Nestle, Milux, Public Bank, Brahim’s, TAS Offshore, Supermax and MNC Wireless

Nestle, Milux, Public Bank, Brahim’s, TAS Offshore, Supermax and MNC Wireless
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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 22): Based on corporate announcements and news flow today, companies that might be in focus tomorrow (Friday, Oct 23) include the following: Nestle (Malaysia), Milux, Public Bank, Brahim’s, TAS Offshore, Supermax and MNC Wireless.
Nestle (Malaysia) Bhd's net profit rose 19.4% to RM179.16 million or 76.4 sen a share for the third quarter ended Sept 30, 2015 (3QFY15), from RM150.08 million or 64 sen a share a year ago, on improved cost of sales and lower tax expenses.

Revenue for 3QFY15 also increased 5.3% to RM1.22 billion, from RM1.16 billion in 3QFY14, driven by growth in domestic sales, led by new product launches and the successful ‘Lagi Sihat, Lagi Happy’ consumer campaign, as well as improvements in its export business.

The group declared a second interim dividend of 65 sen per share, amounting to RM152.43 million for the financial year ending Dec 31, 2015 (FY15), payable on Dec 2.

For the nine-month period (9MFY15), Nestle Malaysia’s net profit rose 8.6% to RM490.94 million or 209.36 sen a share, from RM452.08 million or 192.78 sen a share in 9MFY14. However, it saw a marginal 1.6% decline in revenue to RM3.64 billion in 9MFY15, from RM3.7 billion in 9MFY14.

Milux Corp Bhd, which announced its property diversification last week, said today that its maiden property development in Pahang has been revised to five condominium blocks with retail and club facilities, instead of the six blocks that were originally planned.

The home appliance maker said the estimated gross development value (GDV) of the project is RM2.13 billion, while its gross development cost (GDC) is estimated at RM1.05 billion.

Last week, Milux announced it is partnering RGF Cabaran Sdn Bhd (RCSB) to jointly develop 12 pieces of land, measuring 25,832.31 sq m in Bentong, Pahang, into a residential property, consisting of condominiums.

On Monday (Oct 18), it told the exchange that the development would consist of six condominium blocks, with construction expected to begin in June 2017 and complete in December 2020.

Public Bank Bhd reported a 0.8% rise in its third quarter net profit at RM1.2 billion, from a year earlier, on higher net interest, besides fee and commission income. Foreign exchange gains also supported bottom line growth.

Public Bank said its net profit in the third quarter ended Sept 30, 2015 (3QFY15) of RM1.2 billion, was in comparison to RM1.19 billion previously.

“The improved earnings was mainly due to higher net interest income, higher foreign exchange income and higher net fee and commission income, partially offset by higher other operating expenses and higher loan impairment allowances,” Public Bank said.

For the cumulative nine months (9MFY15), net profit rose to RM3.57 billion, from RM3.26 billion a year earlier. Revenue was higher at RM14.25 billion, versus RM12.33 billion.

As at Sept 30, Public Bank said gross loans rose 12.9% to RM268 billion, from RM237.5 billion a year earlier. Customers’ deposits climbed 10.4% to RM296.3 billion.

Brahim’s Holdings Bhd received an offer from Singapore-based SATS Ltd to buy a 49% stake in Brahim's Airline Catering Holdings Sdn Bhd (BACH) for RM218 million.

Brahim’s said the conditional binding offer involved the acquisition of 490,000 shares in BACH.

“The board will appoint the relevant advisers in due course and deliberate on the terms of the said offer, and decide on the next course of action.

“Further announcements will be made, once the board has made a decision on the conditional binding offer,” Brahim's said.

SATS plans to pay the RM218 million to Brahim's in two portions. Brahim's said the first RM110 million portion would be paid upon completion of the transaction.

The remaining RM108 million is conditional upon certain financial targets being met, according to Brahim's.
TAS Offshore Bhd saw its net profit soar 60% to RM8.73 million for the first quarter ended Aug 31, 2015, from RM5.45 million in the previous year, due to foreign exchange gains.

However, the company's 1Q revenue dropped 1% to RM75.5 million, from RM76.3 million a year ago, according to its filing on Bursa Malaysia today.

The increase in profit was due to gain on foreign exchange recorded during the current quarter, as the US dollar and Singapore dollar strengthened, the company said.

The company expects demand for both platform support vessels and anchor handling tug supply vessels to remain weak in the short term, but it remains cautiously optimistic in the long term, that oil price will recover.

Fidelity Investments (FMR LLC), one of the largest mutual fund and financial services groups in the world, has emerged as a substantial shareholder in glovemaker Supermax Corp Bhd, with a 5.13% stake.

FMR LLC has accumulated a total of 34.41 million Supermax shares, representing a 5.13% stake. The shares were acquired between Oct 9 to Oct 15, 2015. The acquisition price paid per share, was not revealed.

This would make FMR the third largest shareholder in Supermax, after its executive chairman and group managing director Datuk Seri Stanley Thai Kim Sim who holds a 20.71% stake, and his wife and Supermax executive director Datin Seri Cheryl Tan Bee Geok who has a 15.33% stake.

MNC Wireless Bhd is eyeing Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas)'s digital advertising projects via a planned collaboration with the national oil company's licensed advertising firm.

In a statement to Bursa Malaysia today, mobile-technology specialist MNC said it signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Petrowangsa Sdn Bhd, with the intention to provide the latter, with multimedia advertising and digital-technology solutions.

It stressed, however, that the MoU is not expected to immediately have material effects on the earnings per share, net assets per share, gearing, share capital and substantial shareholders' shareholding of MNC, for the financial year ending Dec 31, 2015.

It also does not constitute any legal binding obligation between the parties, until definitive and binding agreements are executed between MNC and Petrowangsa, said MNC.

According to MNC, Petrowangsa is a Petronas' licence holder for various service categories, which include media advertising.

At the MoU signing ceremony here, MNC's chief executive officer, Christopher Tan Chor How, told reporters that the services involved mobile application and platform development, besides website development.

Tan said MNC would also offer its expertise in account management, e-commerce, bulk messaging, social media and digital advertising.

(Note: The Edge Research's fundamental score reflects a company’s profitability and balance sheet strength, calculated based on historical numbers. The valuation score determines if a stock is attractively valued or not, also based on historical numbers. A score of 3 suggests strong fundamentals and attractive valuations.)