SINGAPORE (May 9): Raffles Education reported net loss attributable to shareholders widened to $9.4 million for the 9M17 ended March from $6.5 million a year ago.

Group revenue for 3Q17 declined 14% to $73.1 million from $85 million a year ago due to the discontinuation and teach-out of its joint venture college, Raffles Shanghai; lower utility income from investment properties in Oriental University City Limited (OUCL) as the provision of utility services was taken over by a third party; as well as a decrease in rental income from investment properties in Oriental University City Holdings (HK) (OUCHK) as the number of students renting accommodations fell.

Other income fell to $2.4 million over the quarter from $4.3 million a year ago on the absence of a $1.4 million fair value gain, when the company increased its shareholding in Raffles College of Higher Education Sdn. Bhd. in FY16.

Finance costs fell to $2.8 million from $4.1 million in the previous year due to the repayment of interest bearing $80 million bonds in 3Q16.

Share of results in joint ventures fell 48% to -$1.3 million from -$2.5 million as it included a share of exchange loss of $0.3 million recorded by a joint venture, as compared to a loss of $0.7 million recorded in 3Q16.

Additionally, the group recorded $12.1 million in currency translation loss arising from the consolidation of foreign operations, mainly from the translation of OUCL and OUCHK’s RMB2.3 billion net asset value as at March 31.

Property, plant and equipment grew to $408.2 million in 3Q17 from $362.6 million for the financial year ended Jun 30, 2016, due to additions of $42.4 million.

This was mainly from construction work in progress for Raffles American School (RAS) in Iskandar, Malaysia; the purchase of a new piece of land by Wanbo Institute of Science & Technology for the upgrading of the college to university status; in addition to the completion of purchase of 65 acres of land for Raffles University Iskandar.

Raffles Education notes unfavourable macroeconomic conditions in the world, especially in the region and China, where it expects currency volatility and uncertain global interest rate movements to continue presenting challenges to the group.

While facing increasing competition, higher manpower costs and a more stringent regulatory environment which is expected to have an adverse effect on the group’s operations, Raffles Education says it will continue to seek opportunities for growth.

Shares of Raffles Education closed 2.4% lower at 20 cents on Tuesday.