* Diluted headline EPS at 82 cents vs 62.9 cents
* Group revenue up 25 percent to 5.7 bln rand
JOHANNESBURG Nov 15 South Africa's Illovo Sugar
Ltd posted a 30 percent rise in first-half earnings on
Thursday as output rose and said it expects solid results ahead.
Illovo, a unit of Associated British Foods, said
diluted headline earnings per share for the six months to
end-September totalled 82 cents, compared with 62.9 cents a year
Headline earnings are the main profit gauge in South Africa
and exclude certain one-off and non trading items.
The firm - Africa's biggest sugar producer with operations
in South Africa, Malawi, Zambia, Swaziland, Tanzania and
Mozambique - said revenue rose 25 percent to 5.7 billion rand
Illovo said full-year sugar output was likely to increase by
as much as 15 percent from the previous season. The company
produced 1.526 million tonnes of sugar last year.
"This increase will be driven by an increase in South
Africa, where a return to more normal growing conditions will
likely produce an increase in cane crushed," it said in a
The company also said a recovery in sales in South Africa
and Tanzania was expected in the second half of the year.
Illovo shares have gained 25 percent so far this year,
compared with a 16 percent rise in the broader All-share index
($1 = 8.9000 South African rand)
(Reporting by Olivia Kumwenda; editing by David Dolan)