Company Notes 2018.02.16

CSC Steel Q4 FY2017 Results

Driven by increasing prices of steel making raw materials such as iron ores and coking cokes, coupled with China’s continued efforts in shutting down its rudimentary and polluting steel mills, steel prices are expected to remain firm at least until the first half of 2018. However, steel market for the second half of 2018 becomes less predictable and very much dependent on the actions to be taken by Trump Administration on the outcomes of section 232 investigation. The Group expects business volume for the first quarter of 2018 to be impacted by Chinese New Year festivities and the rest of 2018 to remain challenging as the Malaysia steel markets continue to be liberalized and new steel mills come on stream within ASEAN countries taking advantage of the unimpeded access to markets within ASEAN under
the ASEAN Free Trade Agreement.


Hexza Q2 FY2018 Results

Our resins segment is expected to continue to operate in a challenging environment due to higher raw material prices that may affect our profit margin. Nevertheless, we will work on passing on incremental cost to customers to cushion the impact of higher raw material prices.

Our ethanol segment will feel the full year impact of the excise duty hike in October 2016, which has affected sales of our potable alcohol. We will continue to intensify our marketing efforts and work on increasing sales of higher margin products.


Weida Q3 FY2018 Results

The Group’s polyethylene culverts are increasingly being accepted by both the government sector in road construction projects, and the private sector especially oil palm plantations for drainage infrastructure.

The growing emphasis on environmental sustainability and green technology also bodes well for the Group. Over the years, the Group has significantly grown and enhanced its human and engineering capital, via active involvement and collaboration with a network of established international organisations. The Group has been successfully playing, and will continue to play, the role as a provider of environmental engineering solutions; such as in the field of water and wastewater treatment, septic sludge treatment and renewable energy.

Elsoft to ship more test equipment in first half-year

“Most of the orders come from the smart device segment, followed by the automotive and general lighting industries. They will go to customers in the Asia-Pacific. For the first half of 2017, about 60% of the orders were for the automotive segment. The shipment for the first half of 2017 was about RM30mil. However, the first quarters of 2016, 2017, and 2018 had proven to be unusual.”


Wegmans aims to boost exports after doubling capacity

The completion of Wegmans’ new plant, slated for 4Q19, is projected to increase the group’s annual production capacity to 960,000 units of chairs and 380,000 units of tables for the dining room, living room and bedroom, according to the IPO prospectus.

Wegmans aims to start exporting its products to more European countries besides expanding its presence in existing markets following the increase in its capacity, said the group’s executive director Collin Law at the launch of the group’s prospectus yesterday.

“For FY16, approximately 98.42% of revenue and 9.53% of purchases were denominated in US dollars,” Wegmans said. The remaining sales and purchases were recorded in ringgit.

An 84.22% foreign composition of its workforce may also squeeze Wegmans’ margins going forward as it had to pay the new levy for foreign workers since Jan 1.


Ninja Van to use funds raised to boost Malaysian ops

“At present, we have 200 points which are all located in the Klang Valley,” said the group’s country head for Malaysia Adzim Halim. We plan to establish footholds in Johor Baru, Penang, Melaka, Negeri Sembilan and Kuantan. We’re looking to improve our sorting capacity by at least four times what it is now by investing in an automated parcel-sorting machine.”

A quick check on Ninja Logistics Sdn Bhd’s financial statements show that the company’s revenue for financial year 2016 (FY16) soared more than five times to RM6.77 million from RM913,589 in FY15. However, its loss after tax widened to RM6.09 million in FY16 versus RM1.07 million in FY15.

Singapore may start taxing Amazon and Lazada

BMI Research projects the region’s six biggest economies will boost e-commerce to $64.8 billion in 2021 from $37.7 billion last year, while Credit Suisse Group AG estimates that online shopping growth could outpace that of traditional retailers by six to 10 times over the next few years.

The Customs Department in Malaysia has been talking about plans around taxing foreign e-commerce players for months. While nothing is in hand yet, BMI Research’s Singh sees Malaysia following Singapore’s lead with a 6 percent levy on these online providers.


Chinese tourists are taking over the Earth, one selfie at a time

China already accounts for more than a fifth of the money spent by outbound tourists, twice as much as the next-biggest spender, the US, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization. And the Chinese have barely started — only around 5% of them even have passports, and the government is issuing about 10 million new travel documents every year.

The shift is transforming the region, unleashing more than US$100 billion in infrastructure spending for bigger airports and jet fleets, new railways, hotels and theme parks. The effects of this boom include soaring property prices, stress on the environment and an avalanche of apps and innovations that reimagine the way we experience the world.


‘Home ownership is not for everyone’

“Home ownership is not for everyone. There’s not a single country in the world that has 100% home ownership. Usually, you have a home ownership penetration of about 75%, and the rest are rentals for various reasons. Some can afford to be homeowners but by choice want to be renters. Some cannot yet afford to be homeowners because they are at the start of their careers. We should, therefore, approach housing with a range of solutions rather than a specific one-size-fits-all policy that doesn’t help everyone equally.”

“If you start subsidising from the onset before fixing the way the housing system addresses factors such as access to financing, all you would be subsidising are the inefficiencies of the market. Fix the problem first. This would then enable governments to use the same amount of money typically used to subsidise housing to reach a much larger number of people.”

Company Notes 2017.11.10

PIE Industrial Q3 FY2017 Results

One major customer of our EMS segment changed its receiving system in March 2017. As there was a major technical glitch discovered in their new system, the customer is unable to process their payments to the Group. Based on our Group’s policy on credit control, we are required to provide impairment for doubtful debts which are overdue over a certain period, therefore a provision of RM11.243 million is made during this quarter. Management estimates that these debts will be able to collect by the fourth quarter and maintaining such provision during this quarter is necessary in accordance with our Group’s policy.

The major source of revenue and earning of the Group comes from its manufacturing segment (98%). For EMS activities (77%), orders are expected to increase steadily from existing customers and potential customers through its fully built-up vertical integrated manufacturing facilities which have been in operation for the past 5 years.

Revenue derived from the manufacturing activity of raw wire & cable (18%) will continue to grow, with consistent profit margin for the rest of the financial year. The cost of its two main raw material i.e copper and PVC are expected to increase in the near future, enhancing its selling price and securing more orders from its customers.


Hartalega Q2 FY2018 Results

Prospects for the rubber glove manufacturing sector remain strong with increasing demand arising from switching trends towards nitrile glove. Nitrile glove now accounts for 61% of Malaysian rubber glove export. Hartalega NGC is on-schedule to meet this rising demand with progressive commissioning of Plant 4 and started the construction of Plant 5. The increasing contribution of NGC to Group sales revenues would help to consolidate margins and contribute further to Group earnings.


Tasek Q3 FY2017 Results

The Board expect the prospects for the rest of the financial year to remain challenging due to the weak prices of cement caused by the intense pricing competition and over capacity. Infrastructure roll-outs may be insufficient to make up for the present lull in demand for cement primarily caused by the soft property market.


Shangri-La Hotels Malaysia Q3 FY2017 Results

In particular, Shangri-La Hotel Kuala Lumpur is expected to achieve improved operating results for 2017 as it continues to reap the benefits of its newly renovated banqueting facilities and all-day dining restaurant. In addition, Hotel Jen Penang should continue to grow well, after the completion of its major renovation programme in June 2017. The hotel’s enhanced room product and facilities should support further increases in occupancy and room rates.


Petronas Dagangan Q3 FY2017 Results

In the current quarter ended 30 September 2017, the Group has disposed 100% equity interest in a subsidiary, PETRONAS Energy Philippines, Inc (“PEPI”) and 40% equity interest in an associated company, Duta Inc to P-H-O-E-N-I-X Petroleum Philippines, Inc., an external party of the Group for a fair value consideration of RM560.5 million resulting in a gain on disposal of RM424.6 million.

Malaysian CAB’s Indonesian venture to start

While the construction of the entire farm will take up to five years, it is hoped that by the second year of construction, the Indonesian operations will have the capacity to produce some four million broilers per month and three million eggs per day.

“According to an Orissa International report, global poultry consumption is predicted to grow by 27% to 28 million tonnes by 2023 – with 40% of that growth in Asia. In South-East Asia, the growth of incomes, population, urbanisation has translated into a growth of demand for animal products. The surge in demand for animal protein resulted in a significant increase of meat – mainly poultry and pork. Poultry is the largest livestock sector in Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia. Malaysia’s poultry meat per capita consumption is among the highest in the world, consumed 1.8 million chickens and 2.8 million chicken eggs daily.”

“Indonesian poultry production is estimated at €10bil (RM49bil) in 2015 with broiler meat accounting for three-quarters of the total. The poultry meat sector is projected to grow 70%-90% by 2020 if GDP increases by 6% per annum. The layer industry is also projected to grow at 50%-60% of the broiler sector.”


Not your typical manufacturer

Being a Tier-1 manufacturer, with research and development (R&D) and engineering capabilities that match that of a design house’s, Lim said Salutica co-develops products with brand owners instead of just manufacturing based on specifications given by clients.

However, maintaining that Tier-1 manufacture’s standard comes with a high cost, Lim admitted. Unlike many second- or third-tier manufacturers, Salutica is Responsible Business Alliance (RBA)-compliant, a code of conduct that Lim said the top 100 technology companies in the world — including many of its customers — subscribe to and impose on their Tier 1 suppliers.

“Fobo Ultra for commercial vehicles was more complicated than we initially thought. Negotiations with fleets and logistics firms took longer than expected because most fleet owners were sceptical about a product that was made in Malaysia. But [sales] have picked up slightly at home,” said Lim. All MRT (mass rapid transit) feeder buses in Malaysia under the Volvo brand, according to him, have been equipped with Fobo Ultra since the end of last year.


Kronologi to enlarge footprint through Quantum

“With this development, we could leverage on the collective experience of the enlarged team for best practices for vertical solutions and provide additional analytics, which include artificial intelligence. Currently, we’re collaborating with some other technology players to provide these additional solutions. We’re anticipating some form of AI solutions by next year but it’s an ongoing process for us.”

“Moving forward, once the acquisition is completed, Hong Kong will play an important role. Similarly, earnings growth should be quite evenly distributed among Singapore, India, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia (excluding Singapore).”


Hexza’s bottom-line to take a hit from RM28.5mil provision

This is not the first time Hexza has made an impairment loss of finance lease receivable due to the Tembusu Industries Pte Ltd’s payment default. In FY17, the Ipoh-based company made an impairment loss amounting to RM6.95mil, being the amount due but not paid by the lessee.

To recap, on Jan 30, 2015, Hexza inked an agreement with Tembusu to buy part of the equipment for a 8MW heavy fuel oil power generation system located in Myanmar from Tembusu for US$6mil (RM25.3mil), after which Tembusu would lease back the equipment from Hexza at a monthly rental of US$130.205 (RM549,937) for 10 years.


F&N poised for stronger FY18 after restructuring

“Now we want to build exports as our third pillar on top of our existing markets in Malaysia and Thailand,” said Lim. The company is looking to achieve stronger top and bottom lines — at levels seen in FY16 — next year, he added. “We have set a target for annual exports to hit RM500 million by FY20,” said Lim. The company is not looking to export excess capacity, he said, but will instead increase its output for the segment.

F&N is undergoing a three-year RM500 million capacity expansion plan which it initiated in FY17. It has completed four milestones with five more upgrades to go, which Lim said are on track to be completed separately in FY18 and FY19.

“We are also de-bottlenecking some facilities. These require much smaller capex (capital expenditure) at around RM5 million per project,” said Lim. “While the value is smaller, a simple upgrade can increase the annual output of our dairy product manufacturing plant in Pulau lndah by one million crates, for example,” he added.

F&N foresees the bulk of its exports to revolve around dairy products, said Lim, which provide higher margin — at between 10% and 12% — compared with other products such as packed beverages.

Over-regulation a hurdle for free zone operators

The PKFZ was initially modelled after Dubai’s Jebel Ali Free Zone, which is such a success that it contributed over 20% of Dubai’s gross domestic product. More than 30 other free zones have been set up in the United Arab Emirates, which were modelled after it.

The GST Act is deemed to have superseded the Free Zone Act 1990, taking away some advantages available under the Free Zone Act for free trade zones such as the PKFZ.

“So today, as far as free zones are concerned, the supply of goods is not an issue, but [the] supply of services is — as tax is applicable. They (customs) say it can be claimed back. But do you understand how business is done in the free [trade] zone? There are foreigners there. If you tell them that in order for them to claim back the tax, you have to employ an agent and other requirements, they will say ‘Why is it so difficult? In Singapore, there is no such issue’.”

Malaysia signals shift to tightening stance on growth view

Southeast Asian policy makers face rising pressure to start preparing for rate increases in the face of higher U.S. borrowing costs. Bank Negara Malaysia is forecast by economists as among the first to move. The economy is stronger with the government predicting growth of at least 5 percent until 2018 as it boosts infrastructure.

Inflation quickened to a five-month high of 4.3 percent in September, but is projected by the government to average between 3 percent and 4 percent this year. A general election due to be held by August 2018 is among reasons the central bank may hold off from raising borrowing costs just yet.


Focus on affordable housing may hurt private developers

“Over the past three years, government agencies’ participation filled the gaps nicely as private developers went through a gestation period to move towards the smaller-margin affordable housing segment. But moving forward, when supply keeps up with demand, government agencies and private developers will begin to compete on an unlevel playing field.”


Malaysia’s giving working moms a better maternity deal than U.S.

In a country where women are likely to drop out of the labor force when they have children, Najib is making a push to reverse that. He’s giving women a one-year tax exemption if they return to work after a break of two years or more, offering longer paid maternity leave for some and reducing working hours for others. In the U.S., there’s no national requirement for paid maternity leave.

Malaysia is losing out to low-cost and low-end manufacturing newcomers like Vietnam, but lacks the kind of skills and innovation that’s propelled Singapore and South Korea to more advanced status. Najib’s target is to make Malaysia a high-income country in the next three years, a feat that would require boosting per-capita income to $12,476 — which is the level the World Bank uses to define a high-income nation — from about $10,000 now.

Company Notes 2017.08.25 (Part 3)

Kossan Rubber Industries Q2 FY2017 Results

With the completion of the commissioning of Plant 16 in end-July, the existing annual glove production capacity of the Group has since enlarged to 25 billion pieces, an increase of 3.0 billion pieces of nitrile gloves with the patented Low Derma technology. This plant is expected to contribute to the Group’s earnings gradually from the end of third quarter onward.

Keeping up with the expansion momentum and in need of new glove capacity to cater for increasing demand for the Low Derma technology nitrile gloves, the Group has since commenced the construction works for Plant 17 and 18. These 2 new plants which are equipped with high speed dipping technology and a high degree of automation are capable of producing up to 4.5 billion pieces (1.5 and 3.0 billion pieces respectively) of nitrile gloves per annum once completed in 2018.

The construction works of the integrated Research and Development cum Training Centre (“RDTC”) are progressing well and are expected to complete by end of the year. The RDTC once completed, will propel the Group to another level of achievement and breakthrough of the Group’s R&D efforts as the centre will focus on all areas of new innovations and quality improvements of our products. It will also involve research into engineering and robotic implementations to provide higher automation systems to new and existing facilities with the aim of lowering dependence on manpower.


Lee Swee Kiat Q2 FY2017 Results

The expansion and modernization project for our latex division is near completion. The new line would potentially increase our capacity by 30% and increase the varieties of latex pillows in productions.

Key Raw Material – Centrifuged latex price which had risen by more than 80% in Quarter 1 for the current financial year, has softened recently. The lower latex price would be beneficial to the Group’s margin in the coming months.

The Group is negotiating to acquire the plant & machineries of a small bedding company. The Group would also absorb the key managers as well as a group of skilled production workers from that company.


Perak Transit Q2 FY2017 Results

The outlook of integrated public transportation terminal operations segment is expected to the favorable driven by the Group’s plans for expansion in other parts of Perak, whereby the construction of the Terminal Kampar has commenced and it is on schedule. It is expected to be completed by the 4th quarter of 2018. In addition to Terminal Kampar, the Group’s plans include similar integrated public transportation terminal in Bidor and Tronoh. As of this juncture, the Group is unable to determine the construction cost for the terminals to be built as the construction project is still at its preliminary stage and the approvals for construction have yet to be obtained from the relevant authorities.


Thong Guan Industries Q2 FY2017 Results

The group is scheduled to commission its second nano layer stretch film line and its 8th PVC food wrap line during the current quarter.


GFM Services Q2 FY2017 Results

The Pangkalan Ikan Central Sdn Bhd LKIM deep sea fishing port facilities management contract located at Tanjong Bako, Kuching Sarawak commence operations on 22 July 2017. This project will contribute positively to the Group earnings this year.


Sime Darby Q4 FY2017 Results

Accordingly, the results of the Plantation and Property businesses have been classified as Discontinuing Operations and, upon completion of the Proposal, both Sime Darby Plantation Berhad and Sime Darby Property Berhad would be deconsolidated from the Sime Darby Berhad Group. Going forward, the Group’s businesses would be Industrial, Motors, Logistics and Others.


Luster Industries Q2 FY2017 Results

With the successful rationalization of the manufacturing business and successfully position itself to be an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), manufacturing segment has shown positive growth in profitability.

Pan Cambodian Lottery Corporation Limited (PCL), a 60% owned subsidiary of LIB has successfully grow the business in gaming & leisure segment by increasing the network of agents. The Group is also looking at strategy to increase the number of the digit game products. As for the plan to establish a gaming entertainment center, PCL is looking at the option of leasing the land and building and is currently in the process of discussion with several gaming operators.


DRB-HICOM Q1 FY2018

In line with DRB-HICOM’s effort to turnaround PROTON, the Group had on 23 June 2017 entered into a strategic collaboration with Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co., Ltd. (“ZGH”) vide a share subscription agreement for ZGH to acquire 49.9% equity interest in PROTON Holdings Berhad (“PROTON”) and for PROTON to divest its indirect 100% entire stake in Lotus Advance Technologies Sdn. Bhd. to ZGH and Etika Automotive Sdn. Bhd. The entry of ZGH as the Strategic Partner is expected to improve PROTON’s competitiveness through infusion of competitive products and technology, advanced manufacturing systems, quality and brand confidence which will allow PROTON to improve its sales domestically and globally especially in South East Asia and the right hand drive markets. In addition, PROTON will also be able to leverage on ZGH Group’s advanced technology, global resources through its extensive business network as well as global best practices. An Extraordinary General Meeting will be convened on 30 August 2017 to seek the shareholders’ approval on the above mentioned transactions.


OpenSys Q2 FY2017 Results

For the remainder of this year, we will continue to roll out even more Cash Recycling Machine from the robust orders we have received in the second quarter of this year.


Muda Holdings Q2 FY2017

The Board believes that the upward price trend of industrial paper will support the domestic selling price for the rest of the year. However, tight supply of waste paper in the domestic market which will translate into higher production cost, coupled with higher depreciation charge and interest cost from the new corrugating production line, will assert negative pressure on the profitability of the Manufacturing Division.


Mega First Q2 FY2017 Results

Being a coal fired thermal plant, the tightening environmental protection policies in China also have the effect of pushing up steam production cost. Heavy investments are necessary to add or modify existing plant and machinery to comply with the new emission standards. Earnings contribution from China is therefore expected to remain weak.


Transocean Holdings Q2 FY2017 Results

Logistics division derived revenues and profits mainly from multinational electronic factories shipments for “loose cargo” or consol cargo trucking services for the routes Pg/Sin/Pg and Pg/Thai/Pg. Continuous pull out of multinational factories from Malaysia particularly the electronic companies from Penang has reduced the cargo volumes and revenues. Furthermore, with the improved infrastructure of Air and Sea Ports in Malaysia, fewer importers and exporters are using Singapore Air and Sea Ports nowadays.

Traditional long haul chartered load sector required a large fleet of trucks operating with low margins.

The group had switched to car parts sector to improve revenues moving consol cargo from Thai/Mal/Sin. Steps also had been taken to convince existing customers to accept the “monthly price adjustments format” based on the average of weekly fuel price adjustment announced by the government to pass on the extra cost to the customers. The effect of the price adjustments will only materialize during the 3rd quarter.


Scicom MSC Q4 FY2017 Results

During the financial year, the Company recognized a tax incentive representing 70% tax exemption on its statutory income from outsourcing services. The Company’s achievement of the conditions and KPIs have been presented to the administrator, however, the assessment by the administrator has not been completed as at 30 June 2017. The Directors have assessed that the Company is able to meet the requirements for the tax incentive after taking into consideration that the Company has substantially met the stipulated conditions and KPIs, and their historical experience where confirmations from the administrator were obtained to recognize the tax incentive when conditions and KPIs were substantially met.

Therefore, the Directors are of the view that there is a reasonable basis for the Company to recognize the tax incentive during the financial year ended 30 June 2017.

Where the final outcome of the assessment of income tax exemption by the administrator is different from the Company’s assessment, this will result in higher income tax expense on the statutory income from outsourcing services recognized during the financial year.


Padini Holdings Q4 FY2017 Results

…the positive growth from the existing stores with 8% same stores sales growth… the opening of fourteen new stores during the current 12-month quarter.

There is an increase of RM22 million on inventories losses, inventory written-off and inventory written-down as compared to last financial year. This is an initiative of the management to embark on a more stringent implementation of the inventory policy with the use of stricter write off/ write down estimates. Excluded the effect of the additional inventories losses, the gross profit margin stood at 40.8%.


N2N Connect Q2 FY2017 Results

The acquisition of AFE, which was completed on 31 March 2017, enhanced our coverage in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines and the United States. With the addition of Hong Kong, Macau, and Vietnam resulting in N2N being one of the largest Asian base platform provider. The acquisition of AFE will positively contribute to the Group’s performance in the future. We are assessing a few more potential targets for acquisition to establish a Pan Asia presence and the network of inter broking activities powered by our latest platform.

The Philippines business is expanding beyond the provision of the platform to the Philippine Stock Exchange(“PSE”) as leading brokers are now coming directly to N2N to obtain a more advanced version of the trading system to complement the services currently obtained from N2N via PSE. New agreements are in the pipeline and more demonstration to prospects, including the Back Office Settlement system, which had gone live in April 2017.


Choo Bee Metal Industries Q2 FY2017 Results

Of late, flat strip products have begun to pick up in price prior to earlier moderation, mainly due to speculative buying activities in China’s futures market. The pick-up in prices will augur well for tubular products and manufacturers where they are expected to raise their selling prices for finished products in tandem with the rise in iron ore prices. However, global demand ex-China remains soft and as such, sustainability of this price increase remains uncertain.


Tomypak Holdings Q2 FY2017 Results

With the completion of the new plant and the successful commissioning of the first more advance and efficient new printing and lamination machines, the Group is in the midst of working with major existing customers and potential customers to qualify this new plant to service these customers. Upon the successful certification of this new production process, the Group expects the overall performance to improve.

Another three sets of advance and efficient machines are schedule to be delivered in the last quarter of 2017, which will be commissioned and ready for production towards the end of the first quarter of 2018. The Group expects these machines to further improve the overall productivity and efficiency.


Hexza Q4 FY2017 Results

Due to lower sales volume and taking into consideration the Excise Duties (Amendment) Order 2016, whereby the excise duty of potable alcohol will be levied on the finished products and paid by the bottlers, our ethanol division’s revenue, which previously included excise duty for potable alcohol, was 66.1% lower.

The impact of the steep hike in excise duty for potable alcohol is still being felt as manufacturers of locally bottled alcohol products continued to adjust to the new market dynamics. In view of the challenges in the potable alcohol market, our strategy is to intensify our marketing efforts and deepen customer relationship. Our potable alcohol sales may be affected by new regulation introduced by the government but we expect our ethanol division to remain profitable during the financial year ending 30th June 2018.