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MEDIA and property company Eastern Holdings saw its net profit plummet 94.2 per cent for the first half ended Sept 30, 2014, but chose to declare a relatively hefty special dividend of 13 Singapore cents a share for the period.
The generous payout is the result of the company's decision to share the substantial investment gains it made on certain properties in the financial year ended March 31, 2014 - marking the first time Eastern has declared a dividend for several financial periods.
For the six months ended Sept 30, 2014, the company reported a 72.3 per cent jump in revenue to S$14.4 million. It said this was due mainly to it being able to recognise revenue, under the percentage-of-completion method, from an earlier sale of four residential units of its Grove Residence development project.
Its net profit attributable to shareholders was down to S$1.1 million, from S$19.1 million the year before - because the year-ago period contained a gain on disposal of investment properties amounting to S$18.9 million.
To share that gain, Eastern Holdings has declared a one-off special dividend of 13 cents a share, to be paid on Dec 17.
Its shares closed down 3.5 cents at 30.5 cents on Thursday.