F&N’s H1 profit nearly doubles to S$306m

Conglomerate Fraser & Neave (F&N) said its half year profit was up 93.7 percent or nearly doubled to S$306 million.

The earnings were lifted by a stronger second quarter where profit rose 89 per cent to S$170 million.

Revenue in the first half rose about 19 per cent to $2.8 billion, thanks to growth in all its key business segments.

They were lifted by strong demand for drinks products and strong rental income in properties.

Strong consumer demand helped its food & beverage division maintain its strong growth momentum.

The conglomerate saw higher revenues from its Indochina market, on a rebound in consumer demand.

New acquisitions in Indonesia and New Caledonia also helped.

F&N said it is also confident of growing its soft drinks business, despite its Coca Cola franchise ending in September next year.

It said other revenue streams will fill the gap.

“They will come from 3 sources. Some of the new franchises will (be acquired), we’ve already acquired one and we are looking at others. The other (source) will come from new products, that will fill up the gap very quickly. The third (one) will come from the existing portfolio growth,” said Tan Ang Meng, CEO of F&N.

F&N’s property business was boosted by strong rental income, progressive recognition of pre-sold projects and recovery in its core residential markets.

F&N said barring any unforeseen circumstances, its full year profits are expected to be higher than the previous year.

F&N has declared an interim dividend of 5 cents per share, up from 3 cents from the previous year.

Source : Channel NewsAsia – 14 May 2010

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