ComfortDelgro – BT

ComfortDelgro Q2 profit up 0.9% to $57.3m

Revenue dips 4% as it takes a hit from weaker pound and Australian dollar

COMFORTDELGRO has reported a marginal 0.9 per cent increase in second-quarter net profit to $57.3 million, supported by an exceptional gain of $26.5 million.

The group registered a 4 per cent dip in revenue to $758.3 million as earnings from foreign operations were hit by a weaker pound and Australian dollar.

Earnings per share rose to 2.74 cents from 2.73 cents a year ago. A dividend of 2.63 cents a share for the quarter will be paid out on Sept 8.

Revenue from bus operations slipped 3.9 per cent to $380.4 million as a result of declines in Singapore and the UK, although operations in Australia and China grew.

Revenue from bus services under SBS Transit dropped 7.4 per cent to $132.5 million as a result of the temporary fare reduction and increase in the transfer rebate – which started in April – as well as a drop in patronage.

Revenue from the taxi business fell 2.8 per cent to $230.7 million from a year earlier, dragged down by operations in the UK.

Revenue from the rail business was up 1.1 per cent to $26.3 million as average daily patronage of the North East Line and the Punggol and Sengkang LRTs grew.

Revenue from bus station business rose 13 per cent to $5.2 million, while revenue from vehicle inspection and testing was 6.5 per cent higher at $19.8 million.

ComfortDelGro group CEO Kua Hong Pak said: ‘Despite the economic downturn, we have achieved growth. While our businesses are fundamentally sound, we remain cautious given the uncertain outlook.’

DMG & Partners maintained a ‘buy’ on Comfort, with a target price of $1.78. Comfort’s stock closed at $1.57 yesterday, down two cents.

Separately, SBS Transit said yesterday that it has invested $159 million in 350 new single and double-decker buses from Sweden’s Scania and Volvo as part of its fleet renewal programme. SBS will have 1,450 new buses in its fleet.

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