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New properties, higher occupancy boost Centurion's Q2 earnings

WORKER dormitory and student accommodation company Centurion Corporation on Tuesday posted a 4 per cent increase in net profit to S$10.2 million for its second quarter ended June 30, on the back of an 8 per cent increase in revenue to S$32.9 million.

The higher revenue was mainly due to contribution from the group's newly added properties such as dwell East End Adelaide in Australia and dwell Princess Street in the United Kingdom. Higher occupancy rates achieved at its Singapore workers' accommodation also contributed to the better revenue performance.

On the other hand, the group's properties in South Korea and Westlite Bukit Minyak, Penang, which started operations in late-February 2019 and May 2019 respectively, incurred start-up losses that affected the bottom line. Centurion said these two properties are in the midst of ramping up their occupancy.

The group also updated that in Q2, it secured a nine-year lease on an adjacent block to Westlite Pasir Gudang in Johor, Malaysia, adding about 400 beds. It also commenced development of three dormitory blocks on a vacant parcel of land at Tampoi. Named Tampoi II, this project is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2020 and will add about 3,600 beds to the group's portfolio.

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In Singapore, Centurion also secured a 10-year lease, with an option to renew for another five years, for Westlite Juniper (formerly known as Juniper Lodge). The lease will commence in September 2019 and add about 1,900 beds.

In April 2019, Centurion announced a proposed reconstruction of an existing block in Westlite Toh Guan, which will add an industrial training centre to enhance the property's service offer and occupancy stability.

The board has declared an interim dividend of one Singapore cent per share for shareholders in Singapore, which will be paid on Sept 12.