On September 3, Fin24 reported that the Discovery Group’s shares had dropped more than 10% after it hinted at a possible rights issue to raise the R1.5-bn in capital needed to help its Chinese investment, Ping An Health Insurance, expand. The shares ended down 7.8% at R121.20.

“The dividend waiver came even as the financial services group announced a strong profit of R3.22-bn for the year ended June 2021, a 1 730% increase on the R176-m the previous financial year. Headline earnings per share, which excludes one-off items, increased 910% to 454.7c from 45c the previous year. It said the reintroduction of an ordinary dividend would be considered on an ongoing basis.”

Discovery said the effect of Covid-19 in SA had been about five times more severe on a risk-adjusted basis than in the UK.

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