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New Silkroutes back in the black for Q3 with US$80,000 profit

MAINBOARD-listed New Silkroutes Group announced US$80,000 in profit for the three months ended March 31, 2018, swinging back into the black from a loss of US$294,000 in the previous year.

The investment holding company also clocked a 31 per cent rise in revenue to US$164.4 million.

Loss per share narrowed to 0.252 US cent for the nine months ended March 31, from a loss of 0.59 US cent in the same period last year.

An increase of US$37.5 million in oil trades and a contribution of US$1.5 million from newly acquired healthcare subsidiaries helped boost its bottom line, New Silkroutes added.

New Silkroutes entered the healthcare business after acquiring Singapore-based Healthsciences International in December 2016. The group further acquired six dental clinics and two dental supplies companies in July 2017, and three dental clinics in November 2017.

As a result of the acquisitions, personnel expenses for the third quarter increased to US$1.61 million, compared to US$0.82 million for Q3 FY17.

New Silkroutes announced that its plan to acquire manufacturing facilities for healthcare consumables in Shanghai, China is "ongoing", with the due diligence "near completion".

The group added in line with its focus on healthcare and energy, it did not proceed with the acquisition of privately owned investment manager Culross Global Holdings Limited, which had lapsed on the long stop date of April 19, 2018.

Goh Jin Hian, New Silkroutes’ chief executive, noted that the group's transformation strategy to focus on core competencies in healthcare and energy is "bearing fruit".

"We expect our healthcare division to contribute even more significantly to our profitability as we grow through a mix of strategic acquisitions and organic expansion, both locally and regionally. We also expect to secure our first hospital management contract shortly," he said.

To that end, Dr Goh announced the group had hired Luna Lee as chief executive of Healthsciences International.

"I have previously worked with her and I am confident that her rich experience in private hospital development and management, as well as her operational experience in the public primary care sector, will be valuable to strategise and execute the healthcare business," Dr Goh added.

As at 10.42am, New Silkroutes was trading up 5.09 per cent, or S$0.015, at S$0.31.

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