CapitaMalls Asia fourth-quarter earnings up 17.1%

Higher contributions from newly completed malls last year helped to boost fourth-quarter earnings by 17.1 per cent at CapitaMalls Asia (CMA).

Earnings came in at $216.4 million for the three months to Dec 31, although revenue dipped 8.7 per cent to $103.7 million, partly due to lower leasing commissions and project management fees from China as fewer malls opened in 2013 compared with the previous year.

Full-year net profit rose 9.9 per cent to $600 million while revenue went up 5.3 per cent to $380.4 million, mainly due to full year contributions from The Star Vista and Olinas Mall.

CMA chairman Ng Kee Choe said on Thursday: "Growth in our key markets in Asia is expected to be underpinned by resilient domestic demand, and this bodes well for the performances of our shopping malls."

CMA chief executive Lim Beng Chee added that the key markets of Singapore, China and Malaysia continued their good performances last year, recording increases in net property income and tenants' sales and strong shopper traffic.

"Our China malls grew the fastest, with net property income increasing 13.1 per cent and total tenants' sales up 13.2 per cent," he said.

CMA aims to open four new malls this year - two in China and two in India.

Earnings per share for the quarter was 5.6 cents up from 4.8 cents, compared with the same period a year ago.

Net asset value per share was $1.84 as at Dec 31, up from $1.67 from a year ago.

The board has proposed a final dividend of 1.75 cents per share, bringing the total dividend for the full year to 3.5 cents a share.