Neo Group full-year earnings fall 18.1% to $6.1m compared to previous 14 months

Founder, chairman and CEO of Neo Group Mr Neo Kah Kiat pictured in the central kitchen on Jul 8, 2015.
Founder, chairman and CEO of Neo Group Mr Neo Kah Kiat pictured in the central kitchen on Jul 8, 2015.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Food caterer Neo Group posted a 18.1 per cent fall to S$6.1 million in net profit for the financial year ended March 31, compared to S$7.4 million for the preceding 14 months, as higher expenses offset a jump in sales.

The company has changed its financial year-end from Jan 31 to March 31. On an annualised basis, net profit rose 13.9 per cent, said the company.

Revenue rose 62 per cent to S$125.4 million, surpassing an earlier record of S$77.4 million for the preceding 14-month period, Neo Group said in a filing to the Singapore Exchange in Thursday (May 26).

This was largely due to S$37.3 million of maiden 10-month revenue from acquired food manufacturing group Thong Siek Holdings (TSH) Pte Ltd, which owns the "DoDo" brand of fishballs, and S$7.5 million of 5-month revenue contribution from food trading subsidiary, CT Vegetables & Fruits Pte Ltd.

But a sharp increase in advertising and acquisition-related expenditure, including a 48.8 per cent jump in employee benefit expenses to S$37.4 million, swung the company into the red.

Said Neo Group's outlook, founder, chairman and CEO Neo Kah Kiat: "In FY2016, we've enhanced our value proposition as an end-to-end food and catering solutions provider through our recent synergistic acquisitions and believe we are better equipped to capture more of the market, and poised to expand overseas, leveraging on TSH Group's global network."

A final dividend of one Singapore cent per share has been proposed.