Banyan Tree rakes in 142% jump in FY net profit to S$102m

Luxury resorts and spa operator Banyan Tree is reaping more rewards from its overseas expansion.

Banyan Tree Bintan (file picture)

Its net profit for the full year jumped 142 percent to $102 million.

This was achieved on the back of a 26 percent rise in revenue to $422 million.

The bottomline was driven by Banyan Tree’s hotel operations and property sales segments, coupled with a one-off negative goodwill exceptional gain arising from its unit’s rights issue in July last year.

Commenting on the results, Banyan Tree’s executive chairman Ho Kwon Ping said most of the company’s businesses performed better in 2007, adding that he is hopeful the positive trend will continue into 2008.

Mr Ho said that Banyan Tree is also seeing a strong pipeline of new hotel projects and encouraging responses to property and hotel residences sales.

Banyan Tree said that so far, there has been no perceptible, negative impact of the US sub-prime crisis and liquidity crunch on its hotel or property operations.

The US market accounts for only less than 2% of its business.

The company said it remains cautiously optimistic about its performance for 2008 unless the US sub-prime crisis and liquidity crunch adversely affect the global economy.

And the company is looking to grow its business through funds they will set up in different parts of the world.

Mr Ho said: “We’re very gratified that against today’s very negative financial climate, we have today signed and closed the first US$100 million portion of the Banyan Tree IndoChina Fund. We expect to close the balance which will be another US$300 million before the end of this year and that will then establish our first fund which is the Banyan Tree IndoChina Fund at US$400 million. We will then move to a Banyan Tree China Fund which will be even larger and we’ll be simultaneously doing other funds in other parts of the world.”

Banyan Tree has recommended a final tax exempt dividend of 2 cents per share for 2007.

A total dividend of S$15.2 million will be paid out when approved.

The resort operator has been aggressively expanding into new destinations around the world such as Mexico, Mauritius, Turkey, Vietnam and Jordan. – CNA/ir/ch

Source : Channel NewsAsia – 28 Feb 2008

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