SINGAPORE (Apr 28): iFAST has reported a doubling of 1Q18 earnings to $2.8 million from $1.8 million a year ago on higher revenue.
A first interim dividend of 0.75 cents has been proposed.
Revenue for the quarter grew 40.1% to $31 million from $22.1 million in 1Q17, bolstered by growth in the group’s business and assets under administration (AUA) for both its business-to-customer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) divisions over the period.
iFAST says that over the quarter, the company hit a record high of assets under administration (AUA) of $8.07 billion as at end-Mar 2018, which it attributes to the group’s continued efforts to widen its range of investment products and services, as well as strengthen its financial technology (fintech) capabilities of its platforms in the various markets over recent years.
The Singapore operation remains the major contributor of the group’s revenue, with the Singapore operation revenue contributions growing 33.4% on-year due to significant increases in investment subscription amounts (including transfer-in amounts) in unit trusts (UTs), exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and stocks.
In Hong Kong, revenue grew 58.4% on-year with AUA registering a 32.6% growth. Both came on the back of a significant increase in investment subscription amounts from customers, especially in the B2B business division in the period, says iFAST.
In Malaysia, a significant growth of UT business and AUA contributed to an increase in revenue of 60.9% over the quarter, boosted by the launch of the group’s bond business and robo-advisory portfolio service. AUA of the Malaysia operation grew 44.3% on-year.
While the China operation also registered a revenue and AUA increase, the group says it remains in the early stages of building the iFAST brand among potential clients and investment practitioners in China’s wealth management industry.
While the management says China’s losses in 2018 are expected to be comparable to 2017, in the years ahead, it expects China to be an important contributor to the group.
In all, iFAST expects its business performance in 2018 to be better than the year before, with the dividend per share for FY18 to be higher than FY17.
Shares in iFAST closed flat at 90 cents.