Profit jumps 45% at Lasco Distributors

Lasco Distributors" hot new "I Cool" drink.

Lasco Distributors” hot new “I Cool” drink.

Profit at Lasco Distributors jumped 45 percent in the June quarter to $132 million from $91 million in 2014, from revenues that jumped a significant 38 percent to $3.3 billion from $2.4 billion. Profit however, was down on the March quarter’s $152 million from revenues of $2.5 billion.
“The main contributing factors to the increase revenues were the increase in volumes of iCool beverages and additional revenue from the distribution of the full range of Unilever Products”, Peter M. Chin, Managing Director reported to shareholders in the directors’ report accompanying the financial data.
“Increase logistics costs for the period and the continued aggressive selling and marketing activities resulting in the gross profit margin being lower by 1.4 percentage points than the prior year. The aggressive efforts to drive demand for our newly launched iCool brand of beverages has been successful as the company achieved a significant increase in volumes’, Chin went on to say.
P chin 2Cost of sales rose 41 percent to $1.75 billion faster than revenue growth but still allowed for the strong increase in profit. Gross profit margin came out at 16.9 percent down from 18.25 percent in 2014 and declined to 17.94 percent for the 12 months to March 2015 from 19.37 percent in 2014. Administrative, selling and other expenses rose 22 percent to $441 million during the June quarter, from $361 million in 2014.
“For the reporting period Current Assets increased by 24.5 percent or $951 million. The major contributory factor was Trade and Other Receivables category which increased by 48.1 percent or $776 million, this was a result of the increased Credit Sales and Principal activities. Inventories increased by 33.6 percent or $436.7 million due to new products to market and new business agreements, Trade and Other Payables increased by 34.4 percent or $615 million over the corresponding period,” Peter M. Chin, reported.
Earnings per share ended at 4 cents, and IC Insider is forecasting 35 cents per share for the full year which would be well ahead of the 16 cents earned for the 2015 fiscal year.
While the stock is trading at $1.90 or 5.5 times current year’s earnings, making the stock attractive especially as profits are likely enjoy a big uptick in 2017 as well with more products to distribute. Investors need to bear in mind that profits become taxable at 12.5 percent starting in the second half of this fiscal year, for five years.

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  2. […] Lasco Distributors reported an 87 percent increase in profit after tax for the six months to September, of $379 million over 2014 and a 121 percent increase in the September quarter of $247 million over the similar quarter last year. The Gross profit for the period was S1.1 billion, an increase of $299 million or 36 percent over the prior year. The Gross Profit margin for the quarter was $628 million, or 32 percent over the same period last year. Gross profit margin for the august 2015 quarter is 17.26 percent versus 17.5 percent in 2014 and year to date 16.2 percent in 2015 and 16.28 percent in 2014. The huge gain came from increased revenues of 34 percent for the quarter, amounting to $6.95 billion and 36 percent for the six months of $3.64 billion. “This growth was driven mainly by contributions from our iCool and Unilever lines of business, both of which have been doing very well”, Peter Chin, Managing Director reported to shareholders in the directors’ report accompanying the financial data. An interesting element of the results is the 10 percent growth in revenue over the June quarter a continuation of the quarter over quarter growth evident from late in 2014 with an average of 8 percent for the last three quarters. Earnings per stock for the six months amount to 11 cents and 7 cents for the quarter. IC Insider projects profit of 34 cents for the current year and 50 cents for the year to March 2017. Cost were held well below the growth in revenues with Operating Expenses in the latest quarter rising to $396 million from $377 in 2014 and for the six months this year the company incurred $779 million versus $658 million in 2014 for a rise of 18 percent. Cash flow from operations increased by 94 percent to $391 million from $202 million for the similar period to September 2014 swelling Cash and Equivalents at the end of the Period to $904,043 compared with $191,277. The company’s shares are listed on the junior market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange. Its principal activity is the distribution of pharmaceutical and consumable items, ii distributes all of Lasco Manufacturing’s products locally. The stock may be considered fully priced currently with a PE of 10 being one of the higher priced junior market stocks, but with strong growth expected and lower interest rates to come, investors with a long term time horizon may want to accumulate from now, bearing in mind the limited supply available. […]

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