Boustead’s PAT up 29% for Quarter One

KUALA LUMPUR, May 27, 2011 – Boustead Holdings Berhad (Boustead) kicked off the new financial year on a high note recording a strong profit after tax of RM134.5 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 2011. This marked a 29% increase over the previous year’s first quarter results of RM104 million.

The Group’s profit before tax of RM168 million was also 24% higher than the RM135 million achieved in the first quarter of 2010. These positive results were achieved on the back of a turnover of RM1.6 billion for the quarter under review compared with RM1.5 billion recorded for the corresponding period last year.

For the period under review, earnings per share (EPS) was 11.9 sen and for the same period last year, EPS was 9.8 sen while net assets per share was RM4.49 (31 December 2010: RM4.50).

As a result of the Group’s performance and fulfilling its dividend policy obligations, the Board of Directors has declared a dividend of 8 sen (corresponding period in 2010: 5 sen) per share.

YBhg Tan Sri Dato’ Lodin Wok Kamaruddin, Deputy Chairman/Group Managing Director, Boustead Holdings Berhad said, “It is heartening to note that we have kicked off this financial year on a strong footing. Profit before tax has improved for most Divisions with the Plantation Division leading strongly, followed by our Property, Pharmaceutical as well as our Manufacturing and Trading Divisions”.

“All in all, we are pleased with our performance to date. Given the diversified nature of the conglomerate, it is further testament to the fact that multiple business segments have a strong influence on our bottom line. Hence, our strategy to pursue organic as well as new growth opportunities continues to bear much fruit”.

“Our Plantation Division is expected to be a strong contributor to the Group’s bottom line this year given the fact that commodity prices particularly crude palm oil (CPO) are performing exceedingly well. The Group is confident that CPO will trade within the current attractive pricing levels which should contribute positively to the Division’s earnings for the year”.

The Plantation Division remained a key contributor to the Group’s revenue by registering an increased profit of RM99 million compared with RM62 million registered in the corresponding quarter of last year. This was primarily attributed to an increase in the average CPO price to RM3,541 per MT, an increase of 42% against last year’s average of RM2,499 per MT in the corresponding period.

The Property Division recorded a profit of RM12.2 million in the first quarter, an impressive 94% increase compared with RM6.3 million recorded in the corresponding period last year. This was due to improved contribution from the Division’s property development segment.

The Pharmaceutical Division reported a profit of RM9.1 million compared with last year’s corresponding period’s loss of RM1.9 million. Key factors were due to improved sales and higher margins.

“As the acquisition of Pharmaniaga was finally completed at the end of March 2011, we are looking forward to a stronger contribution from this Division starting the second quarter onwards,” concluded YBhg Tan Sri Dato’ Lodin.

The Manufacturing and Trading Division’s profit saw an increase of 16% to RM28.8 million, from RM24.8 million for the same period last year. BH Petrol was the primary contributor due to increased sales volume and handsome stockholding gains.

The Finance and Investment Division posted a profit of RM11.9 million, while the Heavy Industries Division posted a profit of RM7.2 million.

Since its inception as a modest trading entity more than 180 years ago, the Boustead Group has grown by leaps and bounds to comprise more than 90 subsidiary and associate companies, and has substantial interests in various sectors of the Malaysian economy. The Boustead Group's operations are focused in six key areas; plantation, heavy industries, property, finance & investment, trading & manufacturing and pharmaceutical. As at 31 March 2011, Boustead Holdings Berhad’s paid-up capital was RM470 million, while its shareholders’ funds stood at RM4.2 billion. Market capitalisation is currently in excess of RM5.2 billion.

Forward looking statements

This release may contain certain forward-looking statements with respect to the financial conditions, results of operations and business of the Group and certain plans and objectives of Boustead Holdings Berhad with respect to these items. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainty because they relate to events and depend on circumstances that will occur in the future and there are many factors that could cause actual results and developments to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements.

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Issued on behalf of: Boustead Holdings Berhad By: acorn communications sdn bhd
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