Oriental Holdings 1Q profit jumps 53%, declares 28 sen dividend

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KUALA LUMPUR (May 29): Oriental Holdings Bhd's net profit leaped 52.8% to RM93.17 million in first quarter ended March 31 (1QFY19) from RM60.97 million last year, lifted by an unrealised foreign exchange gain and better performance in its automotive, plantation and investment holding segments.

In a bourse filing, Oriental Holdings said its revenue, however, dropped 6.14% to RM1.39 billion from RM1.48 billion registered a year ago.

Earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter rose to 15.02 sen, from 9.83 sen in 1QFY18.

The group declared a final single tier dividend of eight sen per share for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2018 (FY18) as well as a special single tier dividend of 20 sen per share for the same period, bringing total dividend payout to 28 sen. The payment date for both dividends falls on July 11.

Oriental Holdings attributed the decline in quarterly revenue to a lower contribution from its automotive segment, which saw a lower number of cars sold in Malaysia and a decrease in Certificate of Entitlement (COE) and the Additional Registration Fee (ARF) sales in Singapore.

Meanwhile, the group's unrealised foreign exchange gain was due to the strengthening of Indonesian rupiah against the Japanese yen-denominated loans in its plantation segment. Furthermore, the group saw higher contributions from its automotive, plantation and investment holding segments.

On its prospects, Oriental Holdings said its automotive and plastic segments will contribute in competitive market conditions.

Meanwhile, its plantation segment is currently constructing its fourth oil mill in South Sumatra, Indonesia, which is expected to enhance the segment's earnings in FY20.

For its healthcare segment, the group's hospital is expected to register profit by FY20.

Its hotels and resorts segment will look at improving organic growth, while its investment properties segment will see its mixed-use serviced apartments and commercial space in Australia delivered ahead of schedule as construction has been completed — with the lease agreement of the serviced apartments signed and operations started on May 20.

Oriental Holdings shares dropped three sen or 0.45% to close at RM6.66 — with a volume of 71,900 shares — giving it a market capitalisation of RM4.15 billion.