SINGAPORE (Feb 17): Medical oncology and stem cell services provider TalkMed Group saw its earnings jump 20.7% to $11.6 million for 4QFY2019 ended December, from $9.6 million a year ago.

Earnings per share climbed to 0.88 cent in 4QFY2019, compared to 0.73 cent for 4QFY2018.

This brings full year earnings to $35.8 million for FY2019, some 23.7% higher than a year ago.

In 4QFY2019, revenue for the group increased 16.6% to $22.10 million on the back of an increase in the number of patient visits.

Notably, revenue derived from 60%-owned subsidiary Stem Med, which is involved in stem cell processing and storage services, jumped 62.5% to $2.2 million in FY2019.

Net asset value per share rose to 6.32 cents as of Dec 31, 2019, from 5.61 cents a year ago.

As at end December, cash and cash equivalents stood at $80.7 million.

The group has proposed a final dividend of 1.3 cents per share, to be paid on May 11, 2020.

This is 22% higher than the final dividend of 1.065 cents paid a year ago.

Looking ahead, the group says it is facing pressure on revenue from the competition arising from lower medical costs in neighbouring countries.

It adds that the outbreak of the COVID-19 coronavirus is also likely to affect its Singapore operations as well as that of its Hong Kong associate.

Shares in TalkMed closed half a cent lower, or down 1.0%, at 50.5 cents on Monday, before the results announcement.