Business

SBS Transit Q2
net profit leaps 75.3% to $12.7m

SBS Transit posted a 75.3 per cent jump in second quarter net profit to $12.7 million, fuelled by better margins from the bus contracting model and higher rail ridership.

For the second quarter ended June 30, the ComfortDelGro-owned transport operator reported a 7 per cent jump in revenue to $287.8 million compared with the same period a year ago, helped in part by lower finance costs.

Earnings per share were 4.09 cents, up from 2.34 cents in the previous corresponding quarter. The group's net asset value per share was $1.40 as of June 30, up from $1.35 on Dec 31 last year.

An interim dividend of 3.65 cents was declared for the second quarter, up from 2.35 cents a year ago.

For the quarter, SBS Transit's total operating costs rose 4.7 per cent to $271.6 million but operating profit surged 68 per cent to $16.2 million.

The largest cost component - staff costs - gained 10 per cent to $153.4 million. The second largest - repairs and maintenance - rose 4.1 per cent to $34.5 million. But fuel and electricity costs fell 10.4 per cent to $29.9 million.

Revenue from public transport services gained 8.4 per cent to $274.4 million for the quarter, from $253.2 million a year ago, boosted by the transition to the bus contracting model and higher ridership from rail services.

Under the model, the Government assumes ownership of all fixed and operating assets and operators are paid a fixed sum to run services.

For the quarter, average daily ridership for the Downtown Line grew by 14.1 per cent to 242,000 passenger trips. Daily ridership for the North-East Line grew by 1.4 per cent to 566,000 trips.

Revenue from commercial services slipped 15.3 per cent to $13.4 million due mainly to lower advertising revenue.

Shares of SBS Transit closed 0.4 per cent or one cent higher at $2.59, ahead of the results release. - THE STRAITS TIMES

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