ASPEN Pharmacare Holdings grew profit in its 14th  consecutive year after "exceptional" growth in the Asia Pacific business and strong gains in the international and sub-Saharan African business, the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

Revenue from continuing operations increased by 23% to R15.3bn in the year to June 30 2012. Operating profit was up 25% to R3.9bn.

Normalised headline earnings from continuing operations increased by 22% to R2.9bn, while normalised diluted headline earnings per share rose by the same percentage to 636.2c.

A capital distribution of 157c (2011:105c) per ordinary share was declared.

"During the year, Aspen increased its diversity in product offerings and geographic exposure," Aspen Group CE Stephen Saad said in a statement.

He said group would continue to focus on strengthening existing businesses, extending territorial coverage and increasing the product offering in areas which offered good future growth potential.

The South African business had a positive second half, but consistent with previously communicated expectations, showed negative growth for the year as a whole.

The group continued to invest in capital projects to upgrade and expand production in Port Elizabeth and in East London. A refurbishment of the active pharmaceutical ingredient facility at the Fine Chemicals business in Cape Town was also underway.