COULD construction and property player Protasco Bhd be a stock worth watching now that its boardroom tussle and one-off impairments have come to a close?
The company seems to have kitchen-sinked all of its skeletons in the fourth quarter of 2018, when it took a RM41.6mil hit to its bottom line on the back of cost overruns, provisions, impairments and retrenchment costs.
Following this write off, as if starting on a clean slate, Protasco posted a first-quarter net profit of RM1.23mil from a previous net loss of RM2.14mil.
Today, at its share price of 25.5 sen, the stock has retraced some 50% over the last 12 months.
Protasco’s earnings are supported by an orderbook of RM707mil and a decent dividend yield ranging from 5.6 sen to 6.8 sen for the next two years. The company is expected to pay out dividends of 1.4 sen and 1.7 sen this year and next.
Should Protasco achieve CIMB Research’s estimated 2019 net profit of RM12.24mil, this would give the stock a price/earnings ratio of some 12 times.
Protasco, which started as a “road doctor”, was listed on Bursa Malaysia in 2003, and was one of the few integrated specialists in road construction, rehabilitiation and maintenance.