KUALA LUMPUR, May 22, 2013 – Boustead Holdings Berhad (Boustead) commenced the new financial year by registering a profit after tax of RM134 million and a profit before tax of RM175 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 2013. The Group’s results were strongly influenced by lower crude palm oil prices which impacted the Plantation Division. These results were achieved on the back of an increased turnover of RM2.5 billion compared with RM2.4 billion recorded in the first quarter of 2012.

For the period under review, earnings per share (EPS) was 9.7 sen while net assets per share stood at RM4.53 (31 December 2012: RM4.50).

The Group remains dedicated to its dividend policy and delivering value to shareholders. In line with this commitment, the Board of Directors has declared a dividend of 7.5 sen amounting to a total payout of RM77.6 million for the period under review.

YBhg Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Lodin Wok Kamaruddin, Deputy Chairman/Group Managing Director, Boustead Holdings Berhad said, “The first quarter of this year was certainly challenging, particularly bearing on organic growth. Global volatility made an impact on CPO prices followed by marginal declines from our divisions which resulted in an overall decline in the Group’s profitability.”

The Property Division was the major contributor to the Group, delivering a profit of RM33 million. However, it is a decline of 17% compared with RM40 million for the corresponding period last year. The previous year’s result benefitted from the inclusion of a RM25.5 million gain from the disposal of an investment property.

The Plantation Division was severely impacted by depressed commodity prices and a decline in crop production for the period under review, registering a profit of RM31 million compared with RM92 million for the same period last year. The average palm oil price was RM2,335 per metric tonne (MT), representing a decline of 26% compared with last year’s corresponding period’s average of RM3,164 per MT. Crop production of 258,394 MT for the first quarter of 2013 was 6% less when compared with the previous year.

The Trading and Industrial Division contributed a profit of RM30 million, a 14% drop compared with last year’s corresponding quarter. Although BH Petrol registered a higher turnover as a result of increased sales volume, it was not sufficient to cushion the lower stockholding gains recorded.

The Pharmaceutical Division reported a significant profit of RM30 million compared with the profit of RM1.4 million posted in the previous quarter. However, it is a decline of 17% when compared with the RM36 million registered in the same period last year. The Division’s results were impacted by provision for doubtful debts while gross profit margin was lower as a result of higher direct overheads.

As the Heavy Industries Division’s performance was no longer impacted by costs from legacy projects, the Division recorded a profit of RM26 million, a significant improvement compared with the deficit of RM6.5 million recorded in the same quarter last year. Higher progress achieved on the Littoral Combat Ship project also had a positive impact on the quarter’s results. MHS Aviation increased its profit contribution to the Division as a result of the sale of an aircraft in addition to lower maintenance costs.

The Finance and Investment Division registered a profit of RM25 million for the quarter under review, a slight 4% decline compared with RM26 million recorded in 2012’s corresponding quarter. The Division’s results were supported by contribution from the Affin Group and Cadbury.

“As we start this year on a challenging note, we will heighten our efforts and seek out new opportunities while focusing on improving organic growth. We are confident that our strong fundamentals in terms of our diversified streams of income and viable businesses will allow us to accomplish this and deliver a profitable year.” concluded YBhg Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Lodin.

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 & industrial and pharmaceutical. As at 31 March 2013, Boustead Holdings Berhad’s paid-up capital was RM517 million while its shareholders’ funds stood at RM4.7 billion. Market capitalisation is currently in excess of RM5.5 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.


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