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BBR Q2 net loss widens to S$3.5m

CONSTRUCTION firm BBR Holdings' net loss widened to S$3.5 million for the second quarter ended June 30, from S$2.2 million in the year-ago period, it reported on Friday after the market closed.

Revenue was down 39.6 per cent to S$29.6 million from S$49 million, due to lower construction activities in both the general construction and specialised engineering segments. BBR's property development segment also saw no sales in the quarter as all development units were sold.

Gross profit margin improved, however, to 9.9 per cent from 7.2 per cent previously.

Loss per share for the quarter was 1.09 Singapore cents, compared to 0.7 Singapore cent in the year-ago period.

With the latest quarterly results, BBR saw a first-half net loss of S$5.1 million, compared to net profit of S$2.6 million for the first half of FY 2017. First-half revenue was S$70.3 million, down 10.5 per cent from S$78.5 million.

In its results release, BBR said that the industry outlook remains challenging in the next 12 months with increasing competition, labour shortages and rising business costs. It expects construction demand to remain weak, with tenders continuing to be challenging in the near term and bid prices remaining competitive at compressed margins.

"The group will continue to focus on its core businesses by leveraging its strong track record in building construction and civil engineering to secure more projects, as well as enhancing cost effectiveness and efficiency optimisation in the management of on-going projects," said BBR, adding that it will continue to explore opportunities locally and in the region, particularly in Thailand.

Its construction order book currently stands at S$165 million with projects predominantly in Singapore and Malaysia.

Chief executive officer Andrew Tan highlighted the group's obtaining of Temporary Occupancy Permit for The Wisteria and Wisteria Mall, a mixed development in Yishun. All 216 residential units have been sold, and the commercial mall has an occupancy rate of over 80 per cent.

"Moving forward, the acquisition of Goh and Goh Building, which is situated at Upper Bukit Timah Road, will provide the new impetus for our property development business," he added.

BBR shares closed down 0.4 Singapore cent or 2 per cent at 19.5 Singapore cents on Friday before the results release.