Al Noor Hospitals’s first-half profit slips despite rise in patient numbers

Al Noor Hospitals Group’s first-half earnings dipped on higher depreciation costs despite an increase in revenue.

The Abu Dhabi-based company posted an 8.5 per cent rise in revenue to US$244 million from $224.8m for the same period last year. That was thanks to a 13 per cent rise in outpatient volumes and a 7 per cent increase in inpatient numbers.

The London-listed group also highlighted the increasing revenue contribution from its Al Madar Medical Centre network subsidiary, acquired in 2013.

But underlying net profit slid to $44.9m from $45.4m last year because of what Al Noor said were “higher depreciation costs arising from our focused plan of investment in growth initiatives”.

Nevertheless, Al Noor announced an interim dividend of 4.1 pence a share, up from 3.7 pence last year.

Al Noor said it was expecting to achieve “slightly higher growth in revenue and earnings” during the second half of the year, although margins would be hit for the rest of 2015 by the opening of new outpatient medical centres in Sharjah and Al Ain, and the continuingexpansion of its hospital on Khalifa Street in Abu Dhabi.

“Trading in the second half of the year has started in line with our expectations, and we expect to deliver additional growth in earnings from our recent investments in infrastructure and equipment in our hospitals and higher patient volumes at our newest medical centres,” said Ronald Lavater, Al Noor’s chief executive.

The company’s shares rose 2.51 per cent to £8.57 yesterday.

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