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GP Industries posts Q4 net profit of S$2.33m, reverses year-ago loss

MAINBOARD-LISTED battery maker GP Industries posted net profit of S$2.33 million for the fourth quarter ended March 31, turning around from a S$7 million loss in the year-ago period, it reported in a results release on Tuesday.

Contributing to this was a narrowed exchange loss of S$113,000 for the quarter, compared with S$4.79 million in the year-ago period, as the US dollar strengthened against the Chinese yuan. Revenue was up 5.5 per cent year-on-year at S$276.9 million, while gross profit rose 17.1 per cent to S$66.2 million.

Earnings per share for the quarter was 0.48 Singapore cent, compared with a loss per share of 1.45 Singapore cents in the year-ago period.

GP Industries has declared a final dividend of 2.25 Singapore cents per ordinary share, up from 1.75 cents in the year-ago period.

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The fourth-quarter figures took full-year net profit to S$29.2 million, up 25.5 per cent from S$23.2 million the year before.

GP Industries noted uncertainties for its business outlook due to the trade dispute between the United States and China, as well as Brexit. Softening global growth may also affect demand for some of its products, it added.

Some 14.3 per cent of the group's business is subject to US tariffs. GP Industries said it is working with customers in the US "on the best response to the increased import costs". It also noted that the US's proposed enlarged tariff scheme for all made-in-China products, if implemented, could affect other products.

"To minimise the impact of the US import tariffs, the group is rapidly expanding the capacity of its manufacturing facilities in Malaysia and Vietnam and exploring other cooperation opportunities outside China to take up more of the group's US export businesses," it said.

GP Industries shares closed up 0.5 Singapore cent or 0.88 per cent at 57.5 Singapore cents on Tuesday.