Revenue fall hits earnings at Tat Hong Holdings

Tat Hong Holdings is the world's largest crawler-crane company. -- PHOTO: TAT HONG
Tat Hong Holdings is the world's largest crawler-crane company. -- PHOTO: TAT HONG

SINGAPORE - Construction crane owner Tat Hong Holdings reported a 77 per cent drop in fourth quarter net earnings to $4.2 million.

Revenue for the three months to March 31 fell by 22 per cent to $155.9 million.

For the full year, net earnings more than halved to $32.8 million from $70.4 million last year while revenue slumped by 18 per cent to $684.1 million.

With the exception of tower crane rental, revenue contribution from all divisions declined during the year.

Gross profit fell 22 per cent to $245.7 million, yielding a gross profit margin of 35.9 per cent.

The crane rental and tower crane rental divisions posted lower margins, which were partially mitigated by improved margin from the general equipment rental division while margin from the distribution division remained stable.

Other operating income jumped by 91 per cent to $28.2 million, mainly from the gain realised from the transfer of land rights for a 25-acre plot of industrial land in Iskandar, Malaysia amounting to $12.9 million.

This was, however, substantially eroded by the impairment charge of $3.4 million on the group's carrying value in an associate as well as net foreign exchange losses amounting to $8.4 million, primarily from the depreciation of the Indonesia Rupiah against the Singapore dollar and the US dollar.

The forex losses, mostly unrealised, arose largely from inter-company loans made to the group's subsidiaries in Indonesia.

Share of profits from associates and joint ventures fell 30 per cent to $5.4 million as higher contribution from associates were dampened by the weaker performance of a joint venture in Papua New Guinea following the completion of a LNG project.

Full year earnings per share rose to 5.11 cents from 11.62 cents previously while net asset value per share eased by three cents to $1.05.

Against the backdrop of a tenuous recovery in the major economies in the West, the slowing growth momentum of emerging economies in Asia and geopolitical tensions in the region, Tat Hong is, nonetheless, cautiously optimistic of a modestly better performance this financial year.

A final dividend of one cent a share was recommended, down from 2.5 cents last year.