EcoWorld Malaysia said the strong cashflows generated from sales, steady loan repayments and the group’s strict financial discipline resulted in continued improvement of EcoWorld Malaysia’s gearing position. KUALA LUMPUR: Eco World Development Group Bhd (EcoWorld Malaysia) recorded sales of RM2.3bil in the financial year ended Oct 31,2020, exceeding its RM2bil sales by 15%. According to its statement issued on Thursday, the stronger sales target was underpinned by the fourth quarter sales which exceeded RM1bil -- it was also higher than the RM960mil sales in the third quarter. “Collectively, 2H 2020 sales comprise 85% of total sales in FY2020, ” it said in a statement. Revenue in 4Q 2020 was the highest recorded in the four quarters of FY2020, which was a strong rebound in both sales as well as construction progress, following gradual relaxation of the Movement Control Order (MCO) from 3Q 2020 onwards. “However, gross profit was lower than FY2019 mainly due to closure of sales galleries during the MCO, the temporary cessation of site activities from mid-March to mid-June and the cumulative impact of inventories written down in 3Q 2020 and 4Q 2020, ” it said. EcoWorld Malaysia said in order to mitigate the impact of the lower gross profit, extensive cost control measures were implemented group-wide. This cost-saving strategy enabled it to record total savings of RM84.5mil in selling, marketing and administration expenses in FY2020. During the FY20, it posted profit before tax (PBT) of RM169mil and profit after tax (PAT) of RM135.2mil in FY2020. “If not for the write down on inventories of RM98.8mil, PBT would have been RM268mil which is slightly higher than FY2019 PBT of RM266mil, ” it said. EcoWorld Malaysia said the strong cashflows generated from sales, steady loan repayments and the group’s strict financial discipline resulted in continued improvement of EcoWorld Malaysia’s gearing position. “Future revenue remains strong at RM3.7bil as at Oct 31. Apart from being among the highest in the industry, the ratio of future revenue/ net debt which stands at 1.3 times is also well above that of most other property developers. “This will continue to provide both earnings visibility and cashflow certainty going forward, ” it said. It declared a maiden interim dividend of two sen per share to its shareholders for FY2020. For FY2021, EcoWorld Malaysia targets sales of RM2.875bil which is a 25% increase from the actual RM2.3bil sales achieved in FY2020. Its president and CEO Datuk Chang Khim Wah (file pic, above) said the resurgence in buying interest following the re-opening of its sales galleries in 3Q 2020 continued throughout 4Q 2020. “As a result, EcoWorld Malaysia recorded almost RM2bil sales in 2H 2020. We are indeed grateful to our customers for their tremendous vote of confidence in our properties and projects which enabled us to achieve a total of RM2.3bil sales for FY2020, exceeding the sales target set by a comfortable 15% margin, ” he said. Chang also said apart from the solid performance of its residential developments, rising demand for the group’s business park projects, which saw sales increase by 193% from RM75.2mil in 3Q YTD 2020 to RM220.4mil in 4Q YTD 2020, also contributed to the overall sales achieved. “A little known fact about EcoWorld Malaysia is the size of our industrial portfolio. We are quite a big player in this space with approximately 1,760 acres under development. “This gives us total gross development value (GDV) of RM9.5bil from our four Eco Business Parks located in Senai, Tebrau and Pasir Gudang in Iskandar Malaysia and Puncak Alam in Selangor. “As at Oct 31,2020 we have achieved cumulative sales of RM2.1bil from our business parks segment, ” he said. As for FY21, EcoWorld Malaysia intends to further grow our share of this important market. “We are confident that the uptick in buying interest we experienced in 4Q 2020 can be sustained. The attractive tax and other incentives offered by the Malaysian Government under PENJANA and as announced in Budget 2021, to increase foreign direct as well as local private investments in key industries and service sectors, will help underpin the growing demand, ” Chang said.
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