Higher soft drink and dairy sales boosted third-quarter earnings at Fraser & Neave (F&N), the company reported yesterday.
Net profit came in at $54.8 million for the three months to June 30, up 9 per cent from the same period a year earlier. Revenue rose 6.7 per cent to $489.7 million.
Turnover from the food and beverage division rose 7 per cent to $427.3 million, with beverages increasing by 11.6 per cent and dairies up 5.5 per cent.
Profit before interest and tax (PBIT) from beverages more than doubled to $6.7 million, on the back of revenue and margin growth in the Malaysia and Singapore soft drinks business.
In Malaysia, soft drinks growth was lifted by a successful Hari Raya festive campaign and trade loading of existing and new healthier products. Soft drinks growth in Singapore was due to improved sales of 100Plus and its variants.
PBIT from the dairies division rose 4.8 per cent to $77.2 million, due mainly to dairies in Thailand, where revenue rose. Marketing spend also fell and input costs were favourable.
AT A GLANCE
$489.7 million (+6.7%)
$54.8 million (+9%)
PBIT from the publishing and printing division was $7.4 million, reversing a loss of $4.7 million last year.
This was due to higher margins, prudent cost management and the maiden profit contribution from the newly acquired Print Lab, as well as non-operating income from the sale of non-core assets.
Earnings per share edged up to 3.8 cents from 3.5 cents in the third quarter last year.
Net asset value per share was $1.97 as at June 30, up from $1.95 as at Sept 30 last year.
F&N said yesterday: "The group... expects to increase advertising and promotion investments in the last quarter of this financial year."