Knutsford’s sales up 38% cost 44%

  Knutsford Express’ audited report for 2015 shows a big 38 percent surge in profit to $69 million over the $50 million in 2014, from revenues of $454 million, 38 percent more than the $329 million generated in 2014. With that level of revenue increase profit should have grown much faster than it did, and should have been closer to doubling.
New routes added could have been a factor as passenger traffic takes time to build up, more importantly, increased cost in a number of areas seems more the culprit. Expenses for 2015 are up 41 percent but excluding $4.58 million of IPO cost included in 2014, the increase would have been 43.5 percent. The overall increase comes against the fact that fuel rose only 12 percent to $70 million and accounted for 19 percent of cost, down from 24 percent in 2014. Excluding fuel, all other costs are up 50 percent over 2014 and 54 percent, excluding the IPO cost, well over the revenue increase of 38 percent.
Staff and labour cost jumped 72 percent to $126 million and now accounts for 34 percent of cost up from 28 percent.
Telephone cost rose 68 percent to $7.9 million. Rent grew 61 percent to $7.8 million, travelling was up 160 percent to $6 million, advertising and promotion grew only 30 percent to $12.4 million and is one of the items that grew more slowly than revenues.

Knutsford's New Kingston depot

Knutsford’s New Kingston depot

Professional fees moved up 90 percent to $7.7 million. Passenger supplies were up 29 percent to $7 million which is well lower than the revenue growth. Parts and supplies grew 60 percent to $38 million. Surprisingly, insurance was only up by 12 percent to $14 million. Cleaning and sanitation increased 200 percent to $4.4 million. Toll fees jumped 163 percent to $7.4 million and would be due to the opening of the new leg of the highway to Ocho Rios while the South Coast routes that were added would add to the original cost. Depreciation and amortization grew to $25 million a 32 percent increase and security climbed 59 percent to $7.9 million.
Some items of cost such as repairs and maintenance actually fell while others such as electricity and office supplies rose more moderately than those above.

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  1. […] Knutsford Express more than doubled its profit for the first quarter to August, with a jump of 109 percent to $35.7 million, from $17 million in 2014 and revenues that climbed 38.5 percent to $143 million. The increased revenue “was due to growth in passenger travel” the company stated in its report to shareholders. Administrative and general operating expenses grew by a much slower 23 percent to $104 million than revenue. Depreciation climbed from $5.4 million to $7.55 million and finance amounts to $3.9 million and is up from $2.3 million in 2014. Unfortunately the company has not provided information on the composition of administrative and general operating expenses. Based on the last audited financials, the largest cost items are fuel, accounting for around 19 percent of cost, labour for 34 percent and repairs around 10 percent for a total of 43 percent or thereabout. Earnings per share is 36 cents for the 2015 quarter, putting full year earnings in the $1.60 region. The company provides a popular coach bus service that plies between Kingston and the North and South coasts of Jamaica. Service was extended to Port Antonio from Ocho Rios earlier in 2015 but will take time to build as more persons become familiar with it. Going forward it is unsure what the opening of the highway to Ocho Rios from Kingston will mean for growth. What is sure it will take less time to cover the route with less operating cost per trip and will allow them to better compete with air travel as the time factor to and from Montego Bay and Kingston will be reduced. The stock is listed on the junior market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange and has been trading around $6.10, for some time. These results should give the price a lift as the value is very low compared to others on the market, but management needs to improve on the inadequate manner of reporting the results, if not investors will be skeptical about the financial performance and shy away from the stock. At the end of the quarter, shareholders equity stands at $250 million and liabilities of just $91 million and current assets of $157 million which includes cash and investments of $79 million and other assets of $61 million that rose from $21 million in May this year. […]