Raffles Medical Group (RMG) has reported earnings of $65.9 million for the FY2020 ended December, 9.3% higher than earnings of $60.3 million a year ago.

This brings earnings per share (EPS) to 3.58 cents, from FY2019’s 3.32 cents.

Group revenue for the FY2020 grew 8.8% y-o-y to $568.2 million as the group pivoted to meet the needs of the evolving healthcare situation amid Covid-19.

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For instance, the group’s physicians, nurses and supporting staff undertook air border screening, swabbing of foreign workers and air travellers and caring for foreign workers who tested positive for Covid-19.

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In addition, the group started new services such as the Covid-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) and serology testing.

During this period, RMG also cared for more acute patients under the Emergency Care Collaboration (ECC) with the Ministry of Health (MOH).

These initiatives have helped the group bounce back from the 5.4% lower revenue of $241.4 million and 38.2% lower PATMI for the 1HFY2020 when it was impacted by the measures brought about by the pandemic.

Revenue from the Healthcare and Hospital Services divisions for the FY2020 grew 17.8% and 2.1% y-o-y to $281.3 million and $312.8 million respectively.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) grew 17.6% y-o-y to $123.9 million.

On the back of revenue and earnings growth, the group has recommended a final dividend of 2.0 cents per share. This brings the total dividend for the FY2020 to 2.5 cents a share, which includes the interim dividend of 0.5 cents per share paid in October 2020.

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With effect from FY2021, the board proposes to consolidate its interim and final dividends into an annual core dividend of up to half its average sustainable PATMI.

The board may also consider paying a special dividend as part of a holistic capital management framework that recognises that the group is in a “growth phase”, with low gearing and an intention to grow its earnings on a per share basis.

“This overall framework was also used in the decision not to offer a scrip dividend option this year. For the transition year FY2021 and barring unforeseen circumstances, the group expects to pay a total core and special dividend of not less than 2.5 cents per share,” it says.

In its outlook statement, the group says it will continue to support the government’s efforts at combating Covid-19.

Furthermore, it seeks to develop and invest in its digital platform to expand its reach and improve patients’ experience.

Due to the uncertainty of the Covid-19 situation, the group adds that it expects its operations to be affected by sporadic outbreaks and localised lockdowns.

It also has decided that it will set aside 1% of its PATMI to donate to “worthy causes” as well as participating in joint projects with charitable organisations for the next five years from FY2021.

Based on the current conditions, the group says it expects to remain profitable in FY2021.

“The resilience, dedication and agility of our workforce, coupled with the strategic investments and austere planning by the Group have allowed us to emerge stronger amidst this pandemic, with a healthy performance to give back to our shareholders and staff who have contributed,” says Dr Loo Choon Yong, executive chairman at Raffles Medical Group.

On the decision to dedicate a portion of its PATMI to philanthropic programmes, which is a key pillar of its environmental, social and governance (ESG) strategy, Loo adds, “This is a commitment that extends beyond philanthropic giving, but it is a group-wide effort that will engage and inspire our employees and stakeholders alike, to abide by the care we owe to our communities. As a healthcare company and a home-grown Singapore brand, our unique Raffles’ experience, expertise and infrastructure will empower us to make a significant difference and impact many lives in our communities.”

Shares in Raffles Medical Group closed 0.5 cent higher or 0.5% up at 98.5 cents on Feb 19.