PETALING JAYA: Guan Chong Bhd’s net profit for the fourth quarter ended Dec 31, 2018 jumped 92.65% to RM63.02 million from RM32.71 million a year ago due to improved margin.
Revenue for the quarter rose 32.53% to RM651.29 million from RM491.44 million a year ago mainly driven by the increase in sales volume of cocoa products.
For the financial year ended Dec 31, 2018 (FY18), Guan Chong’s net profit more than doubled to RM189.25 million from RM91.05 million a year ago while revenue rose 5.28% to RM2.26 billion from RM2.15 billion a year ago.
The board declared a special dividend of 2 sen per share in respect of FY18, to be paid on March 29, 2019.
For the current financial year ending Dec 31, 2019, the group expects the business environment to be less volatile and anticipates overall performance to remain positive, based on the projected strong growth of global demand for chocolate.
The group said it will continue to focus on efforts to explore new markets for its wide range of cocoa ingredients, optimise production according to market conditions and expand overall grinding capacity.
Meanwhile, the group has proposed to undertake a private placement of up to 10% of its share capital to independent third party investors, which would raise about RM146.21 million based on the illustrative issue price of RM3.06.
The proceeds raised would be used for working capital and/or future business projects/investments. Its gearing ratio is expected to be reduced to 1.28 times from 1.68 times.
The proposed private placement is subject to approval from Bursa Securities and is expected to be completed by the second quarter of 2019.
Guan Chong’s share price rose 1.45% to close at RM3.50 with 651,700 shares traded.