a hold or wait and see counter.

TPS' numbers were not surprising. Most hotels had 20% occupancy rate in Jan/Feb and even March for some. Given that most of its clientele is still very upmarket, the results are very much in line and the shareprice for the last 2/3 months has moved to reflect that. Its still a good medium/long-term buy because if Serena can't manage in this industry nobody can.

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