SoftBank to book $34 bln gain on Alibaba shares; reduce stake to 14.6%

Article content TOKYO — SoftBank Group Corp on Wednesday said it will book an estimated gain of 4.6 trillion yen ($34.08 billion) on settling prepaid forward contracts using shares in Alibaba Group Holding, reducing its stake to 14.6% from 23.7%. The estimated gain includes a 2.4 trillion yen gain from the revaluation of shares in the Chinese e-commerce giant and a derivative gain of 0.7 trillion yen, SoftBank said in a filing. The transaction “will be able to eliminate concerns about future cash outflows, and furthermore, reduce costs associated with these prepaid forward contracts,” SoftBank said. Article content “These will further strengthen our defense against the severe market environment,” SoftBank added. The Japanese conglomerate on Monday booked a record quarterly net loss due to sliding valuations at the Vision Fund investment arm, with Chief Executive Masayoshi Son pledging to further rein in investment activity and cut costs. The transaction is not expected to result in additional sales of Alibaba shares on the market as the shares were hedged at the time of the original monetisation, SoftBank said. ($1 = 134.9700 yen) (Reporting by Sam Nussey; editing by Andrew Heavens, Jason Neely and Louise Heavens)

Billionaire Birla’s Hindalco Posts Record Profit on Novelis

Breadcrumb Trail Links PMN Business Hindalco Industries Ltd.’s quarterly profit jumped by almost half from a year earlier, underpinned by strong US sales and higher revenue that cushioned the impact of pricier raw materials. Author of the article: Bloomberg News Swansy Afonso Aluminum rolls at a foil mill. Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg Photo by Andrey Rudakov /Bloomberg Article content (Bloomberg) — Hindalco Industries Ltd.’s quarterly profit jumped by almost half from a year earlier, underpinned by strong US sales and higher revenue that cushioned the impact of pricier raw materials. Article content Group net income at the aluminum and copper producer rose to a record 41.2 billion rupees ($518 million) in the three months through June, up 48% from the same quarter last year. That beat analysts’ estimates for a profit of 28.5 billion rupees. Sales climbed 40% from a year earlier to 580.2 billion rupees.  The performance of Hindalco, controlled by billionaire Kumar Mangalam Birla, was aided by aluminum prices that, while falling over the period, were higher than last year. Global supply chain problems persist, including lower output in Europe, where mills are grappling with soaring energy costs.  Hindalco’s US unit Novelis Inc. reported a 32% year-on-year increase in sales and $307 million in net income from continuing operations, it reported last week. The company saw record shipments in North America on strong demand from can manufactures and the automotive sector, although the favorable pricing environment was partly offset by inflationary pressures. Article content Aluminum consumption in India rose 11% in April-June from a year earlier, led by improved demand from sectors like packaging, automotive, building & construction, consumer durables, and electrical, Hindalco said. Copper demand grew by about 47%, it said. The company’s net debt fell 19% from a year earlier to 421.93 billion rupees at the end of June, it said in the earnings presentation. Hindalco’s shares rose as much as 5.5% in Mumbai on Wednesday, and were set for the highest close in three months. There are 23 buy recommendations from analysts on the company, and only one sell, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

South African business confidence index rises in July – SACCI

Article content South African business confidence rose slightly in July, helped by an increase in trade volumes and new vehicle sales, data showed on Wednesday. The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI) monthly business confidence index (BCI) edged up to 110.3 in July from 108.5 in June. “The July 2022 BCI number indicates the business climate is gradually returning to normality,” SACCI said in a statement, after Africa’s most industrialized nation was dealt a severe blow by the COVID-19 pandemic, riots in 2021 and damaging floods in April this year. Despite the pickup in the headline BCI number, SACCI cited price pressures, a volatile rand exchange rate and higher interest rates as weighing on the local business environment. SACCI said the reference point for the BCI had been adjusted to make 2020 the base year, reflecting changing trends in the economy and financial markets. (Reporting by Bhargav Acharya in Bengaluru Editing by Alexander Winning)