Profit jumps 146% at SOS in Q2

Stationery & Office Supplies Montego Bay office.

Profit jumped 146 percent at the recent Junior Market listing, Stationery & Office Supplies, to $20.3 million in the June quarter this year, before corporation tax of $8.8 million. For the six months period to June, profit before tax rose 33.4 percent to $50.4 million.
Revenues climbed 23.7 percent in the latest quarter to $212 million and 22 percent to $432 million for the six months. Gross profit climbed 25.5 percent to $99.5 million for the June quarter, flowing from increased gross profit margin while year to date, the increase was lower at 20.5 percent to $208 million. Expenses closed the June quarter at $79.2 million versus $71 million, an increase of 11.6 percent. For the year to date, the increase is a high 17 percent but still lower than the increase in revenues.
The 2017 result to date, is almost equal to the total 2016 results before tax of $53 million. Gross cash flow resulted in cash of $23 million being generated after an increase in working capital $28 million. The company spent $32 million on acquisition of fixed assets which required borrowing $4 and utilizing some cash on hand.
Businesses need adequate capital to grow and when debt reaches a certain level it becomes more challenging to access borrowed funding. Sometimes owners become concerned with increasing debt and this may hold back the performance of the business. Growth in the SOS’ business was putting pressure on cash resources resulting in borrowings rising, with $141 million outstanding at the end of June amounting to 50 percent of the equity. The need to expand to meet an increasing demand for its products would have placed added pressure on the owners to find the funds to finance the expansion.
The capital that came from the Issue of shares to the public will go a far way in improving the company’s finances and allow it to fund expansion, including paying for additional fixed assets which it was committed to at the time of the IPO.

Some team members at SOS who helped in the growth in prfoits for 2017

The Stationery and Office Supplies executive body that helped to grow profit in 2017

IC’s observations are that listing on the stock exchange brings huge benefits to companies. The constant exposure results in increased business, the capital injection allows for increased focus on inventory selection and choices, all of which feed into increased sales. The increased pace of sales growth in the second quarter may well be connected with the publicity received prior to listing and it would be surprising if the pace of growth does not pick up in the second half of the year and well into 2018.
At a last traded price of $4.20 on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange, the stock remains a buy to benefit from future growth. IC projects earnings before tax at 50 cents per share based on the average number of shares issued for the year, up from 40 cents when the shares were offered for sale and $1 for 2018 which is projected to continue to show strong growth in revenues. IC gathers that sales have picked up strongly after the IPO with many more walk in customers being seen than before. later in 2017, online marketing website and increased sales to the Eastern Caribbean will commence which should add to growth in sales going forward.
The company, under the stock exchange rules need not have put out the six months report, having been listed in August. The release is to be applauded. It is in the investing public’s interest, to have pertinent information on which they can make their investment decisions.

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