ONLY World Group Holdings Bhd (OWG) which operates food outlets, water amusement parks, retail service outlets and other family attractions could bring in an average of RM17.5mil in sales per annum once its completes the refurbishment of the Komtar tower in Penang this year.
That estimate is based on ticket prices for the themed attractions it will introduce within the tower, which will range between RM10 and RM60 per ticket or an average of RM35 per ticket and a total of 500,000 visitors per annum.
Founder Datuk Seri Richard Koh Cheng Keong, who gave the estimate says the group, tasked to revive one of the island’s most famous landmarks, hopes to introduce more than eight family attractions as well as food and beverage (F&B) outlets.
Among the key attractions is the Jurassic Research Centre which will showcase a combination of entertainment and education via a variety “informative exhibits and displays.”
“There will also be the 5D Sea Explorer, where technology meets underwater and the 7D Planetarium Dome which will be an intensively visual experience,” Koh tells StarBizWeek.
Although Koh did not say when the attractions will be ready, CIMB Research, which tracks the company, notes that all components including the themed attractions, an observation deck and an “interactive” lift will be launched together as a single coherent destination by April this year.
Assuming a lower average price of RM30 per ticket and a pre-tax margin of 30%,the themed attractions could lift the company’s FY16-FY18 earnings per share (EPS) by 10%-25%, the research outfits notes.
“The combined upside potential from higher ticket prices and the attractions could lift our FY16-18F EPS by 16% to 71%, which could then lift our share price valuation to RM6.70,” it told clients in a Jan 13 note.
OWG yesterday reported a net profit of RM5.33mil on sales of RM28.35mil for its second quarter ended Dec 31, 2015.
Its share price last traded at RM2.46 yesterday, up 5% in a broader market which finished lower.
“Due to the delicate structure of Komtar, the refurbishment and renovation have to be done with precaution,” Koh says.
OWG was listed on Bursa Malaysia in late 2014 at an issue price of 88 sen. It raised close to RM50mil via that initial public offering.
In December 2012, the company won a tender to revitalise the 65-storey iconic Komtar tower, a project mooted by the state government.
Its responsibility was initially to transform five levels of the tower namely levels five, 59, 60, 64 and 65 which have a net lettable area (NLA) of 60,000 sq ft.
The original NLA had later doubled, with the extra area coming from an additional floor (Level 66) as well as new space on levels three, four, five, and six.
OWG has said that it intends to operate most of the F&B outlets, which would include a sky restaurant as well as other outlets there via its own brands or third party operators.
Its target market is primarily tourists.
In exchange for the company undertaking the project, OWG has been granted a lease to operate the attractions and F&B outlets by the Penang Development Corpo for 45 years with an option to renew for 15 more years.
Koh, in his personal capacity, has had experience in developing theme parks such as the Resorts World Genting, Universal Studios Singapore and Sunway Lagoon.
Moving forward, he says among the challenges he foresees for OWG is the identification of new investment opportunities in the current economic climate that will be able to bring in healthy margins to supplement the firm’s existing business model.
According to him, OWG has a unique business model compared with other F&B operators and the company intends to “actively” look out for organic growth opportunities to complement its future growth trajectory.
“With our continued growth, we believe we can increase our margins and enhance our shareholders value.”
As of Dec 31, 2015, the company had cash and cash equivalents of RM18.32mil, with total borrowings amounting to RM42.99mil.