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Jardine Cycle & Carriage FY underlying net profit rises 12% to US$858m

GREATER contributions from its more than 50 per cent stake in Indonesian conglomerate Astra International lifted results for Jardine Cycle & Carriage (Jardine C&C) in its full financial year.

Underlying net profit rose 12 per cent to US$858 million from the year-ago period.

For the 12 months ended Dec 31, revenue increased 9.5 per cent to US$18.99 billion from the year-ago period. The expansion in revenue was due to revenue growth in most of Astra's businesses, it said. These included Astra's heavy equipment, mining, construction and energy, and financial services businesses.

Astra contributed US$719 million to the group's underlying profit. This was an increase of 15 per cent. Underlying profit per share rose 217 US cents from a restated 195 US cents in the year-ago period.

Dividend per share crept up to 87 US cents from 86 US cents in the year-ago period.

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However, the group did also account for net non-trading losses of US$438 million, principally unrealised fair-value losses related to non-current investments that arose from a new accounting standard.

Jardine C&C separately identifies non-trading items to provide greater understanding of the group's underlying business performance.

The group said: "Astra is likely to face a number of macroeconomic and commercial headwinds in 2019, while the group's Direct Motor Interests and Other Strategic Interests may also see slower growth."

It also announced that Chang See Hiang will retire as director after the upcoming annual general meeting in April this year. Steven Phan, a chartered accountant, will join the board as independent director in April. Also, Adrian Teng will step down as group finance director on March 31 to pursue other interests and opportunities outside the company, to be succeeded starting April 1 by Stephen Gore, currently the chief financial officer of Jardine Pacific and Jardine Motors.

Jardine C&C shares closed S$0.21 or 0.6 per cent higher at S$36.63 on Wednesday.

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