SINGAPORE (Feb 11): Oxley Holdings has reported a 33% decline in earnings to $45.2 million for the 2Q19 ended December, from $68.0 million a year ago.

2Q19 revenue fell 12% to $355.5 million, from $406.1 million a year ago, mainly due to lower revenue contribution from the project in the UK.

Gross profit fell 33% to $46.4 million in 2Q19, as gross profit margin fell 4 percentage points due to lower margin on the development project in the UK.

Other gains for 2Q19 increased to $51.5 million, compared with $3.9 million in 2Q18, mainly due to fair value gain of investment properties in Dublin.

Oxley registered a share of loss from equity-accounted associates and joint ventures of $0.2 million in 2Q19, compared to a share of profit of $60.6 million a year ago. This was mainly due to absence of contribution from The Bridge project which was completed in FY18.

Finance costs increased by 70% to $26.9 million in 2Q19, mainly due to an increase in amount of bank loans to support the group’s acquisitions of properties and for advances extended to joint ventures, as well as higher interest rates.

Net gearing increased to 2.55 times, compared to 2.17 times as at June 30, 2018. This was due to the increase in bank borrowings to support the acquisition of Singapore development projects and advances to joint ventures.

Oxley says it had on Jan 10 accepted a Letter of Intent for the sale of Novotel and Mercure hotels at 28 and 30 Stevens Road at a consideration of $950 million.

On Jan 21, it announced the sale of No. 4 and No. 5 of Dublin Landings in Ireland for a total of 204 million euros ($320 million). A week later, Oxley announced that a letter agreement was entered for proposed sale of part of Blocks B and E of Dublin Landings for 175.5 million euros.

The group says the sale of these properties is expected to contribute positively to its cashflows and will reduce the group’s gearing significantly.

As at end December, cash and cash equivalents stood at $248.5 million.

Earnings per share (EPS) fell to 1.12 cents for 2Q19, from 1.75 cents a year ago. Net asset value (NAV) dipped to 34.14 cents, from 35.51 cents a year ago.

Oxley has declared an interim dividend of 0.32 cent for the period, 55.6% lower than the interim dividend of 0.72 cent a year ago.

As at Feb 10, the group had total unbilled contract value of $3.3 billion, of which approximately $1.7 billion was attributable to the projects in Singapore and approximately $1.6 billion was attributable to overseas projects.

“Oxley is pleased with the performance of the diversified portfolio of development and investment projects in Singapore and overseas. We are well-positioned to tap on the growing demand for quality and affordable housing in the Asia-Pacific and Europe regions,” says Ching Chiat Kwong, executive chairman and CEO of Oxley.

Shares in Oxley closed flat at 30 cents on Monday.