AEON 1Q net profit down 77% as MCO hits

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KUALA LUMPUR (May 20): Japanese retailer AEON Co (M) Bhd saw its net profit plunge 77.1% to RM7.47 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 2020 (1QFY20), from RM32.64 million a year earlier, on lower revenue.

This resulted in lower earnings per share (EPS) of 0.53 sen for 1QFY20, compared with 2.32 sen for 1QFY19.

Revenue for the quarter fell 1.3% to RM1.19 billion, from RM1.21 billion for 1QFY19, on lower revenue contributions from its retail business and property management services segments.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia today, the group said retail business revenue was lower by 0.9% year-on-year (y-o-y) to RM1.02 billion for 1QFY20 mainly due to lower general merchandise store (GMS) sales recorded, especially during the movement control order (MCO) period. "GMS, considered non-essential service, was not allowed to operate during this period."

Revenue from its property management services segment also fell by 3.6% y-o-y to RM169 million mainly due to lower sales commission receivables from tenants during the MCO period.

On current-year prospects, AEON said under such a challenging environment, though the company had experienced interruptions to its core businesses during the MCO period, it had also actively taken proactive business initiatives and operational measures, including austerity cost measures, customer safety measures as well as welfare for its employees, to ensure that its businesses would remain resilient for the year.

AEON shares ended two sen or 1.74% lower at RM1.13 today, giving it a market capitalisation of RM1.59 billion. A total of 623,300 shares were traded.