Stocks to watch: Olam, ComfortGelGro, Mapletree Commercial Trust, UIC, FCT, AA Reit

The Singapore Exchange Centre in Shenton Way.
The Singapore Exchange Centre in Shenton Way. ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG

SINGAPORE - The following companies saw new developments that may affect trading of their shares on Wednesday (April 24):

Olam International: Agri and food giant Olam has submitted a binding offer to fully acquire Nigerian flour and pasta manufacturer Dangote Flour Mills (DFM) for 130 billion naira (S$491.09 million). The proposed transaction would include DFM's five flour and pasta manufacturing facilities and its logistics capabilities, including access to the ports of Apapa and Calabar. It is part of Olam's strategy to strengthen its portfolio by investing in proven businesses where it has consistently performed and gained market-leading positions, the company said. Olam currently operates wheat milling and flour and pasta manufacturing in Nigeria and Sub-Saharan Africa. Olam shares closed flat at $1.92 on Tuesday, before this announcement.

ComfortDelGro Corporation: ComfortGelGro is buying Australian bus service operator B&E Blanch Pte Ltd for A$28.3 million (S$27.5 million). The company, known as Blanch's Bus Company and Brunswick Valley Coaches, has a fleet of 48 buses and coaches and manages three depots in New South Wales. The deal amount is about 7.6 times Ebitda (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation), and will be financed with a mix of debt and internal funds. Completion is expected by May 31, ComfortGelGro said. Its shares closed up 1.15 per cent or three cents to $2.64 on Tuesday before the announcement.

Mapletree Commercial Trust (MCT): MCT on Tuesday posted distribution per unit (DPU) of 2.31 Singapore cents for the fourth quarter ended March 31, up 1.8 per cent from 2.27 cents a year ago. Net property income (NPI) rose 3.9 per cent to $87.56 million, on sustained earnings growth from VivoCity and higher gross revenue and NPI from its office properties. Income available for distribution was up 3.1 per cent to $66.86 million. For the full year, NPI improved 2.6 per cent to $347.63 million, while income available for distribution was up 1.4 per cent to $264.03 million. The total payout for the year is 9.14 cents per share. MCT units closed at $1.84, down 1.6 per cent, or three cents before the release of its results.

United Industrial Corp (UIC): Mainboard-listed UIC flush from its coup in consolidating ownership of Marina Square, turned in first-quarter earnings growth on Tuesday. Net profit for the three months to March 31 swelled by 35 per cent year-on-year to $81.1 million. Revenue rose 12 per cent to $185.3 million on growth in its property and information technology business segments. Turnover from hotel operations stayed flat. UIC got a hefty boost from its share of associated companies' results, which almost quadrupled to $28.7 million and more than made up for a slump in joint-venture contributions. Earnings per share stood at 5.7 Singapore cents against 4.2 Singapore cents in the year prior, while net asset value came in at $4.81 a share compared with $4.74 as at Dec 31, 2018. No dividend was declared for the period, unchanged from the year before. UIC closed up by $0.01 or 0.32 per cent at $3.11 on Tuesday before the results were released.

Frasers Centrepoint Trust (FCT): Higher portfolio occupancy rate of its properties, increased revenue from Northpoint City and Changi City Point, and lower property expenses delivered a second-quarter boost to retail landlord FCT. DPU for the three months ended March 31, came in at 3.137 cents, up 1.2 per cent from 3.10 cents in the year-ago period. Gross revenue rose 2.3 per cent to $49.7 million mainly due to higher revenue from Northpoint City North Wing and Changi City Point, while net property income grew 4.8 per cent to $36.4 million. Units in FCT closed at $2.36 on Tuesday, down 0.4 per cent, or one cent.

Aims Apac Reit (AA Reit): AA Reit posted a higher DPU of 2.75 cents for its fourth quarter ending March 31, up 4.6 per cent from the year-ago period. NPI rose 15 per cent year on year to $20.3 million, while revenue increased 6.7 per cent to $29.9 million. AA Reit units closed unchanged at $1.40 on Tuesday.