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Wee Hur Q1 earnings halved on drop in property development income

MAINBOARD-LISTED property group Wee Hur Holdings' earnings were halved in the first quarter, as turnover from the muted development segment fell.

Net profit dropped to S$5.72 million for the three months to March 31, down 48 per cent on the S$11.1 million posted in the previous year.

Group revenue plunged by 70 per cent to S$48.6 million on a drop in property development contributions, according to unaudited statements put out on Friday.

Earnings per share was 0.62 Singapore cent, down from 1.2 cents before.

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Wee Hur reported that its joint-venture Parc Botannia project, slated for completion by 2020, has sold about 81 per cent of all apartments, while the Mega@Woodlands industrial development, which is touting a rent-to-own scheme for potential buyers, has moved 63 per cent of units.

The construction order book stood at S$189.82 million through FY2020 as at end-March, the group also disclosed in its outlook statement.

Wee Hur added that its Australian student housing business - which started operations in July 2018 - will hit 2,350 occupied beds by the second quarter.

Meanwhile, the group has a pipeline of 4,540 beds across five sites altogether and is "in the final stage of securing the final land parcel" to bring its portfolio to 5,000 beds, it said.

With the competition for workers' dormitories described as "still keen", Wee Hur also reported a 76 per cent occupancy rate for its facility in Tuas View.

No dividend was recommended, unchanged from the same period the year before.

Wee Hur closed flat at S$0.225 on Friday before the results were released.