|Wednesday, 20 August 2003|
Aitken Spence posts Rs. 250 million net profit in Q1
Aitken Spence & Co. Ltd. (SPENS), one of Sri Lanka's premier blue chips, posted a record net profit of Rs. 250 million for the First Quarter of its new financial year, which included an exceptional profit of Rs. 155.5 million from the disposal of its 25% holding of Union Assurance Ltd.
This is a 517% increase in attributable profit compared to the same period last year and a continuation of the Group's highly charged performance and profit growth from the last financial year.
SPENS recorded a turnover of Rs. 1.64 billion for this Quarter, which was a 28.4% increase from the same period last year. The Group's Operating Profits also grew by 245.6% to Rs. 356.6 million.
The Group's strategic investments in the Infrastructure Sector continued to be the main driver behind its performance with the thermal power plants at Matara and Horana contributing nearly 24% of the turnover.
The Sector recorded a 174% increase in its operating profits compared to the same period last year.
The revival of interest in Sri Lanka as a prime tourist destination due to the stability brought about by the ongoing peace process saw a 33% increase in turnover in the Tourism sector, which is the Group's main revenue generator.
The main thrust came from its inbound tour operations which recorded an increase in arrivals of 27% during the period outperforming the industry.
These results were achieved in spite of the adverse effects of the SARS epidemic and the fallout from the war in Iraq alone. The Group's hotels in Sri Lanka also fared better than last year registering increased occupancies in what was essentially an off-season period.
As part of its strategic investment process the Group participated in the privatisation of the Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation by purchasing a 5% stake in the insurance giant.
Commenting on the future, a company spokesperson said that they are fully committed to sustaining this performance and believe this is a precursor to another record breaking year, SPENS reported a basic EPS of Rs. 9.32 per share and is currently trading at Rs. 229.00.
Produced by Lake House