KUALA LUMPUR: Insurer Pacific & Orient Bhd narrowed its losses in the second quarter ended March 31, 2019 to RM1.97mil compared with RM8.23mil a year ago and it expects the general insurance business to remain challenging due to intense competitive pressures and the progressive impact of tariff liberalisation.
It announced to Bursa Malaysia on Thursday, it recorded a profit before tax (PBT) of RM2.78mil compared with a pretax loss (PTL) of RM2.86mil.
Its revenue increased by 2.8% to RM85.54mil from RM83.22mil. Loss per share was 0.73 sen compared with 3.30 sen. Despite the losses, it declared an interim dividend of 1.25 sen a share.
P&O said its revenue from its insurance segment by RM2.46mil to RM82.20mil primarily due to higher gross earned premium.
However, PBT declined to RM11.29mil from RM11.92mil a year ago mainly due to higher marketing and promotional expenses.
As for its information technology (IT) segment, revenue from external parties increased by RM156,000 to RM2.94mil. Its PTL was lower at RM3.38mil compared to a PTL of RM3.83mil, mainly due
to lower unrealised foreign exchange losses of RM803,000.
In the first half, its net losses were RM8.89mil compared with RM17.67mil in the previous corresponding period. Its reevnue rose by 2% to RM163.10mil from RM160.46mil.
P&O said the group’s cash and cash equivalents as at March 31, 2019 was RM58.03mil.
“The net cash generated from operating activities amounted, to RM27.88mil as a result of improved collections from reinsurance and other receivables. The net cash generated from investing activities of RM6.47mil was due to disposal of investments.
“The net cash used in financing activities of RM34.97mil was principally for payment of dividends,” it said.
On the outlook, P&O said the general insurance business remained challenging due to intense competitive pressures and the progressive impact of tariff liberalisation.
“To mitigate this, the group will continue with its investment in digital technologies to adopt and implement new innovative and value added solutions to its customers.
“The IT segment also remains extremely competitive but the board expects the long term growth in this segment to remain stable with the group’s focus being to maintain high quality service to clients,” it said.