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Jardine C&C FY15 net profit falls 16%

JARDINE Cycle & Carriage posted a 16 per cent drop in net profit to US$688 million for the year ended December 2015 from US$820 million a year ago.

This included a net non-trading gain of US$50 million, which included the reversal of an impairment charge of US$43 million in respect of a Vietnam associate versus a net non-trading gain of US$27 million a year ago.

Revenue came in 16 per cent lower at US$15.7 billion from US$18.7 billion a year ago.

Astra, its Indonesia-based automotive company, saw earnings fall on the back of lower profit contributions from all major business segments amid challenging trading conditions.

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Astra's contribution was further impacted on translation of its rupiah profit into US dollars but partly offset by strong results from the direct motor interests and contributions from new businesses.

Earnings per share stood at 169 US cents from 217 US cents a year ago.

The board has proposed a final dividend of 51 US cents versus 67 US cents in 2014.

Jardine C&C chairman Ben Keswick said the group was cautious about the outlook for the current year given the uncertain external macro-economic environment in the region.

Even so, he added that its Indonesia-based automotive company, Astra's strong cash generation and sound balance sheet enabled it to invest for the future and benefit from improvement in trading conditions.

The group's direct motor interests will face continuing pressure on margins, he added.

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