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CapitaLand Q4 profit jumps 71.2% to S$475.7m

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The higher earnings were also underpinned by greater contributions from residential projects in China, as well as newly acquired and operational properties, CapitaLand said.

BETTER operating performance, higher gains from asset recycling, and fair value gains from revaluations of its investment properties boosted CapitaLand's results for the fourth quarter. 

For the three months ended Dec 31, net profit rose 71.2 per cent to S$475.7 million, from S$277.8 million last year.

The higher earnings were also underpinned by greater contributions from residential projects in China, as well as newly acquired and operational properties, CapitaLand said.  

On a per share basis, earnings came in at 11.4 Singapore cents for the quarter, up from 6.5 cents a year earlier. 

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Revenue climbed 34 per cent to S$1.62 billion, up from S$1.21 billion for the year-ago period. This was mainly due to higher handover of units from residential projects in China and Vietnam, as well as rental revenue from newly acquired or operational properties in Singapore, China, Germany and the US, the group said. 

In particular, residential projects which contributed to the revenue this quarter were Vermont Hills in Beijing, New Horizon in Shanghai and Century Park East in Chengdu, as well as Sky Habitat and The Interlace in Singapore. Collectively, the two core markets of Singapore and China accounted for 75.9 per cent of the group's revenue, up from 74.5 per cent for the year-ago quarter. 

The board is proposing a dividend of 12 Singapore cents a share for FY2018, unchanged from the previous financial year. 

For the full-year, net profit was up 12.3 per cent to S$1.76 billion, as revenue rose 21.3 per cent to S$5.6 billion. 

This translated to an earnings per share of 42.1 Singapore cents for the 12 months ended Dec 31, up from 37 cents in the preceding year. 

Overall, the group noted that having a "diversified asset base with strong operating expertise" has allowed it to navigate "macroeconomic uncertainties" that affected market and business sentiments in financial year 2018. CapitaLand achieved a return of equity (ROE) of 9.3 per cent, up 0.7 per cent from an ROE of 8.6 per cent for FY2017.

Looking ahead, the group added that it will seek "new growth drivers" to bring it into the next phase of growth, as it continues to strengthen its existing business and asset portfolio.

Said president and group CEO, Lee Chee Koon: "In this regard, we have announced the proposed acquisition of Ascendas-Singbridge to create Asia's largest diversified real estate group with assets under management of over S$116 billion. The transaction will strengthen our presence and pipeline in our core markets – Singapore and China. It will give us immediate scale in new economy sectors such as logistics and business parks, and in growth markets such as India, the US and Europe."

As at 11.04am on Wednesday, shares of CapitaLand were trading at S$3.43 apiece, up 1.2 per cent, or four Singapore cents.