• The group attributed the lower revenue to fewer construction activities caused by slower lead time for the supply of building materials.
  • Ekovest's property development, toll operations and plantations segments saw better results.

KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 30): Ekovest Bhd's net loss for the fourth quarter ended June 30, 2022 (4QFY22) ballooned to RM123.81 million from RM2.66 million a year before, dragged by lower contribution from the construction and property investment segments.

This has resulted in its loss per share swelling to 4.59 sen in 4QFY22 from 0.1 sen a year ago, according to the group’s filing with Bursa Malaysia.

Revenue in 4QFY22 dropped 40.47% to RM224.49 million from RM377.11 million in the previous year.

Ekovest said the construction sector reported lower revenue of RM72.75 million in 4QFY22 compared with RM288.52 million in 4QFY21. Correspondingly, the segment posted a gross loss of RM5.64 million in 4QFY22 against a gross profit of RM118.21 million in 4QFY21

The group attributed the lower revenue to fewer construction activities caused by slower lead time for the supply of building materials. The delay was caused by the various Movement Control Orders (MCO) previously implemented by the government.

“Furthermore, provisions have been made in this current quarter to reflect the anticipated higher cost of building materials post-MCO, which has been affecting the entire construction industry,” it explained. 

Meanwhile, Ekovest said the segment’s rental revenue decreased to RM6.49 million in 4QFY22 from RM7.65 million a year ago, mainly due to tenants ending their tenancies with Ekocheras Shopping Mall. The segment’s gross profit also sank to RM1.04 million from RM3.45 million during the same period.

On the other hand, Ekovest's property development, toll operations and plantations segments saw better results.

Ekovest noted that the toll operations segment registered 78.56% higher revenue of RM85.65 million in 4QFY22 compared with RM47.97 million in 4QFY21.

The improvement was due to higher traffic volume after movement restrictions were eased, as well as toll compensation for 2019 amounting to RM36.27 million.

Thus, this segment's net profit rose to RM67.41 million from RM38.73 million in 4QFY21, it added.

Meanwhile, the plantation segment registered higher revenue of RM44.84 million and gross profit of RM10.12 million in 4QFY22, compared with RM26.86 million and RM7.43 million respectively a year ago.

The increase in revenue and gross profit for the segment were mainly attributed to higher oil palm sales and the significant increase in average selling price of fresh fruit bunches.

Meanwhile, sales from its durian plantation, contract farming and manufacturing and trading divisions also improved during the period.

Its food and beverages (F&B) division’s revenue increased to RM2.85 million in 4QFY22 from RM1.19 million a year ago, thanks to the relaxation of the MCO restrictions, which boosted consumer spending.

Nevertheless, the dismal quarterly result dragged the group’s full-year result (FY22) to a net loss of RM124.98 million, versus a net profit of RM43.39 million a year before. Revenue was 40.3% lower at RM808.6 million in FY22 compared with RM1.35 billion in FY21.

The board remains optimistic in delivering positive financial results as it expects the Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link with a contract sum of RM1.98 billion for the RTS Link rail works, to contribute positively to the group’s future revenue and earnings.

The board is also confident that each of the group’s segments would contribute positively to the group’s performance in FY23.

Shares in Ekovest settled at 38.5 sen on Tuesday (Aug 30), up half a sen or 1.32%. This values the group at RM1.04 billion.

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