BAT Kenya H1 pretax profit up 11 pct on higher sales
NAIROBI, July 14
NAIROBI, July 14 (Reuters) - British American Tobacco Kenya posted a 11 percent jump in first half pretax profit to 2.2 billion shillings ($25.24 million) due to higher sales and prices.
The region's biggest cigarette maker maintained its interim dividend at 3.50 shillings per share compared to the same period last year, it said in a statement seen by Reuters on Sunday.
BAT Kenya, a unit of London-listed British American Tobacco , reported a rise of 4 percent in revenue for the six months to June, which countered lower semi-processed leaf sales.
Net revenue was flat at 9 billion shillings, offset by excise duty and value added tax.
Cost controls in the manufacturing process had buoyed the earnings, BAT said.
"Profits continue to be positively impacted by the underlying savings on the cost of operations," the company said.
Finance costs fell by 35 percent, reflecting the lower interest rates relative to the same period last year.
Kenya's central bank held its main lending rate at 8.5 percent on Tuesday, saying it needed to allow previous rate cuts to filter through. The benchmark rate was unchanged at 18 percent for the first half of last year.
BAT said it was, together with authorities, fighting counterfeit cigarettes in the region, to help shore up revenue.
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