CMMT’s 1Q NPI falls on lower rental income amid MCO

KUALA LUMPUR (May 21): Capitaland Malaysia Mall Trust (CMMT) said its earnings in the first quarter ended March 31, 2020 was affected by lower rental income from its shopping malls, following the implementation of the movement control order (MCO). 

Net property income fell by a quarter to RM39.36 million, from RM52.75 million a year earlier, CMMT said in a bourse filing today.

The trust announced a distribution per unit of 0.98 sen, as against 1.71 sen in the corresponding quarter last year.

As a result, total distributable income to unitholders dropped 42.2% to RM20.1 million, from RM34.96 million. 

CMMT said quarterly gross rental income declined 15.3% to RM58.26 million, from RM68.78 million last year. 

Car park income, meanwhile, fell 16% to RM5.07 million from RM6.03 million. 

As such, gross revenue came in 15.2% lower at RM74.53 million, from RM87.91 million a year earlier. 

CMMT said the lower revenue was due to the granting of a 14-day rental waiver to tenants in non-essential services during the MCO period, which started on March 18.

Lower car park and marketing communications income, as well as lower recovery of utilities during the period, also affected revenue, it added. 

The decrease was mitigated by the revenue contribution of CMMT’s Jumpa Mall at Sungei Wang Plaza, following the completion of asset enhancement initiatives and soft opening on Sept 25, 2019. 

CMMT said its property operating expenses increased by 0.1% to RM35.2 million in the fisrt quarter due to higher maintenance and marketing expenses at Jumpa, on top of operations and adhoc repair expenses at its 3 Damansara mall – which was offset by lower utilities across all of its malls during the MCO period. 

On prospects, the trust noted it has business continuity plans in place to minimise the impact of Covid-19 and the MCO — with precautionary measures escalated in accordance with official guidelines. 

“During the subsequent conditional MCO, tenants from the permitted trades gradually resumed operations. To support our tenants’ businesses and serve the needs of the communities, we have extended complimentary parking to full day until 26 May 2020. 

“For tenants unable to operate during these periods, we have committed up to RM35.0 million of rental relief support to provide immediate cost and cashflow relief. 

“In addition, we will pass through the 15% discount on monthly electricity bills to eligible tenants, announced by the Malaysian government as part of the economic stimulus package, from April to September 2020,” it said. 

CMMT’s price rose by half a sen or 0.62% to 81 sen a unit today, giving the trust a market capitalisation of RM1.67 billion.

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