ComfortDelgro – BT

ComfortDelGro full-year net up 4% to $228.5m

Revenue increased 5.1% to a record $3.21b on broad- based growth

COMFORTDELGRO’S net profit edged up 4.1 per cent to $228.5 million for the full year ended Dec 31, 2010, as taxation for the land transport giant rose 33.7 per cent to $78.1 million.

Revenue increased 5.1 per cent to a record $3.21 billion on broad-based growth. The world’s second-largest land transport group said group revenue would have been $206.1 million, or 6.8 per cent, higher if not for the negative foreign currency effect.

The group posted 11 per cent higher operating profit at $388.4 million, while earnings per share were 10.95 cents – up from 10.52 cents a year ago.

‘We are pleased that we have continued to grow both our topline and bottom line for the year just ended,’ said ComfortDelGro managing director and group CEO Kua Hong Pak.

‘We have also expanded our global fleet to more than 46,000 vehicles, giving us the flexibility to do even more in terms of leveraging on technology.’

Growth was recorded from all business segments except automotive engineering services. Revenue for the group’s full-year bus business climbed 5.3 per cent to $1.61 billion, although this was partly eroded by the negative foreign currency translation effect of $25.8 million. Operating profit of $149.2 million for 2010 was 20.4 per cent higher than in 2009.

ComfortDelGro added that the overseas bus business continued to power ahead by accounting for 72.5 per cent of group bus operating profit – the first time it has crossed the 70 per cent mark.

The taxi business saw revenue rise 5.9 per cent to $981.9 million, thanks partly to Singapore’s higher rental income from a larger fleet and more new replacement taxis and a higher volume of cashless transactions. Singapore’s taxi business revenue was 9.6 per cent higher at $696 million, contributing to overall operating profit of $76.4 million, or a jump of 30.8 per cent.

Revenue from the rail business was 11.5 per cent higher at $121.7 million on the increase in average daily riderships on the North East Line and Light Rail Transit, leading to operating profit rising 24.9 per cent to $25.6 million.

But revenue from the automotive engineering services business was $11.2 million lower at $395.1 million, mainly on fewer buses assembled and the divestment of the car dealership business in Chengdu. Operating profit of $39.1 million was $12.1 million less due to the lower revenue and higher cost of materials.

Over at the vehicle inspection and testing business, revenue grew $6.5 million to $86 million because of the higher number of cars inspected by Vicom and higher sales achieved by Setsco Services. Operating profit rose $2.6 million to $27.3 million.

As for group operating expenses, they rose 4.3 per cent to $2.82 billion due to, among other things, increases in payments to drivers for contract services in line with the increases in cashless transactions, contracted services for the Youth Olympic Games and Irish Citylink, higher staff costs, higher fuel and electricity costs, and higher depreciation and amortisation with a newer fleet.

Other contributing factors were higher costs of diesel purchased for resale, and higher road and diesel taxes from the absence of savings from the Singapore government Budget.

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