EPIC: Terengganu-based Eastern Pacific Industrial Corp Bhd’s (EPIC) net profit grew 18% to RM23.4mil while earnings per share (EPS) rose 17.7% to 14.5 sen for the year ended Dec 31, 2004, on better performance by its petroleum supply base in Kemaman and waste management units. News on the RM1.3bil investment by an Australian company to set up an iron ore processing plant near Kemaman Port also spurred trading interest last week. Debt-free EPIC is cash-rich with almost RM70mil as of end 2004 and has the potential to increase its dividend payout this year.
APLI: APL Industries Bhd, now an associate company of rival glovemaker Supermax Corp Bhd, has attracted strong trading interest since the takeover deal was announced early this month. Dealers said together with Supermax, APLI would be able to quickly expand its glove-making operations in Vietnam, where it had established a plant with plenty of room for further growth. It was reported recently that both companies planned to double its production capacity by end of 2007 to become the world’s number one rubber glove producer.
Scomi: SCOMI GROUP BHD requested trading of its shares be suspended prior to the Lunar New Year break and on Valentine’s Day unveiled a plan which would ultimately give Scomi access to a fleet of vessels owned by a Singapore-based company via a local listed jeweller controlled by that company. Based on recent reports, the whole deal was seen as positive for Scomi and even more so for Habib Corp Bhd. Year-to-date, Habib share price has surged 276%, while Scomi was up 3.6% at last Friday’s closing price. Recently Scomi sold 89.4 million shares at RM1.63 each to raise RM145mil to part finance the acquisition.
Pos Malaysia: POS Malaysia & Services Holdings Bhd’s (PMB) shares gained 14% over the past two weeks to close at RM3.08 last Friday as the stock rose to its highest price level since June 2000. Dealers attributed the upward movement to expectations of improved earnings once the postal rate hike for business and international mails became effective on March 1. MIDF-Sisma Securities in a recent note said PMB had a strong balance sheet with net cash and investments totalling some RM1.1bil, which works out to about RM2.60 per share.
WW Cable: Investors chased shares of Wonderful Wire & Cable Bhd higher towards the end of the week on optimism that the company would post strong growth after securing a long-term contract worth RM60mil annually to supply automotive wire harness to a major international client. The company is expected to announce its full-year results by the end of the month, and as of Sept 30, 2004, nine-month net profits stood at RM3.4mil on a turnover of RM68mil.
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