Singer Sri Lanka in losses, but sees demand begin to recover

ECONOMYNEXT – Singer Sri Lanka Plc, a consumer durables group with a financing arm, has reported a loss of 52 million rupees for the September 2019 quarter, down from a 144 million rupee loss last year, but said consumer demand appeared to be recovering.

The group reported a loss of 7 cents per share for the quarter. Singer closed trading flat at 27 rupees a share on Friday.

The firm said revenues and margins had started to recover from the currency collapse last year and Eastern Sunday attacks in April.

“April being one of the peak selling months took a serious hit as a result of the Easter Sunday attacks and surrounding events,” the Singer said in a statement.

“The company’s profitability was adversely affected due to the uncertainty which engulfed both the economy and the consumer.

“However, an upturn in market sentiment has been seen in recent months with a gradual improvement in sales volumes and recovery from the lows of April on the horizon.”

Gross revenues were flat at 13.2 billion rupees in the September 2019 quarter, from 13.4 billion rupees a year earlier, cost of sales fell to 8.9 billion rupees from 9.4 billion rupees, while direct interest costs rose to 478 million rupees from 280 million rupees.

Gross profits were marginally up to 3.78 billion rupees from 3.73 billion rupees.

At the core consumer durables company, revenues grew to 10.5 billion rupees from 9.8 billion rupees a year earlier and gross profits rose to 2.97 billion rupees from 2.73 billion.

In the six months to September gross profits rose to 6.4 billion rupees from 6.0 billion rupees.

Margins grew 1 percent, the firms said.

“This is a significant improvement when compared with sluggish market conditions, strong competition in consumer durable market, exchange fluctuation,” the firm said.

The company echoes a positive outlook with gradual margin improvements and price adjustments made in major product categories through lower discounts and managing costs in several expenses categories. (Colombo/Nov11/2019)