VENTURES AFRICA – An investment gone wrong, as well as project delays, have cost Infrastructure Company TransCentury a year of loss as the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE)-listed company recorded its first ever loss. It reported a Sh2.3 billion net loss for the full year to December as delayed projects and a paper loss from its recent sale of a 34 percent stake in Rift Valley Railways (RVR) ate into its Sh11.8 billion earnings for the year.
The company, whose interests include power, transport and engineering in the Sub-Saharan Africa region, had last year sold its stake in Rift Valley Railways (RVR) to Egyptian private equity firm, Citadel. Although it recouped all the Sh3.8 billion invested in RVR, it is believed to have been sold below its fair value.
“2014 was a challenging year for the Group, which resulted in TransCentury making an operating loss for the first time in its history,” said Gachao Kiuna, TransCentury’s chief executive officer. “The exit from RVR was a bold decision and impacted negatively on our performance but has allowed us to redeploy significant capital recovered from the investment to kick start our growth strategy.”
TransCentury, which has substantial interests in key sectors like power generation and infrastructure, said its revenues in the engineering division dropped 36 percent due to delayed projects which commenced this year. The company reported a net profit of Sh626.4 million for the full year to December 2013, representing a decline 15.4 percent from Sh740.6 million reported the previous year.