SINGAPORE (July 17): Fish farmer Qian Hu Corporation has reported a net loss of $525,000 for 1HFY2020 ended 30 June 2020, compared to earnings of $273,00 from the year earlier.

In the same period, its revenue dropped by 12.7% y-o-y to $33.2 million, as its supply chains were hit by the Covid-19 outbreak, thereby affecting the export of both its ornamental and edible fish. 

With air cargo capacity curbed, Qian Hu was curtailed in how much it can export. For the six months, its revenue from fish dropped by 25.7% to $11.9 million.

Its plastics business suffered a revenue dip of 19.4% to $4.6 million even with higher demand for storage and packaging materials during the Covid-19 lockdown, as it lost a major customer.

However, its accessories business enjoyed a slight increase in sales of 2.2% to $16.8 million. 

“Looking ahead, our business outlook remains extremely challenging, at least for the second half of FY2020,” warns executive chairman and managing director Kenny Yap.

“Until a vaccine is successfully developed, or a viable solution is found to eradicate Covid-19, the global economic landscape remains very fluid,” he says.

“While we are not able to control the external environment, we can, however, do what we must to renew our products and processes, continue to innovate, and digitalise our operations,” he adds.

Going forward, the company plans to expand the domestic production networks within each of its main markets, as a way to cope with the breakdown in supply chains.

In addition, Qian Hu is beefing up its edible fish and seafood business. For example, just this month, it has started the commercial farming of freshwater shrimps in Desaru on a site covering 200 acres. The company expects this venture to start contributing earnings this current half year.

"We believe that the aquaculture business would be many times bigger than our current core ornamental fish segment - we expect it to be a sustainable engine of growth that will further secure Qian Hu’s future," says Yap.

As at June 30 2020, Qian Hu’s net asset value was 44.92 cents. 

Qian Hu shares closed July 17 at 13 cents, valuing the company at $14.76 million.