KUALA LUMPUR (May 24): Paramount Corp Bhd achieved sales of RM227 million in the first quarter ended March 31, 2018 (1QFY18), but reported a slight drop in first-quarter net profit to RM6.96 million from RM6.98 million a year ago, on lower progressive billings recorded from the property division.

The property developer is targeting to achieve property sales of RM1 billion for the current financial year ending Dec 31, 2018 (FY18), backed by new launches worth RM1.2 billion.

Paramount’s unbilled sales stood at RM736 million as at March 31, 2018, which is expected to contribute positively to the group’s financial performance in the near future.

Paramount recorded lower earnings per share of 1.64 sen for 1QFY18 compared with 1.65 sen for 1QFY17.

Quarterly revenue, however, was up 12.6% to RM162.25 million from RM144.1 million in 1QFY17, on higher contribution from the education division due to the consolidation of R.E.A.L. Education Group of RM27 million from April last year, coupled with higher student enrolment at KDU University College in Glenmarie and Penang.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia yesterday, Paramount said in line with the group’s asset-light strategy, it will continue pursuing the sale and leaseback of assets and build strategic partnerships to undertake development projects on a joint venture basis if such opportunities arise.

“Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the group is expected to deliver a better operating performance for FY18,” it added.

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on May 24, 2018.

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