A stronger showing in China bolstered the second-quarter results of developer CapitaLand, which yesterday posted a 5.8 per cent rise in net profit to $464 million.
The improved bottom line was largely attributable to fair value gains from a change in use at two development properties in China.
Revenue rose 17.8 per cent to about $1.03 billion for the period, on the back of higher contributions from development projects in China, and partly offset by lower revenue from development projects in Singapore and Vietnam.
For the first half, net profit was up 6.7 per cent to $625.26 million and revenue jumped 30.8 per cent to $1.95 billion.
Across segments, revenue at CapitaLand Singapore grew 0.3 per cent to $318.83 million for the quarter, as it sold 37 units.
The rise in revenue was mainly driven by higher sales at Urban Resort Condominium, revenue contribution from Sky Vue, higher rental income from CapitaLand Commercial Trust, Bedok Mall and CapitaGreen - completed last December.
As for a pipeline of future sites, CapitaLand Singapore chief executive Wen Khai Meng said land prices here are still at a level "which does not make the risk-return trade-off sensible for us".
"Of course we want to replenish our landbank... But we want to do it in a way that will make profit for our shareholders," Mr Wen said, noting that it has some 1,300 unsold units. These include 158 at The Interlace as at June 30, for which the group could pay an estimated $3.3 million for a six-month extension charge this year.
Revenue at CapitaLand China shot up 122.9 per cent to $342.75 million for the quarter as market activity picked up significantly. It sold 2,764 units during the quarter with a sales value of 5.7 billion yuan (S$1.2 billion), a 313 per cent rise compared with a year back.
CapitaLand China chief executive Lucas Loh said gross margins dipped slightly over the past year, to about 20 per cent in the first half.
On the malls front, revenue at CapitaLand Mall Asia was down 6 per cent to $167.8 million, owing to lower progressive revenue recognition from Bedok Residences.
Still, for the first half year, same-mall net property income was up 2.8 per cent to $465 million in Singapore, and up 9.1 per cent to 1.76 billion yuan in China. Tenants' sales were also up in both markets.
AT A GLANCE
$1.031 billion (+17.8%)
$464 million (+5.8%)
Revenue at Ascott rose 4.4 per cent to $182.62 million, mainly due to higher fee income and contribution from properties acquired last year. "For Ascott, the focus is on building global economies of scale... The target is to grow to 80,000 units in 2020," said CapitaLand president and chief executive Lim Ming Yan. Ascott had 40,942 units as at June 30.
Technology was also in focus at yesterday's results briefing.
The company said on Monday that Ascott is leading a consortium to invest US$50 million (S$69 million) in online Chinese apartment- sharing platform Tujia. Ascott is also forming a joint venture with the firm to operate and franchise serviced apartments in China, with an initial capital of US$40 million.
Yesterday, Ascott chief executive Lee Chee Koon said: "Technology has changed how people interact with real estate. As a company we must think about how we need to evolve, change our business model and strengthen our competitiveness in this area."
Earnings per share for the quarter was 10.9 cents, up from 10.3 cents a year earlier.
Net asset value per share was $4.04 as at June 30, up from $3.94 as at Dec 31.
CapitaLand shares closed one cent lower at $3.17 yesterday.