Singapore stock watch: EC World Reit, Silverlake Axis, Food Empire

We examine the latest financial highlights from three Singapore mainboard-listed stocks.

EC World Reit (SGX: BWCU)

EC World Asset Management Pte. Ltd., the manager of EC World Real Estate Investment Trust (EC World Reit) reported a 30.9% year-on-year growth in revenue and net property income (NPI) for the first quarter of 2021 to S$30.8 million and S$27.7 million respectively.

Total amount available for distribution consequently increased 40.3% to S$13.7 million for the quarter.

The manager has resolved to distribute 90% of the total amount available for distribution to unitholders, with the retained amount in view of uncertainties arising from the prolonged Covid-19 pandemic globally and for general working capital purpose.

Distribution per unit came in at S$0.01532, which is 32.3% higher year-on-year and 7.4% higher than 4Q FY2020.

EC World Reit says it ‘continues to maintain a healthy occupancy rate’ in the earnings release. As of 31 March 2021, the occupancy of ECW’s eight properties was 99.1%.

Looking ahead, the manager expects the renewal of its lease at Hengde Logistics to provide stability to EC World Reit. It also forecasts that the Reit’s properties with master leases and embedded rental escalation will provide organic growth to the portfolio.

EC World Reit shares rallied over 2% the day after the release of its Q1 2021 results.

Silverlake Axis (SGX: 5CP)

Singapore Exchange Mainboard listed Silverlake Axis saw its revenue decline 7% year-on-year to 140.9 million ringgit in the third quarter of 2021.

Profit After Tax in Q3 2021 of 38.7 million ringgit was higher by 51% as compared to the 25.6 million ringgit in Q3 2020. However, Profit After Tax for the first nine months of 2021 (9M 2021) of 106.2 million ringgit was lower by 15% as compared to the 125.6 million ringgit recorded in 9M 2020.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) in Q3 2021 of 59.6 million ringgit was 11% higher as compared to the 53.4 million ringgit in Q3 2020. However, EBITDA in 9M 2021 of 195.2 million ringgit was 11% lower as compared to the 218.3 million ringgit in 9M 2020.

Looking ahead, the group remarked that the prospects for the industry and sectors that it primarily serves ‘remain subdued’ due to the pandemic.

‘With no clear end in sight despite some successes from mass vaccinations, we expect the next few quarters to be dominated by the continuing uncertainty,’ it stated.

Nevertheless, it sees bright spots emerging, including cost and revenue synergies, as well as a new pricing model for customers.

Silverlake Axis shares climbed over 4% to S$0.25 on Wednesday (12 May 2021).

Food Empire (SGX: F03)

Food Empire Holdings Limited achieved a group revenue of US$76.8 million in 1Q 2021 compared to US$74.2 million in 1Q 2020.

This was mainly due to higher sales contribution from the group’s Southeast Asia market, partially offset by lower contribution from the group’s CIS and Russia markets.

The drop in the group’s CIS and Russia markets was related to Covid-19 disruptions and logistical and supply chain delays at ports of discharge due to lack of shipping containers worldwide, the company said.

The group’s net profit before tax for 1Q 2021 was US$8.6 million, an increase of 10.5% year-on-year, thanks in part to lower foreign exchange loss as well as lower sales related expenses in core markets.

Looking ahead, the group says that the emergence of new Covid-19 strains, coupled with the current waves of Covid-19 infection in Asia, ‘may cause temporary disruptions to business operations’.

‘We will continue to monitor the pandemic situation closely while ensuring the safety and morale of our staff during these difficult times,’ the company noted.

Despite the uncertainty and volatility, Food Empire’s board of directors is confident that the group’s businesses will remain resilient, backed by a healthy balance sheet.

Food Empire shares are up 0.6% as at 14:30 SGT on Wednesday.

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