Paramount’s lubricant plant in operation

New Lubricant plant at Walton Park Road

Profit at Paramount Trading, jumped 137 percent to $34 in the first quarter to August last year, but declined by 35 percent in the November quarter, to $24 million from $37 million in 2016.
For the six months to November, profit rose only 13 percent to $58 million from $51 million in 2016. Sale revenues rose 28 percent for the November quarter, to $257 million from $200 million in 2016 and increased 31 percent for the year to date, to $487 million from $370 million in 2016.
The board of directors in their report to shareholders accompanying the quarterly, stated that “our lubricant business line produced strong sales during the quarter when compared to the last year growing $28 million or 261 percent and by $41.6 million with a 248 percent increase year to date. Technical grade product sales grew by $47 million or 137 on quarterly basis and $83 million or 133 percent year over the period year. We expect this trend to continue into the last two quarters.”

Processing and storage tanks inside factory.

Profit margin declined in the November quarter to 28 percent from 30 percent in the 2016, and slipped to 29 percent from 31 percent for the year to date period. The effect, gross profit rose 15 percent in the quarter to $99 million from $86 million and 19 percent for the year to date, to $200 million from $169 million in 2016.
While revenues rose solidly, so did administrative expenses that jumped 47 percent to $72 million in the quarter and increased 13 percent in the six months period to $121 million. Finance cost declined in the quarter, to a negative $2 million from $4 million in 2016 and from $7 million to $1.5 million for the half year.
Earnings per share came out at 1.5 cents for the quarter and 3.7 cents for the six months and should end the fiscal year ending to March around 25 cents with four months production and sales from the lubricant plant and the expanded chlorine and bleach operations.
Gross cash flow, brought in $72 million but growth in receivables, inventories, addition to fixed assets offset by loan inflows and reduced Payables wiped out the gains.

Another view inside of the factory.

Shareholders’ equity stands at $739 million with borrowings at just $77 million. Net current assets ended the period at $486 million, well over payables of $237 million. Inventories rose to $394 million from $320 million at the end of November 2016 and receivables climbed to $321 million from $238 million with cash and investments ending at $78 million.
The company commenced operation of the joint venture lubricant plant from around a month ago as well as production of bleach, an addition of a new product line. When the lubricant plant was announced in 2015, the estimate for revenues was in the US$5 million range but now that Alpart is reopened, the amount should rise.
The stock traded at $3.10 on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange with a PE ratio of 5.6 times IC, 2019 earnings of around 55 cents per share.

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