Business

Keppel Corp reports 39% drop in Q2 profit

Earnings plunged at Keppel Corporation in the second quarter, due in large part to absence of gains from collective sales of development projects, it announced yesterday.

Net profit came in at $153 million for the three months to June 30, down 39 per cent on the same period last year.

Earnings per share declined by the same magnitude, down 39 per cent to 8.4 cents from 13.7 cents. The earnings decline came despite a 17 per cent year-on-year rise in revenue to $1.78 billion.

All divisions registered higher revenues during the quarter except the offshore and marine unit.

Keppel Corp declared an interim cash dividend of eight cents a share for the first half, with the dividend payable on Aug 6.Net asset value per share dipped marginally to $6.12 as at June 30, compared with a (restated) $6.20 six months earlier.

Keppel Corp disclosed that telco M1 netted more than 15,000 new customers within a month of launching a simplified plan in May to replace its previous 19 plans.

This took M1's base to 2.25 million customers as at June 30, an increase of about 80,000 year on year.

Keppel Corp posted net profit of $356 million for the first half, 39 per cent below the $586 million achieved a year earlier. This was also mainly due to lower contributions from collective sales.

Chief executive Loh Chin Hua said in a results briefing webcast that the US-China trade tensions have had a limited, direct impact on the group.

If the conflicts worsen, Keppel Corp said it is not only prepared to deal with the possible challenges, but also to seize opportunities that may arise.

Keppel Corp shares closed down 1.64 per cent to $6.59 before results were released yesterday. - THE STRAITS TIMES

BUSINESS & FINANCE