UIC sees spike in Q3 earnings to $57.9 million

SINGAPORE - United Industrial Corp (UIC) has posted a 37 per cent rise in third quarter net profit to $59.7 million.

Revenue for the three months to Sept 30 rose by 17 per cent to $178.4 million, due mainly to higher trading property sales and higher revenue from hotel operations.

Sales of trading properties at $52.5 million was higher by $20.9 million, with progressive sales recognition on percentage of completion basis for V on Shenton, Alex Residences and Mon Jervois, partially offset by absence of sales from The Trizon (fully sold in the first quarter).

Revenue from hotel operations increased by 13 per cent to $38.6 million, with higher room and occupancy rates, and higher food and beverage revenue in Pan Pacific Singapore hotel.

The hotel re-opened in September 2012 after major refurbishment.

Gross rental income from investment properties inched up 1 per cent to $68.5 million.

Higher contributions from the Archipelago and Thomson Three joint venture residential property projects with progressive recognition of development profits, on percentage of completion basis, led to the increase in share of joint ventures' profit by 87 per cent to $9 million.

Earnings per share climbed to 4.3 cents from 3.1 cents previously while net asset value per share climbed to $3.99 compared to $3.61 as at Dec 31.

Looking ahead, UIC said prime office rental is expected to remain buoyant as Singapore continues to be a top city of choice for business start-ups and regional head office operations.

Retail rental will remain steady as new retail brands and up-market food and beverage chains pick Singapore to expand their reach in the South East Asian Market.

However, residential property market is expected to remain flat as property cooling measures and debt servicing ratio rules continue to inhibit prospective investors.

Hotel operations will stay firm despite slower growth in visitor arrivals, due primarily to longer stay as a result of increasing variety of attractions, good image, and a safe and friendly environment.