INVESTMENT company Sabvest has managed to increase its headline earnings per share by 68.9% to a record level of 300.9c in the year to December, thanks to strong operating performances from its main investments.

Sabvest benefited from the market values of its major listed investments including Brait, Datatec and Metrofile, which were all doing well, CEO Christopher Seabrooke said on Tuesday.

He said the increase in market value of the three groups was underpinned by strong operating performances. The other major contributor was the gains on sales of unlisted investments.

The group’s unlisted industrial associates performed in line with expectations, with Sabvest’s share of their net income increasing 16% to R94.7m.

SA Bias Industries produced satisfactory results, which were aided by the effect of a weaker rand on offshore earnings.

The Set Point Group achieved a material increase in profitability for the year to August.

Flowmax produced softer results in a difficult trading climate in the UK, while Sunspray Food Ingredients produced results in line with budgets.

Sabvest reported that shareholders’ funds with investments at intrinsic value, net of notional corporate gains tax, increased 19% to R855m.

This increase was achieved notwithstanding that a provision for deferred tax was increased by R28.3m relating to current and prior years because of the increase in SA’s enacted rate of corporate gains tax.

The new rate would be effective in this financial year.

The full adjustment was taken in the reporting period, with no changes made to prior periods.

Intrinsic value per share increased 19% to R18.55. The increase was also aided by the effects of the weaker rand.

The group’s debt levels remained conservative.