South African cement firm Pretoria Portland Cement said on Monday its profits for the half-year should be 10-30 per cent higher than last year’s thanks to good growth in domestic demand - boosting its shares. "The chairman reported at the Annual General Meeting in January that trading for the first quarter had been favourable and that local cement sales volumes grew ahead of expectation," PPC said in a statement. "Domestic cement demand has continued to be buoyant and will result in stronger than anticipated growth in sales volumes and revenues for PPC," it added.
Meanwhile the company has also announced that Orrie Fenn had been promoted to managing director of PPC Cement with effect from March 1, 2004, and was appointed to the PPC board on March 5, 2004. Fenn¹s appointment follows the recently announced appointment of PPC chief operating officer and Cement MD, John Blackbeard, as CEO designate of Barloworld Scientific. Blackbeard will take up his new position with effect from 1 July 2004.