F&N to maintain revenue growth for FY15

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KUALA LUMPUR (May 6): Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd (F&N) plans to keep revenue growth at "current levels" for the second half ending September 30, 2015 (2HFY15) amid consumer behaviour uncertainty after Malaysia's goods and services tax (GST) implementation.

Soft drinks manufacturer F&N (fundamental: 2.1; valuation: 1.1) chief financial officer Soon Wing Chong said interest rate hikes by Bank Negara Malaysia would also affect consumer sentiment.

Yesterday, F&N reported that net profit rose 4% to RM70.49 million in 2QFY15 from RM68.09 million a year earlier. Revenue climbed 0.5% to RM939.89 million from RM935.4 million.

For 1HFY15, F&N's revenue rose 5% to RM1.98 billion from RM1.88 billion a year earlier while net profit was higher at RM140.43 million from RM136.86 million.

Today, Soon said at a media briefing: "We hope to maintain this (revenue) growth level. The uncertainty is in consumer behaviour after implementation of GST. That is the biggest unknown."

"Also if there is an interest rate hike, it will impact consumer sentiment too. But all our competitors are also growing at this level," he said.

The media briefing was in conjunction with F&N's announcement of its 2QFY15 and 1HFY15 financials.

At 12.13pm, F&N shares rose six sen or 0.3% to RM12.60 for a market capitalisation of RM6.81 billion.

The stock's gain came on thin trade of 2,000 shares.

(Note: The Edge Research's fundamental score reflects a company’s profitability and balance sheet strength, calculated based on historical numbers. The valuation score determines if a stock is attractively valued or not, also based on historical numbers. A score of 3 suggests strong fundamentals and attractive valuations.)