KUALA LUMPUR (May 25): KLCCP Stapled Group reported a net profit of RM161.44 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 2022 (1QFY22), up 10.48% from RM146.12 million in the same quarter last year, amid a rebound in business activities.

The group, comprising KLCC Property Holdings Bhd (KLCCP) and KLCC Real Estate Investment Trust (KLCC REIT), saw revenue grow 13.93% to RM321.71 million from RM282.37 million.

The group declared a dividend of eight sen per stapled security, 14.3% higher than the year-ago quarter's seven sen payout.

In a statement, KLCCP Stapled said it registered an improved year-on-year performance across all business segments, particularly retail and hotel, due to the relaxation of Covid-19 containment measures.

Its retail segment's profit before tax (PBT) rose 36% to RM79.6 million on the back of a 23% rise in revenue, primarily contributed by higher rent revenues, advertising income, and percentage rents in fashion, and food and beverages.

"As the country transitions to the endemic phase and the lifting of international border restrictions, Suria KLCC and Mandarin Oriental, Kuala Lumpur are set to benefit from the heightened economic activities, particularly the resumption of the meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions (MICE) activities.

"From now until December 2022, over 40 high-profile international events, conventions and exhibitions will be hosted at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, which is located within the KLCC Precinct, and the spillover effect from these MICE activities, along with tourists' arrivals, are expected to further boost the performance of our retail and hotel segments," said the group's chief executive officer Md Shah Mahmood.

Md Shah said KLCCP Stapled is optimistic about a strong recovery given the encouraging performances of these segments, and the group anticipates the positive trend will continue, as seen from increased tenant sales and the gradual pickup in the hotel's international bookings, mainly by guests from Singapore, Australia, the UK and the US.

The office segment — the largest contributor to the group's overall income — recorded a revenue of RM145.3 million, backed by long-term leases and triple net lease agreements. The marginal increase in PBT of 1.06% to RM118.8 million was contributed by lower financing cost from the refinancing of KLCC REIT's sukuk murabahah in April 2021.

"The management services segment, comprising the facilities management and the car parking management services, saw a 17% revenue increase to RM63.8 million, whilst PBT grew 7.2% to RM16.9 million. This was mainly attributed to higher car park revenue generated from higher car counts at the malls in line with the resumption of economic activities. The car parking management has also secured an additional 1,760 car parking bays in the Putrajaya precinct locations which will contribute to the earnings of the group," said Md Shah.

Going forward, Md Shah said the group will continue to remain focused on its recovery efforts and are all set to leverage on the full resumption of economic activities to spur growth to achieve its pre-pandemic performance.

Shares in the stapled securities dropped four sen to close at RM6.78 on Tuesday, giving the group a market capitalisation of RM12.24 billion.

Edited by Tan Choe Choe

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