CDL's Q2 earnings surge 80% on strong home sales

City Developments Limited (CDL) yesterday reported a second-quarter net profit of $204.8 million, up 80 per cent from $114.1 million in the same period a year ago. This came on the back of a 60 per cent increase in revenue for the quarter to $1.36 billion this year, from $854 million in the same period last year.

The increases for the second quarter were due largely to higher gross profit generated by the company's property development segment, said the property developer.

CDL said its launched projects performed well in the first half of the year, before new property cooling measures were announced last month. The group, together with its joint venture associates, sold 651 units, including at executive condominiums (ECs), with a total sales value of $1.29 billion compared with 691 units worth $1.15 billion in the same period last year.

In Singapore, CDL's property projects that did well included the 174-unit Gramercy Park in Grange Road, which was launched in March 2016 and is fully sold. The 124-unit New Futura in Leonie Hill Road has 92 units - representing over 74 per cent of all units and including the two penthouses - sold to date, achieving an average selling price of about $3,500 per square foot, said CDL.

Since Phase 1 of The Tapestry, the group's 861-unit condominium in Tampines, was launched in March this year, 488, or 89 per cent, of the 550 units released have been sold to date with an average selling price of about $1,350 psf.

The board has declared a special interim ordinary dividend of six cents per share.

Mr Kwek Leng Beng, CDL's executive chairman, said: "We had two quarters of strong residential sales in Singapore, but market dynamics changed after the unexpectedly harsh property cooling measures were announced in July. Sales are expected to moderate though prices may be sustained for very few quality projects in good locations where there is limited supply and pent-up demand."

Giving his take at a results briefing yesterday, CDL group chief executive Sherman Kwek said: "I think prices will... certainly be affected and we have already seen that in some of the newer projects that have recently launched. I think they are probably launching at maybe 10 to 15 per cent below what they could have launched at in terms of per square foot pricing."

Commenting on prices at these recent market launches, he said their developers were "quite lucky" because they had acquired their sites earlier and thus had a margin to play with.

"But there isn't a lot of room for prices to go down a huge amount, so we are unlikely to see a huge massive tumble in prices because primarily most of the developers who replenished land over the last 12 months did so at very high prices."

The group is aiming to launch its Whistler Grand condo in West Coast Vale in November. Next year, it plans to release projects on the Amber Park and Handy Road sites, as well as an EC project at Sumang Walk in Punggol.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 09, 2018, with the headline 'CDL's Q2 earnings surge 80% on strong home sales'. Print Edition | Subscribe