JSE-listed energy investment firm Hulisani increased its dividends for the financial year ended February 28, to R36.9-million, from R18.1-million in the prior financial year.
This was on the back of 60% higher dividends received from the Kouga Wind Farm, at R24-million, while those from RustMo1 Solar Farm were in line with expectation, at R12.3-million.
Hulisani generates dividend income on its investments in energy projects ranging from gas, solar photovoltaic, concentrated solar, wind and hydro in sub-Saharan Africa.
The company’s key portfolio currently includes interests in GRI Wind Steel, Kouga Wind Farm, RustMo1 Solar Farm and the Avon and Dedisa peaking power plants.
CEO Marubani Raphulu said Hulisani’s imperative was to achieve a level of scale in terms of its core portfolio.
“Our current projects pipeline in the secondary market is about R1.2-billion in relation to South African operating and revenue generating energy assets. GRI, which manufactures wind towers, was negatively affected by the delayed signing of power purchase agreements (PPAs). Since their conclusion, however, new wind tower orders have significantly improved GRI’s prospects.
“Further, greater energy policy certainty is encouraging and we anticipate that our investments in advanced projects in the renewable energy sector will benefit from further conclusion of PPAs as well as upcoming Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme and Gas to Power Programme projects,” he explained.
While net cash from group operating activities for the period was positive, certain accounting factors contributed to losses. Hulisani’s operating costs increased to R73-million, compared with R57-million in the prior year, largely owing to timing considerations.
Group cash costs rose to R48-million, owing to salaries and nonrecurring investment-related consultancy fees. The net cash from operating activities amounted to R11-million.
Additionally, increased investment activity at the holding company resulted in higher operating expenses of nearly R34-million. The operating results before noncash expenses amounted to R3-million. Noncash expenses included impairment losses, depreciation and expected credit loss provisions.
Operating costs included nonrecurring expenses of R9.4-million, consisting mainly of advisory and legal fees relating to the year’s investment activities. The operating results before noncash expenses and nonrecurring expenses amounted to R12.4-million.
Raphulu said the company would continue to build capability and pursue opportunities in the renewable energy sector to enhance returns, while continually assessing various forms of funding to enable the conclusion of the focus projects in its pipeline.