Gardenia bread maker QAF reports 14% rise in Q1 profit to $11.5 million

Multi-industry food company QAF today announced a 14 per cent increase in net profit to $11.5 million for the first quarter ended March 31 compared to the same period last year.

QAF's revenue rose to $250.8 million in the first three months, up 4 per cent from the same three-month period last year.

The revenue growth for the locally-listed company was driven by its core businesses in bakery, primary production and trading and logistics.

In its results announcement, the company said that the bakery operations in Malaysia achieved the highest sales after launching new products and increased production capacities. The bakery operations in the Philippines did so through further market penetration.

Gardenia, a household bread name, is one of the brands under QAF.

Cost of materials in the first quarter also climbed to $133.7 million, up 8 per cent from the same period last year due to the sharp increase in gain prices.

Utilities for its production lines went up by 8 per cent to $8 million in the first quarter due to increased production activities and high electricity charges.

However, lower interest rates helped reduce the finance costs by 15 per cent in the first quarter to $1.2 million compared to the same period last year.

Earnings per share for the first quarter stood at 2.2 cents, up from 1.9 cents in the same three months last year.

Net asset value of the group as at Mar 31 was 77.8 cents, up three cents from 74.8 cents on Dec 31 last year.

QAF's shares closed half a cent down to 95.5 cents. The results were announced after the market closed.