Pioneer to make offshore buys

Eric Chiriga


TRANSPORT and logistics firm, Pioneer Corporation Africa (PCA), says it will make further acquisitions under its expansion programme, but these will be offshore.

Patrick Chingoka, the corporation’s chairman, said they were scouting for g

rowth opportunities mainly in the region, with negotiations already having started over prospective acquisitions.

“The negotiations are now at an advanced stage (with) a transport venture,” Chingoka said, refusing to divulge further details.

He said that they were still pursuing the airline business.

“We are still waiting for the regulatory authorities,” Chingoka said.

The corporation also announced plans to increase its stake in the international courier division, whose details Chingoka also refused to disclose.

PCA has issued numerous cautionary statements, advising shareholders that negotiations that may result in an acquisition were under way.

“The cautionary announcements relate to offshore acquisitions,” Chingoka said in a statement accompanying the group’s results for the year ended December 31, 2005.

Chingoka said they were confident that the regulatory processes would be completed in due course.

“There is an opportunity to acquire majority stakes in the international courier division,” he said.

Chingoka said the group had moved into a new regional and local enlargement phase and was looking forward to strong growth going forward.

“The group is geared up for growth and further profits after asset acquisitions, a regional expansion drive and growth in the key passenger sector,” Chingoka said.

PCA obtained a US$6 million offshore loan, which Chingoka said was used to finance the purchase of assets.

The group posted a $38,8 billion profit after tax in the year ended December 31, 2005, from a $4,2 billion loss the previous year.

The company’s asset base grew from $1,7 trillion to $2 trillion, while revenue shrunk from $1,3 trillion to $1,1 trillion.

In the financial overview, the Chingoka stated: “The reduction in inflation-adjusted turnover was due to regulated pricing in the passenger business, and lower exchange ate in the first half.”

The group posted a $63,7 billion profit after tax in inflation-adjusted terms, up from an $18,5 billion loss in 2004.
However, its revenue recovered to match inflation in the second half of the year.

Chingoka said the organisation had realised a profitable year following an improved second half.

“Pioneer Corporation Africa saw a profitable year following an improved second half,” said Chingoka.

PCA is a holding company for seven subsidiaries namely Pioneer Transport, Pioneer Coaches, Trek Africa, Pal Logistics, Clan, Cross City Courier and Sky Net.

All the business units made considerable profits contributing to the group’s positive results.