Revenues at The Lab to hit the billion mark

Revenues at Limners and Bards are set to hit the billion mark this year, with the nine months to July hitting $942 million, up 37 percent from $686 million in 2020 and the full year to October 2020 coming in at $912 million.
The topline performance led to profit rising 32 percent from $108 million to $142 million, with earnings per share of 15 cents. Quarterly profits climbed 35 percent from $21 million to $29 million from a 50 percent rise in revenues from $215 million to $323 million.
The revenue growth was driven by media placement (up $142.4 million or 39.4 percent) and production (up $115.9 million or 62.2 percent). There was a reduction in agency (down $2.4 million or 1.8 percent) during the period, Steven Gooden, Chairman and Kimala Bennett, Chief Executive Officer, stated in the Key Performance Highlights report.
The company enjoyed a big jump in finance income in the quarter and year to date periods with an income of $5.5 million for the quarter, up from $1.4 million in 2020 and $20.5 million for the nine months from $3.6 million last year.
Gross profit rose 25 percent to $285 million for the nine months to July, from $227 million and $82 million up 35 percent from $61 million. Gross profit mrgin slipped to 30 percent for the nine months to July, up from 33 percent in 2020 and for the latest quarter 25 percent from 28 percent in 2020.
Administration expenses increased $38.6 million, or 32.4 percent in comparison to the previous nine months period. These increases are primarily attributable to staff costs (increased work volume), repairs and maintenance of production equipment, depreciation and amortization charges and lease interest. Even with this increase, administrative expenses as a percentage of revenue remains relatively flat at 16.7 percent compared to 17.3 percent in the previous period.
Administrative expenses rose a robust 44 percent to $57 million in the quarter and increased 32.4 percent in the nine months to $157 million but the year to date amount remains steady at 15.3 percent of sales revenue and, while the third quarter represents 17.7 percent of sales down from 18.5 percent in 2020, well below the growth in revenues. . Sales and distribution expenses increased from zero percent to $8,000 in the quarter and were flat at $537,000 for the nine months. Finance cost rose in the quarter to $32,000 from $21,500 in 2020 and from $4 million to $5.6 million for the nine months.
Gross cash flow brought in $155 million, the paying $70 million dividends the operations added $68 million to $380 on hands the beginning of the year to end at $449 million at the end of July. Shareholders’ equity stood at $536 million, with long term borrowings at $106 million and short term at $3 million. Current assets ended the period at $657 billion, including trade and other receivables of $184 million, cash and bank balances of $449 million. Current liabilities ended the period at $185 million. Net current assets ended the period at $472 million.
The stock traded at $3.50 on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange on Friday.  IC Insider.com forecast is for earnings per share of 20 cents for the current year to October and 33 cents per share for the fiscal year ending 2022 with a PE of 17.5 times current year’s earnings, but 10.6 based on 2020 earnings. The average for the market based on the current year’s earnings is 12.7.
The company paid two dividends of 7.4 cents in January and 3.6 cents in August this year, amounting to $94 million. Net asset value is $0.57, with the stock selling at 6 times book value.

86% surge in Scotia Group Q3 profit

An 86 percent surge in profit after taxation at Scotia Group pushed the July 2021 quarter profit to $2.8 billion over $1.55 billion reported in 2020, a period heavily impacted by a massive provision for credit losses amounting to $2.57 billion. Profit after tax for the nine months to July climbed 31 percent to $7.29 billion compared to $5.56 billion last year, helped by the drop in credit loss provisioning in the current year.

Scotia Group headquarters in Kingston.

Net interest income fell 8.4 percent for the third quarter to $5.7 billion from $6.2 billion in 2020 and slipped 9 percent to $17 billion for the nine months to July from $18.7 billion in 2020. Expected credit losses for the latest quarter of $584 million was a fraction of the 2020 provision. For the nine months expected credit losses dropped sharply to $1.99 billion from $5.25 billion in 2020. Falling interest rates on investments, reduction in lending and growth in funds deposited by the public would have negatively impacted the results. The recent increase in interest rates by the Bank of Jamaica could benefit the group with investments and loans that could generate higher income and widen the net interest income margin.
Net fees and commission income rose to $1.95 billion from $1.65 in 2020 in the third quarter but fell slightly from $5.08 billion in 2020 to $4.99 billion in 2021 for the nine months. Gains on foreign currency activities slipped from $1.75 billion in July 2020 quarter to $1.65 billion and rose 17 percent to $6.2 billion from $5.3 billion for the nine months. Insurance revenues grew to 35 percent in the latest quarter to $696 million from $516 million and fell in the nine months to $2 billion from $2.4 billion. Other revenues brought in $1 billion for the nine months compared to just $39 million for the prior period and are attributable primarily to gains realized on the extinguishment of debt facilities.
Loans advanced to customers that stood at $222 billion at the end of July last year declined modestly to $216 billion at the end of July this year but is up slightly from $214.7 billion at the end of April this year. The report to shareholders stated that mortgage loans recorded growth of 11 percent year over year and is similar to increase up to the April quarter. Growth in loans is essential for the group is it is an area that contributes most to the rise in profits and creates stability in earnings.

Audrey Tugwell Henry Scotia group’s CEO

Operating expenses slipped marginally from $5.76 billion in 2020 to $5.69 billion for the July quarter as employment cost fell from $2.46 billion to $2.26 billion and property expenses slipped to $492 million from $573 million in 2020. For the nine months to July, Operating expenses rose to $19 billion from $18.75 billion in 2020, primarily due to an increase in other operating expenses of $1 billion and partially offset by the reduction in salaries and staff benefit costs of $602 million. The increase in other operating expenses was due to restructuring costs and technology expenses. The group reported that operating expenses would be $263 million or 1.4 percent lower than the prior comparative period, excluding restructuring and additional one-off costs.
Segment results show the problem local banks have with retail banking. That segment generates the most income for Scotia but contributes the least in profits. For the nine months to July, Retail Banking contributed $1.3 billion to profit on revenues of $14 billion and in 2020, the segment contributed a loss of $975 million from revenues of $14.5 billion. Treasury generated $1.3 billion in segment profits from $2.9 million in revenues to third parties against $1.46 billion from revenues of $3.1 billion in 2020. Corporate Banking resulted in a profit of $3.5 billion on revenues of $8.44 billion and profit of $3.23 billion on revenues of $8 billion in 2020. Investment Banking delivered a profit of $1.85 billion on revenues of $2.6 billion and profit of $1.3 billion on revenues of $2.29 billion in 2020 and Insurance produced profit of $2.12 billion on revenues of $3.1 billion and profit of $2.5 billion with revenues of $3.48 billion in 2020.
Customer deposits grew 10.7 percent to $371 billion to July, from $335 billion for the comparable quarter of 2020. Investment securities rose from $141 billion at the end of July 2020 to $146 billion after dipping to $116 billion at the end of the 2020 fiscal year and cash resources stood at $147 billion, up from $116 billion at the end of July 2020.
Shareholders’ equity ended at $116 billion at the end of July this year, up from $110 billion as of July 2020.
Earnings per share stood at 90 cents for the July quarter and $2.34 for the nine months this year and should end up around $3.50 for the entire year; for 2022, and earnings should exceed $4 per share.  At the close of trading on the Jamaica Stock Exchange Main Market to stock at $39 at the start of the final week of September.
While the stocks trade at 11 times the current year’s earnings, 2022 should see growth in profits, thus reducing the valuation most likely below ten times 2022 earnings.

Shocking 4 years of Cargo Handlers errors

The number of shares issued by publicly listed companies is very important information for investors to know, but investors would not think so when examining interim financial statements in Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago of some of the companies.
There have been so many occasions one has to search high and low to find it if at all it is reported in the interim numbers. This is such a simple matter and the stock exchanges in the region could cure it easily, by making it one of the items that must be included in quarterly reports. It should be included as a part of the statement of movement in Shareholders’ equity.
The latest shocking reporting is that of Cargo Handlers that shows the number of shares issued as a part of the statement of shareholders’ equity. The oddity is the company reporting only 37.466 million issued shares since 2018 when it increased to more than 374 million units. The Jamaica Stock Exchange website shows them as having 416.25 million shares issued and the audited accounts show that the change took place in 2018 the numbers moving from 37.485 to 374.653 million shares. One wonders why no one discovered this glaring error when the list of top 10 shareholders show four of them having more shares than what they list as issued. The error goes back to 2018 for all of the quarterly reports.
This is such a glaring error and neither the Stock Exchange, the Financial Services Commission the directors of the company or its accounting staff have found out.
Our reporting standards are not up to scratch and some persons in the financial system love to talk about best practices globally.
Take the matter of segment reporting. Some companies report it quarterly and some only annually. Most correctly report the current period and the comparative previous year’s period. Why can’t the JSE insist on some minimum standards for the benefit of investors so they get information consistently? Limners and Bards is the latest company to provide a quarterly report with no segment results yet they report it in the audited report albeit just one year forcing investors to have to go back to the previous year’s report for the comparison. Seems if that is the approach they should just report the current year’s figures and let investors go back to the previous year’s reports for profit and balance sheet information.
The vast majority of listed companies report profit results with direct and indirect costs and gross profit. But others do not. The group shockingly includes GraceKennedy, 138 Student Living, Knutsford Express. It is full time that companies lift the standard of reporting so that investors can get pertinent information to use in their investment decision making. In response to a question put to Don Wehby about the bulking of all cost on the profit statement suggest that they are in compliance with accounting standards, but that is such a lame and shocking excuse from a company of such standing in the country. Seprod produces it, Jamaica Broilers does it and several other listed companies so why not Grace. Are grace directors suggesting that their shareholders are lesser persons than those of other companies? The case of 138 Student Living is shocking when one considers that the Chairman, Ian Parsard is also Group Senior Vice President – Finance & Corporate Planning at Jamaica Broilers.
Communication with investors is a subjective matter but there are some simple matters that it just takes some thinking or consulting to get right.
AMG Packaging is in a class by itself when it comes to poor communication. The company has embarked on a major capital project, but the directors appear to be of the view that minority shareholders are best kept in as much darkness as possible about it. The audited accounts for 2020 are silent on any commitment to the project.
The latest quarterly the only capital spend, is shown as work in progress on the balance sheet in the amount of $57 million, with no comments on the progress, the total commitment and when it is expected to be complete and be in use. Worse there are no comments on its use. It is noted that the purpose has moved from a warehouse to a factory between 2018 and now.
In the 2018 annual report, the Chairman stated that “the Company recently took an option to purchase an adjoining property. If the transaction is completed, the additional space will be used to alleviate some of the space constraints in the existing facility, making operations more efficient.”
In the 2019 annual report “The Company completed the acquisition on the property at 12 Retirement Crescent which will allow us to expand our operations and to better serve our customers.” The company also stated that they “obtained funding from Proven Wealth Limited to assist with the development of 12 Retirement Crescent. The KSAC is in the process of reviewing the architectural drawings for 12 Retirement.”
The 2020 annual report states, “the company plans on utilizing the strong cash and cash equivalents position into developing 12 Retirement Crescent.  The pandemic had caused the development of 12 Retirement Crescent to delay from 2020 to 2021. A contractor has been chosen and the building of an additional 11,370 square feet is set to begin in February 2021.”
In the results to February this year, the only comment made about the development is “that the new steel frame warehouse purchased from China arrived and construction commenced. The financial statement shows WIP at $49 million, with a zero balance in the November quarter.”

Bright profit spots but cloudy elsewhere

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A number of listed companies recently posted results for the second quarter of 2021, with some recording a strong rise in revenues and outstanding profits or lower losses than in 2020 and a few with lower profits.
Fontana had a good year to June and for the June quarter. The Junior Market listed company reported profit that surged 85 percent for the year to June of $512 million, with earnings per share of 41 cents, up from a profit of $277 million in 2020, with revenues rising 14 percent to $5.15 billion from $4.5 billion in 2020.
Blue Power suffered a reversal in fortunes, with a suspension of exports of soaps to Caricom, following a decision of the Jamaica Government to stop issuing Certificates of Origin for soaps manufactured in Jamaica, using imported soap noodles.
For the quarter to July, total revenues fell 23 percent from $150 million generated in 2020 to $116 million, leading to profits from operations dropping 62 percent to $8 million, from $21 million in the previous year, but gains on sales of investments of $26 million and other income, resulted in after tax profit of $46 million.
Jamaica Broilers posted revenues that surged 32 percent to $17.6 billion from $12.5 billion in 2020 for the first quarter to July 2021 but profit of $275 million dropped 28 percent from $383 million in 2020, as the Jamaican and Haitian segments posted lower profits for the quarter as the USA segment enjoyed a 84 percent jump.
Revenues at KLE Group recovered from just $7.8 million in the June quarter in 2020 to $38 million this year, with the half year returning revenues of $73 million versus $80.5 million in 2020, with losses showing slight improvement to $18 million for the quarter from $24.6 million in 2020 and from a loss of $43.7 million in 2020 half year to $40 million in 2021.

Scotia Group

Revenues at Lumber Depot increased 16 percent to $420 million in the  July quarter, this year, from $361 million in 2020, helping to drive profits 140 percent higher to $71.8 million, from $29.9 million in 2020. The strong increase resulted from a surge in gross profit margin from 18.7 percent in 2020 to 24.6 percent in the 2021 July quarter and contributed $26 million to the $42 million of increased profit.
Scotia Group reported a profit of $2.8 billion, an increase of 81 percent over the depressed 2020 third quarter and slightly more than the $2.7 billion generated in the April quarter. Profit for the nine months jumped 31 percent from $5.6 billion to $7.3 billion as expected credit loss provision fell sharply from $5.3 billion in 2020 to $1.99 billion for the nine months to July, thus negating a fall in interest income and increased operating expenses and taxation.

Is Fesco’s pricing rational?

Investors who bought shares in Future Energy Source in the IPO in April or a few months after are laughing all the way to the bank, with the price providing a gain of 311 percent up to Friday. The recent rally in the stock has moved it from an IPO price of 80 cents to $3.29 at the close on Friday, making it the highest valued Junior Market stock at a PE of 25 times current year’s earnings, with the next closest being, Honey Bun at 18.3.
With just 15 service stations within its network and the planned opening of the Beechwood Avenue station, there is much scope for the company to expand and grow profits in the future, but it seems a bit overdone for Fesco to be priced at a 38 percent premium to the next highest priced stock on the Junior Market.
The company’s latest financial report shows profit surging 55.5 percent to $40 million before taxes for the 2021 June quarter versus $25.7 million in the first quarter of 2020. Profit after taxes rose 66 percent from $24 million. There is no tax charge for the latest quarter, resulting from listing on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange. The tax incentive provides a 10 years tax concession, with no taxes payable for 5 years and at 50 percent of the normal rate for the second 5 years.
A 29.5 percent spike in the volume of fuel sold added 2.9 million litres to volume sales, helping to push revenues for the quarter up 58 percent to $1.9 billion from $1.2 billion in 2020 and much greater than the $1.5 billion generated in March 2021 quarter. Most of the June increase over the March quarter would be due to the increased price of imported fuel, emanating from the upward movement in world oil prices during the period. Sales for the June 2020 quarter, was negatively affected by disruption to business following the outbreak of covid-19 last year.

Beechwood Avenue service station, under construction.

The first quarter performance is ahead of the opening of the new Fesco Ferry service station on July 15, which is dealer owned and operated.
The Company recorded a gross profit of $55 million, an increase of 63.4 percent over the June 2020 quarter of $34 million.
Operating and administrative expenses for the 2021 first quarter popped 139 percent from $8.6 million to $20.5 million, due mainly to spending in new areas during the quarter, with no cost in 2020. Advertising consumed $2.9 million, directors fees $1.4 million, amortization of right of use assets $867,000, while legal and professional fees rose from $310,000 to $2 million and audit and accounting fees added $1 million, with virtually none in 2020.
Finance Income increased from $1.7 million to $6.4 million, with foreign exchange gains accounting for $4.4 million in the 2021 quarter. Interest cost was minimal at under $1 million in the 2020 and 2021 periods.
Current assets amount to $547 million and current liabilities $210 million, with net current assets of $336 million versus $145 million in 2020. Cash funds amount to $282 million and receivables and amounts due from related parties amount to $250 million.
Shareholders Equity stands at $582 million, up from $231 million at the end of June 2020, reflecting the net proceeds from the IPO earlier this year and an increase in retained earnings. The company outlaid $238 million in work in progress in building out the service station on Beechwood Avenue in Kingston, with $114 million incurred in the June quarter.

Barita APO to be priced at $80

Barita Investments‘ directors have approved the issue of 125 million ordinary shares at $80 each, with an option to upsize the amount issued by 62.5 million shares to raise $15 billion in an additional public issue (APO).
The New Ordinary Shares will be reserved for the benefit of certain specified investors in amounts determined at the discretion of the Company. The APO should open on September 3, or such other date as determined by the Group Chief Executive Officer and is to close on September 21, or such other date as determined by the Group Chief Executive Officers.
The original notice to the Jamaica Stock Exchange stipulated the issue of up to 160 million units that could have been upsized 80 million shares. Since the first notice to the Jamaica Stock Exchange, on August 5, the stock price moved up from the low $83.90 to $92.77, with the proposed price being a discount of nearly 14 percent.
The company reported nine months results to June, with profit after tax for the June quarter coming in at $1.6 billion, up a strong 62 percent from $990 million reported in 2020 June quarter and ended the quarter, with earnings per share of $1.48 versus $1.21 in 2020. Earnings for the nine months ended at $3.38 per share from after tax profit of $3.67 billion, up 82 percent from $2 billion in 2020.

Is Barita really worth as much as JMMB?

Barita Investments headquarters

JMMB Group reported profit at $1.7 billion, for the quarter ending June this year, with comprehensive income, a better measure of assessing management performance, of $3 billion. Barita Investments reported profit and comprehensive income of $1.6 billion, almost 50 percent less than JMMB’s comprehensive income and yet Barita’s shares are selling 2.6 times that of JMMB and the market value is 32 percent greater.
Barita has 1.085 billion shares issued to investors, with total assets of $84.5 billion and shareholders’ equity of only $30 billion. JMMB Group has 1.9 billion shares issued almost twice that of Barita and assets of $545 billion and shareholders’ equity of $63 billion, more than twice that of Barita, but the market has placed a higher value on the much smaller company.
At the close of trading on the Jamaica Stock Exchange on Wednesday, the market value for Barita is $99 billion and JMMB $75 billion, nearly 25 percent less than Barita. Why is the market pricing Barita at a steep premium to JMMB? Barita has only a small percentage of its stock in the public’s hands and therefore is enjoying a scarcity premium, while JMMB is far more liquid with more shares in the public’s hands.
ICInsider.com TOP10 selection revealed over the years is that most investors appear to chase momentum and popular stocks of the day than invest in stocks that are likely to be big winners down the road.
Seeking relevant and credible information for proper investment decisions is not an area of focus for many. Radio Jamaica is a case in point. The stock has been in the upper level of the Top 10 for the better part of a year and a half, with investors being fed with lots of information to inform them of the big run that was and is still ahead of them. They would not buy into it until the company released full year results in July and even then, only a few bought into what is now unfolding and reflected in the huge rise in the first quarter results. There is a huge demand for the stock that is not easy to find at current pricing levels.

Scotia Group.

The message from the market is that out of favour, stocks are the last to get a following, but the ones that are likely to deliver huge gains. There is the case of Salada Foods, where investors are buying the stock at 40 times earnings when the market is nowhere near that level, while they ignore JMMB Group, for example with PE less than 10.
Investors were treating Barita Investments in the same manner as JMMB is now when Barita was on IC TOP 10 until sometime after the switch in majority ownership to Cornerstone, but few would buy into what was a terrible undervalued stock with much promise.
JMMB enjoyed a big bounce in its June quarter earnings that saw profit 123 percent from $769 million in 2020, but those results were down 31 percent from the $1.1 billion generated in 2019 that makes the 2021 first quarter results so outstanding, as it is up 54 percent over the 2019 results.
Profit for Barita is up 62 percent from $990 million earned in the June quarter of 2020 and up 76 percent over the June 2019 quarter earnings of $910 million.
Interestingly, Scotia Group is worth just 24 percent more than Barita. If Barita gets investors to subscribe to the 240 million shares in the upcoming IPO and the stock price holds at the current level after the issue closes, Barita market value would surpass that of Scotia.

Q3 profit bolts 62% at Barita

Fresh from recommending the issue of new shares to their shareholders, the directors of Investment bankers, Barita Investments, approved the payment of an interim dividend of $3.029 per stock unit to be done on October 7, to shareholders as of September 23, 2021, to cost $3.29 billion.
The company also reported nine months results to June, with profit after tax for the June quarter coming in at $1.6 billion, up a strong 62 percent from $990 million reported in 2020 June quarter and ended the quarter, with earnings per share of $1.48 versus $1.21 in 2020. Earnings for the nine months ended at $3.38 per share from after tax profit of $3.67 billion, up 82 percent from $2 billion in 2020.

Barita eyeing acquisition.

Revenues net of interest expenses rose an impressive 75 percent in the quarter, to $2.64 billion from $1.5 billion and spiked 77 percent from $3.78 billion to $6.69 billion. Fees and commission income generated half of the revenues for the quarter in contributing $1.34 billion and $2.7 billion in the year to date period accounting for 41 percent of net revenues. Foreign exchange gains brought in $647 million in the quarter versus $321 million in 2020 and $1.78 billion year to date versus just $428 million in 2020. The above two areas are the fastest growing for the current fiscal year. Gain on investment activities is down in the quarter, from $257 million to $214 million and down from $1.1 billion in the nine months last year to $1 billion in 2021.
Expenses for the quarter surged 178 percent from $345 million in 2020 to $959 million and jumped 87 from $1.3 billion for the nine months to $2.43 billion. The latest results suggest that earnings per share for the full year could come close to $4.50, of course, with investment banking institutions, they could pick up or drop revenues in many different areas.
Shareholders approved the directors to issue 160 million shares to the public, its fourth capital raising foray since the majority shares in the company was acquired by Cornerstone United Holdings, but the issue may be upsized to as much as 240 million shares.
The shares to be issued may be upsized to a maximum of 80 million additional units if the invitation is oversubscribed. If all 240 million shares are taken up, the company could raise as much as $18 billion in fresh capital, ICInsider.com estimates on the basis that there will not be a steep discount to the price the stock has been mostly traded at up to last week.

Shareholders at Barita Investments AGM.

The pricing and date of the issue are to be determined by the directors, but the offer document seems to be with the Financial Services Commission awaiting signing off of the issue. The last APO was done in August of 2020, the offer document was dated July 30, at which time the JSE closing price was $57.93, with the last traded price of $54, the offer was set at $52 for the general public and existing shareholders. With the stock trading around $82 recently, the price for the new APO could be around $75 to $80. The company could offer existing shareholders a much steeper discount as they did back in 2019, in which case the total take would be less.
Barita Investments is listed on the Jamaica Stock Exchange and has total assets of $84 billion, up from $49 billion a year ago, with Shareholders’ equity of $30.3 billion in June 2021. The company has $2 billion invested in Derrimon Trading, shown as Investment in Associated Company on Barita’s balance sheet. Derrimon contributed $42 million to profit in the quarter.
On Monday, the shares closed trading at $90.24 after jumping $7.24 and boast a PE of 20 times this year’s earnings.

Big recovery for Medical Disposables profit

The financial performance saw a marked about turn for Medical Disposables & Supplies in the June quarter this year from a loss after tax of $7 million in 2020, into the black, with profit after taxation hitting $25.5 million, after with taxation amounting to $3.6 million, from an increase of 33.8 percent in sales revenue to $683 million, from $511 million in 2020.

The 2021 revenue performance not only beat that of 2020 but also the $557 million as well as the $16 million in profit in the June 2019 quarters and appears to be fully back on track from the dislocation experienced last year with the advent of Covid-19. The operations of the new subsidiary have not commenced a note to the financials states. Kurt Boothe Managing Director explained that MDS acquired the assets of the former company and at the time of the quarter end had not yet started trading as they were in the process of focussing on various systems to ensure a smooth and efficient running of the operations once they get started, which should be during the course of the second quarter ending September.“This increase in sales is the result of increased consumer demand for pharmaceutical and medical disposable items,” Kurt Boothe, General Manager stated in his commentary on the financials.
Gross profit was up 56.4 percent to $177 million from $113 million over the previous year “mostly attributable to the increase in sales of pharmaceutical and medical disposable products,” Boothe stated. Growth in gross profit also was the impact of better margins which moved up to 25.9 percent from just 22.1 percent in 2020.
Total operating expenses increased by 13.2 percent from $113.4 million in 2020 to $128.4 million in 2021. Administrative expenses rose 24.5 percent to $63 million in the quarter from $50 million. Although sales shot up sharply selling and promotional expenses increased by a mere 4.5 percent to $58.6 million, the cost is this area is mostly for distribution and delivery of goods Botyhe indicated as such increased volume sales do not necessarily mean increased cost as vehicles may be able to transport more goods per trip than before as such they benefit from economies of scale.  Finance cost jumped to $17 million from $12 million in 2020, partially due to the funding of the acquisition of the subsidiary.

Kurk Boothe – Medical Disposables Managing Director

The company operations generated a gross cash flow of $36 million but growth in receivables, inventories offset by increased payables saw inflows just balancing out. Net borrowings and investment in its new subsidiary resulted in a $37 million cash surplus for the period.
At the end of the quarter, Current assets ended at $1.63 billion including, inventories $910 million, trade and other receivables of $424 million, cash and bank balances of $111 million. Current liabilities ended the period at $1.09 billion. Net current assets ended the period at $540 million. Shareholders’ equity stood at $1.04 billion with long term borrowings at $324 million and short term at $402 million. Boothe indicated that he is optimistic that the trend seen so far will continue for the rest of the financial year.
Earnings per share came out at 10 cents for the quarter, with a loss of 3 cents for the 2020 period. IC Insider.com forecast is 80 cents per share for the fiscal year.  The stock traded at $4.98 on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange on Friday, with a PE of 6 times the current year’s earnings and compares favourably, with the market average of 12.7. Net asset value is $3.96 with the stock selling at a 26 percent premium to the book value, well below the average for the rest of the market.

Sweet profits for Honey Bun

Net profit at Honey Bun surged 221 percent above the 2020 June quarter to $65 million from just $20 million in 2020, with net profit for the nine months hitting $177 million for a 56 percent increase over $113 million earned in 2020.
Revenues rolled in for the quarter, with a 54 percent increase to $566 million, from $367 million last year and the nine months pulling in a 25 percent growth at $1.555 billion from $1.24 billion in the prior year. Export sales were up by 21 percent over the prior year,, the company revealed.
Gross profit for the quarter came in at $279 million, 61 percent over 2020, whilst the gross profit ratio closed at 48.3 percent, similar to the outturn in the prior year. Gross profit for the nine months came in at $751 million, 25 percent more than in the prior year, with $600 million with the gross profit ratio remaining consistent at 48.3 percent, as was the case in the prior year.
“The improvement was attributable to a number of factors, including the introduction of new products such as Cinnamon raisin loaf and the Hot dog roll,” Chief Executive Officer Michelle Chong and Herbert Chong, Chairman, advised shareholders in their management discussion and analysis report.
Administrative expenses increased 27.5 percent to $118.6 million $93 million in the June 2020 quarter, and for the nine months to June, the company incurred $335 million, up 21 percent from $277 million in 2020. Selling and distribution costs climbed 31 percent from $61 million in the June quarter in 2020 to $80 million and rose 9 percent to $208 million from $190 million in 2020. Taxation ended at $16.7 million from $2.6 million in the June 2020 quarter and jumped to $32.88 million for the nine months in 2021 from $17.75 million in 2020.
Gross cash flow brought in $230 million and ended with $259 million after working capital financing but ended with $78 million after addition to fixed assets of $84 million, $32 million for the acquisition of investments, loan payment of $4 and the payment of $59 million in dividends. The $84 million in capital expenditure was mainly used to upgrade the vehicle fleet to service new routes and acquire additional manufacturing equipment.
At the end of the quarter, Current assets ended with $574 million, including cash of $375 million and receivables of $82 million. Payables amount to $229 million and Net current assets ended the period $1.03 billion. Investments amount to $96 million at the end of the period, while Shareholders’ equity stands at $987 million, with borrowings at just $23 million.
Earnings per share came out at 14 cents for the quarter and 37 cents for the nine months. ICInsider.com forecasts earnings of 50 cents per share for the current year and 80 cents per share for 2022. The stock traded at $7.50 on the Junior Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange on Friday with a PE ratio of 15 times, current earnings and is above the Junior Market average of 12.7 but lower than the average of 17 the market was valued at in March this year.
The company’s tax holiday for listing on the Junior Market expired May 2021; as such, all earnings from June 2021 will be fully taxed at 25 percent less any tax credits. The company is well managed and is poised for further growth; the stock can be scarce and may not be easy to get at the current price.