PublicInvest raises earnings estimate on KLK


KUALA LUMPUR: PublicInvest Research has increased its FY21-23 earnings forecasts on Kuala Lumpur Kepong Bhd (KLK) on the back of better-than-expected performance in the group's manufacturing, property and other non-core businesses.

The research house said the group's 1Q core net profit of RM285.3mil after stripping out exceptional items, came in line with its and consensus expectations at 30% and 28% of full-year estimates respectively.

Earnings in the group's plantations segment jumped 83% year-on-year (y-o-y), while manufacturing rose 67% and property climbed 63%.

The farming business recorded a surge in profit to RM47mil from RM8mil in the previous comparative quarter due to improved yields and higher cropped area.

"To reflect better-than-expected performance from manufacturing, property and other non-core businesses, we revise up our FY21-23 earnings forecast by 15%-17%," said PublicInvest.

Meanwhile, the research house expects KLK's nitrile glove plant to potentially contribute an additional 10-26% of its FY22-23 earnings projection.

The plan in Bercham, Ipoh, will have 15 production lines to produce up to 4.5 billion pieces of gloves per year with an estimated capex of RM200mil.

The production lines will come on stream progressively from end-2021 to 2023.

PublicInvest maintained its neutral call on KLK with a new target price of RM25.41 from RM25.12 previously, after rolling over its valuation to FY22.
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