Times may be tough, but diners still have a hearty appetite for restaurant group Jumbo's chain of eateries.
Despite the uncertain economic climate, the Catalist-listed company recorded a 46.3 per cent surge in net profit to $15.5 million for the full year to Sept 30.
Sales rose 11.4 per cent from $122.8 million last year to $136.8 million this year.
The company attributed the revenue increase to the group's two new Jumbo Seafood restaurants in Shanghai, as well as an overall increase in takings at its other restaurants.
It has 15 eateries in Singapore and three in China under five restaurant brands - its flagship Jumbo Seafood, famous for its chilli crabs, as well as Jpot, Ng Ah Sio Bak Kut Teh, Chui Huay Lim Teochew Cuisine and J Cafe. It also manages one Singapore Seafood Republic outlet.
Earnings per share also went up to 2.4 cents from 1.7 cents previously, while net asset value per share was 10.1 cents, up from 8.9 cents a year earlier.
Jumbo chief executive and executive chairman Ang Kiam Meng said: "We are highly encouraged by the continuing broad-based growth we are experiencing across our restaurant operations. This is a clear testament to Jumbo's brand appeal among our customers."
The firm's healthy operating cash flow prompted it to declare a tax-exempt cash dividend of one cent a share, and a special dividend of 0.7 cent a share, representing a total dividend payout of 1.7 cents a share. The dividends amount to about 70.3 per cent of the group's net profit.
Mr Ang said that the firm wants to improve its financial performance by streamlining operations to raise productivity and by lowering operating costs.
Lee Xin En