Sembcorp Industries reports second quarter profit of $165.4 million, down 13.3%

CONGLOMERATE Sembcorp Industries on Tuesday reported that second quarter net profit fell 13.3 per cent to $165.4 million.

The company cited weaker profits at its offshore arm and the recognition of a fair value loss on its stake in a unit.

Turnover slipped 6.3 per cent to $2.5 billion.

A big part of the lower profit was the result of some accounting adjustments that had nothing to do with Sembcorp's operations.

This relates to the fact that the company's corporate activities segment recorded a $25.9 million loss for the quarter, from a $1.8 million profit a year earlier.

This was due to the recognition of a fair value loss for Sembcorp's unit Gallant Venture when its shareholding was diluted from 23.92 per cent to 11.96 per cent.

The change was made to conform with accounting standards.

There were also some operating factors. Contributions from the marine segment fell 13 per cent to $75.72 million.

Sembcorp's separately-listed rigbuilding unit Sembcorp Marine had last week reported a profit fall owing to a change in product mix and timing in the recognition of rig building and other projects.

There was a slight drop in earnings from the conglomerate's urban development operations owing to an allowance for doubtful debts in its China associate.

But Sembcorp's utilities business performed strongly for the period, with profit contributions growing 18 per cent to $111.94 million. This was due to its recently-acquired power assets in China.

Earnings per share for the quarter were 9.26 cents, down from 10.67 cents a year earlier. Net asset value per share was $2.54 at June 30, up from $2.52 at the end of last year.

For the half year to June 30, net profit fell 6.8 per cent to $342.2 million as revenue dropped 4.9 per cent to $4.85 billion.