Profit contributions from associate company Vietnam Dairy Products Joint Stock Company (Vinamilk) juiced up earnings at Fraser and Neave (F&N) in the second quarter.
Net profit swelled to $15.39 million for the three months to March 31, from $3.82 million a year ago.
Including exceptional items, net profit for the quarter hit $15.98 million against $8.49 million a year earlier.
Revenue rose 4.8 per cent to $473.09 million, thanks to broad-based sales growth in its core markets of Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.
Earnings per share came to 1.1 cents (after exceptional items), up from 0.6 cent last year.
The share of profits from associated companies came in at $17.14 million, up from $1.47 million.
AT A GLANCE
REVENUE: $473.1 million (+4.8%)
NET PROFIT: $15.4 million (+303.1%)
INTERIM DIVIDEND PER SHARE: 1.5 cents (unchanged)
Profit before interest and taxation jumped 63 per cent to $36.3 million, due to higher dairy and soft drink sales, reduced operating costs, and maiden profit contributions from Vinamilk, in which it holds a 20 per cent stake.
Net profit for the six months was 57.9 per cent higher at $41.48 million, while revenue edged up 1.5 per cent to $960.15 million.
An interim dividend of 1.5 cents a share was declared, unchanged from the interim dividend a year ago. The dividend will be paid on June 12.
Mr Koh Poh Tiong, chairman of the F&N board executive committee, said: "The beverage landscape is expected to remain intensely competitive and challenging due to changing consumer preferences and regulations, which have an adverse impact on the soft drinks industry and put pressure on sales and margins.
"Leveraging the strengths of our core brands, we seek to drive growth of our business to full potential in the core markets of Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, as well as the new markets of Myanmar, Indonesia and Vietnam."
F&N shares closed one cent up at $2.03 yesterday.