February 22, 2016 / 8:19 AM / 3 years ago

Sun International first-half profit falls on slow growth at home

JOHANNESBURG, Feb 22 (Reuters) - South African hotel chain Sun International reported a 19 percent fall in half-year profit on Monday, in line with its own forecast, blaming flat casino revenue growth at home for the decline.

Sun International said headline earnings per share slid to 332 cents for the six months to the end of December.

Headline earnings per share is South Africa’s main profit gauge and excludes certain one-off and non-trading items.

Poor economic conditions in South Africa resulted in revenue growth at casinos of only 0.6 percent, which Sun International said was well below inflation in the country where it still earns 80 percent of its revenue.

The company said its Monticello asset in Chile helped offset poor growth at home.

Sun International is also evaluating its 536 million rand ($34.8 million) investment in Nigeria, where some of its employees have been detained and authorities are investigating one of its investments, the company said.

Shares in Sun International were down 0.65 percent at 70.90 rand by 0745 GMT, underperforming a 0.57 percent gain in the Johannesburg Securities Exchange’s All-share index.

$1 = 15.3998 rand Reporting by Thekiso Anthony Lefifi; editing by David Clarke

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