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Better margins help pull Thakral net up 22%

Better margins help pull Thakral net up 22%
It posts $2.5m profit with greater contribution from China property

(2011-05-14)

  THAKRAL Corporation yesterday posted a 22 per cent increase in first-quarter net profit to $2.5 million for the three months ended March 31. The increase was attributed to improved margins of 7.4 per cent, from 3 per cent a year ago.

  The improved gross contributions from its property development unit in Wujiang and higher margins of its core consumer distribution business translated to higher profits. The company also recorded an increased foreign exchange gain of $0.6 million, from $0.3 million previously.

  The mainboard-listed company registered a revenue of S$108.4 million, down 2 per cent from the first quarter a year ago.

  Quarter on quarter, however, revenue was 32 per cent higher due to increased sales in China and Hong Kong.

  Earnings per share for the first quarter remained at 0.08 of a Singapore cent. Net asset value fell 0.03-cent from the fourth quarter of 2010 to 3.8 cents.

  The company's cash position rose quarter on quarter to $43.9 million from $33.2 million due to an increase in bank finance in the first quarter.

  Operational cash saw an inflow of $6.9 million, against an outflow of $12.3 million previously.

  Higher sales activity and the disposal of commercial property by Wujiang Dafa led to a reduced inventory of $39.3 million, from $41.6 million previously. Trade receivables rose to $32.3 million from $30.1 million.

  Thakral's property unit reported $3.3 million worth of sales of commercial units in China for a profit of $1.5 million, up $0.8 million year on year.

  The outlook for the company remains optimistic, with Thakral investing $8.9 million in three real estate projects in Australia, while China's inflation measures will also put the company at an advantage.

  Said executive chairman Kartar Singh Thakral: 'We will persist in pursuing this strategy and leverage on the growth momentum in consumer demand in China as the country forges ahead with its economic growth.'

  Thakral has declared an interim dividend of 0.1-cent per share for the quarter. The book closure date will be May 24.

  In the stock market yesterday, Thakral shares fell half a cent to 2.5 cents.

《The Business Times》

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