Boustead Holdings FY17 earnings at RM462m, boost from land sale

Boustead Holdings deputy chairman/group managing director Tan Sri Lodin Wok Kamaruddin said the group's stronger performance was driven by gains from the disposal of plantation lands.

KUALA LUMPUR: Boustead Holdings Bhd's earnings rose to RM462mil in the financial year ended Dec 31, 2017, underpinned by gains realised from the sale of its plantation land and stronger plantation contribution.

Thediversified company said on Wednesday the earnings were up 25.2% from RM369mil a year ago.  

At the profit before tax level, it recorded RM1.11bil, up 50.8% from RM740.40mil a year ago. Its revenue increased 19.7% to RM10.02bil from RM8.37bil. 

“This improved performance was driven by gains realised on disposal of plantation lands, amounting to a total of RM555mil,” it said. 

It announced a final dividend of 2.5 sen a share which will be paid on March 29 to shareholders on the register as at March 15. This will bring total dividends for the year to 11 sen per share. 

In the fourth quarter, its earnings fell 28.6% to RM86.10mil from RM120.70mil a year ago. Its revenue however, rose 15% to RM2.78bil from RM2.42bil. Earnings per share were 4.25 sen compared wuth 5.95 sen.

Boustead Holdings deputy chairman and group managing director Tan Sri Lodin Wok Kamaruddin said the record earnings were mainly driven by gains realised on disposal of plantation lands, coupled with positive contributions from all of its divisions. 

“Once again, the group’s diversified nature enabled us to remain resilient amidst a challenging environment. Moving ahead, we will continue to leverage on our strengths to maintain our momentum and deliver sustained earnings,” he said. 

For FY17, the plantation division was the biggest strongest contributor to the group with a profit of RM733mil compared with RM276mil a year ago – mainly due to the disposal of plantation land. 

He said the division also recorded an increased operating profit on the back of better crop production and higher crude palm oil (CPO) prices. It recorded an average CPO price of RM2,810 per tonne, up by 9% from RM2,584 last year. 

Average palm kernel price rose to RM2,505 per tonne from RM2,460 per tonne last year.

Boustead's trading and industrial division posted lower profit of RM132mil compared with RM147mil last year when there a gain of RM34mil from the disposal of land for RM34mil.

The heavy industries division delivered a profit of RM73mil, which was a turnaround compared with the deficit recorded last year. 

Underpinning the better performance was Boustead Naval Shipyard's (BNS) littoral combat ship project and other ship repair projects. 

BNS also benefited from recognised income from the littoral mission ship project and the reversal of provision for liquidated ascertained damages on ship repair projects. 

MHS Aviation booked in compensation for the termination of a joint operations contract.

As for the finance and investment division, profit rose 14.5% to RM71mil from RM62 mil in FY16 mainly due to lower finance costs arising from reduced borrowings due to utilisation of proceeds from the rights issue.

The pharmaceutical division's profit rose to RM54mil due to stronger contributions from its overseas operations as well as lower finance costs. 

As for the property division. Its profit was lower at RM54mil as it was impacted by start-up costs for MyTOWN Shopping Centre and reduced earnings from property development activities in Taman Mutiara Rini, Johor.
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