Star 3Q net profit lower at RM34.3 mil

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KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 19): Star Publications (M) Bhd's net profit came in lower at RM34.3 million for the third quarter ended Sept 30 (3QFY14), compared with RM44.05 million in the previous corresponding period.  

The media group's earnings were affected by dampening of overall advertising expenditure, which brought the performance of its print and digital segment down.

The other factors included the weak market sentiments, economic uncertainties, the fuel price increase, the increase in interests rate and the voluntary separation scheme (VSS) exercise to reduce the group’s headcount.

The company spent RM11.5 million in payouts for its VSS exercise, which will see future savings in its operating expenses.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia today, Star reported a 6.4% decrease in revenue to RM247.18 million in 3QFY14, against RM264.22 million in the same quarter a year ago, which was attributed to the lower revenue contribution from the print segment.

Earnings per share (EPS) for 3QFY14 was lower at 4.65 sen per share, against 5.97 sen in the same quarter a year ago.

For the nine months ended Sept 30, 2014(9MFY14), Star reported net profits of RM89.93 million — an 8.8% decrease as compared to RM98.67 million achieved in the previous corresponding period, due to higher operating expenses mainly related to a voluntary separation scheme amounting to RM11.5 million.

Revenue for 9MFY14 declined marginally by 0.4% to RM732.85 million, from RM736.16 million in the same period a year ago.

For 9MFY14, Star recorded a lower EPS of 12.19 sen, as compared to 9MFY13 EPS of 13.37sen.

Star share price went up two sen to RM2.30 today, resulting in a market capitalisation of RM1.69 billion.