Sheng Siong Q4 profit jumps 84.9% to $32.1 million

For the full year, Sheng Siong's net profit was S$139.1 million. PHOTO: BERITA HARIAN

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) - Supermarket operator Sheng Siong on Wednesday posted a net profit of S$32.1 million for the fourth quarter ended Dec 31, up 84.9 per cent from S$17.4 million a year ago.

It was recently reported that Sheng Siong is offering some employees up to 16 months' bonus, with eight months' bonus for most staff in general, in recognition of their hard work.

Riding on elevated demand driven by the pandemic, revenue rose 28.8 per cent to S$319.3 million from S$247.9 million in Q4 2019. The increase was attributed to better performance at existing stores (18.2 percentage points) and new stores opened in 2020 (10.6 percentage points).

Earnings per share stood at 2.13 Singapore cents, up from 1.16 cents previously.

For the full year, Sheng Siong's net profit was S$139.1 million, or 83.7 per cent higher than the S$75.8 million reported for FY2019.

Full-year revenue was S$1.4 billion, a 40.6 per cent improvement from S$991.3 million a year ago. About two thirds of this increase (29.1 percentage points) was attributed to existing stores; the remainder was largely contributed by new stores.

Staff costs accounted for most of a 41.9 per cent increase in administrative expenses, amounting to S$67.8 million of the S$72.6 million spent. This was because Sheng Siong hired additional staff to cope with pandemic-related measures, made higher provision for bonuses and paid staff an additional one month of salary in Q2 2020.

Earnings per share surged to 9.22 cents from 5.04 cents.

The board is proposing a final dividend of 3 cents per share, to be paid on May 20. Last year, Sheng Siong paid out a final dividend of 1.8 cent per share for Q4.

The total dividend for FY2020 would be 6.5 cents per share, or about 70.5 per cent payout of the group's net profit after tax.

Shares of Sheng Siong closed at S$1.57 on Wednesday, down S$0.03 or 1.88 per cent.

Follow ST on LinkedIn and stay updated on the latest career news, insights and more.