Orascom, Bombardier to build $1.5 billion monorail in Egypt

Updated 04 May 2015
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Orascom, Bombardier to build $1.5 billion monorail in Egypt

CAIRO: Canada’s Bombardier Inc. and Egypt’s Orascom Construction and Arab Contractors will build a $1.5 billion monorail near Cairo, Egypt’s housing minister said.
The 52km project is set to be completed by mid-2018 with funding from a 14-year loan, Mostafa Madbouly said in a statement, without saying who was providing the funds.
The train will connect the Cairo metro system, which is being expanded, to areas west of the capital including 6th of October City and Sheikh Zayed.
Cairo, a centuries-old metropolis where more than 20 million people reside, has suffered for years from crumbling infrastructure and neglect.
Improved public transport could help reduce congestion in streets where commuters compete with commercial traffic, three-wheeled tuk-tuks and donkey carts.
The move comes weeks after the government announced a project to build a new capital southeast of Cairo, a proposal that has received mixed reviews.
Madbouly said technical and financial offers for the rail project had been approved, but Reuters could not immediately reach the companies to confirm the details.
Orascom, an engineering and building business, is controlled by Egypt’s prominent Sawiris family.
It announced plans late last year to build a $3 billion coal-fired power station on the Red Sea coast in a joint venture with Abu Dhabi state fund International Petroleum Investment Co. (IPIC).
According to The Cairo Post, the housing ministry has published a concept design of the train, in which the Mall of Arabia Shopping Center, situated in 6 of October City, appears in the background.
The project aims to serve residential neighborhoods the industrial city.
Although it is classified as part of Giza governorate, 6 of October City is located in the desert far from downtown Cairo and active districts; 17 km from the Giza Pyramids and 32 Km from downtown Cairo.
The monorail project would include 17 stations grouped into two phases; 12 in the first phase and five in the second one.
The monorail project will be implemented by an Egyptian-Canadian coalition, whose technical and financial bid was selected by the Ministry of Housing.


Online fashion retailer Boohoo’s sales almost double

Updated 25 April 2018
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Online fashion retailer Boohoo’s sales almost double

LONDON: British online fast-fashion retailer Boohoo beat forecasts with a 40 percent jump in annual profit and an almost doubling of revenue as its mainly younger customers snapped up its budget-friendly designs.
The company, which imitates the latest fashions and sells them at “pocket money” prices to mainly twentysomethings, said it had made a strong start to this year, sending its shares as much as 18 percent higher.
Its robust performance and that of bigger online peer ASOS highlights how the Internet is reshaping the British retail landscape and the clothing sector in particular.
“Against a backdrop of difficult trading in the UK clothing sector, the group continued to perform well, gaining market share in the expanding online sector,” said joint chief executives Mahmud Kamani and Carol Kane.
Founded in Manchester, northern England, in 2006, Boohoo has expanded rapidly, purchasing the PrettyLittleThing and Nasty Gal brands at the beginning of last year.
The pure Internet players are bucking a challenging backdrop for UK consumers, outflanking and taking market share from traditional rivals burdened with big store estates.
Last week the 240-year old Debenhams department store chain reported a 52 percent slump in first-half profit and warned on the full-year outlook for the second time in four months.
In stark contrast, Boohoo raised sales and profit guidance four times in 2017-18.
The company made a pretax profit of £43.3 million pounds in the year to February 28, up from £30.9 million a year earlier and topping the £39.4 million expected by analysts, according to Reuters data. Revenue soared 97 percent to £579.8 million, ahead of company guidance.
The stock has come off from 273 pence in June last year, on concerns profit growth will be held back by a step-up in investment.
However, Boohoo said on Wednesday it could invest more in systems, technology, warehouses, distribution and marketing, while still delivering substantial sales and profit growth.
Capital expenditure in 2018-19 would be £50 million- £60 million. Revenue growth was forecast at 35-40 percent, with a profit (EBITDA) margin of 9-10 percent.
Looking beyond 2018-19 it forecast sales growth of “at least” 25 percent, whilst maintaining a 10 percent EBITDA margin.
“Critically, fears of a ‘margin reset’ have not been realized,” said analysts at Peel Hunt, reiterating their “buy” recommendation.
“Changes to distribution plans means the next move is likely to be overseas,” they said.