ComfortDelGro’s first-half profit rises 30% to $119 million on exceptional gain

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SINGAPORE — Transportation giant ComfortDelGro posted a 30.4% rise in profit to $118.7 million for the six months ended June 30, boosted by a one-time windfall gain.

Revenue rose 6.7% to $1.86 billion as global economies emerged from the Covid-19 pandemic. Operating expenses rose 4.8% to $1.68 billion.

The Singapore-based global group said that with the exception of China, economic activity in all the countries where it operates has picked up over the past six months. The Alperton garage sale in Britain and government assistance helped boost profits.

Earnings per share were 5.48 cents, compared to 4.2 cents in the same period last year. Net assets per share amounted to 125.26 cents, compared to 124.9 cents previously.

The directors recommend an interim dividend of 2.85 cents and a special dividend of 1.41 cents.

ComfortDelGro Chairman Lim Jit Poh said: “The group is in a unique position to have a strong cash flow and net cash position. fund our dividend payments internally.

“With the exceptional gain from the sale of the Alperton property in London, we have decided to pass on the net gain from this sale to our shareholders. This is something we will continue to do in the future when we realize extraordinary gains. and don’t need the product urgently.”

The group’s public transport services division fared much better, with operating profit up 48.8% to $122.8 million. Operating profit from its taxi business rose 18.4% to $21.2 million.

Its automotive engineering division, which includes fuel sales to taxi drivers, posted a 16.1% drop in operating profit to $4.7 million. Its vehicle inspection business saw an 8.6% rise in profit to $16.5 million, while its driving center business saw a 10.9% drop in profit to $9 million. of dollars.

The group’s car rental division posted a profit of $1.7 million, unchanged from previously. But its bus station business suffered a loss of $300,000, on a profit of $1.6 million.

As of June 30, cash and cash equivalents were $970.5 million, compared to $892.8 million previously. The group said no impairment provision was made for taxi vehicles, taxi licenses, goodwill and investments in subsidiaries for the period.

In its outlook, ComfortDelGro said there was “uncertainty about the effectiveness” of public transport fare formulas “over the long term if high energy prices were to persist”.

In Singapore, it said its public transport business would be affected by an amendment to a reduction in service charges payable by the Land Transport Authority on five bus contracts from September 1, 2022 as part of a deal to move the Downtown MRT line to a new funding framework.

Rail ridership in Singapore, bus charter in Australia and coach services in Britain continue to recover, but taxi revenues in China will continue to be heavily impacted by the zero Covid-19 policy of the country, he said.

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