May 17, Colombo: The Singer Group reported revenue amounting to Rs 58.5 billion for the twelve-month period 2018/19, compared to Rs. 53.1 billion for same period in the prior year with a growth of 10% whilst compared to Rs 65.1 billion revenue during the fifteen month period of 2017/2018 as appears in the published Financial Statements.
For the 2018/19 financial year, the Group encountered multiple challenges including a prolonged drought and sluggish market conditions which lasted throughout the year. Additional adverse impacts such as rupee devaluation, increased borrowings due to import restrictions and imposition of 100% LC margins, higher impairment costs arising from new accounting standards and new levies on Financial Sector hampered growth potential and profit earnings.
The Group recorded an Operating profit of Rs. 3.997 billion for the twelve months ending 31st March 2019 and a profit of Rs. 672 million before tax and Rs. 386 million after tax for the twelve month period.
Fourth quarter Group Revenue increasing by a marginal 3%, Group operating profit for the same period decreased 29% to Rs. 754 million from Rs. 1.057 billion when compared to the previous year. Group Profit after Tax showed similar sentiment decreasing to Rs. 33 million for the fourth quarter against a net profit of Rs. 212 Million during the preceding year.
Net finance cost increased by 20% to Rs. 3.033 billion for the twelve-month period ending 31 March 2019 compared to Rs. 2.531 billion for the fifteen-month period which ended on 31 March 2018. This was mainly due to the 26% increase in the Group's total borrowings together with the relatively high cost of funds, currency fluctuations, rupee devaluations and additional borrowing.
Positive sentiments for the year included the Company subsidiary Singer Finance (Lanka) PLC reporting a twelve-month profit of Rs. 542 Million against a profit of Rs. 523 Million in the fifteen-month period in the prior year.
However, declines were reported in Singer Industries (Ceylon) PLC which posted a profit of Rs. 21.9 Million for the current twelve months versus a profit of Rs. 57.9 Million for the prior period and in Regnis (Lanka) PLC Group which posted reduced profits of Rs. 72 Million during the twelve months when compared to Rs. 91 Million during the prior year.
Commenting on the results, Mahesh Wijewardene, Group Chief Executive Officer said, "A volatile twelve months impacted our market-sensitive businesses, including challenging economic conditions which resulted in a sluggish consumer durables market. However, we managed our costs admirably during this difficult period and have also taken strategically important steps to align certain key operations aiming future."
Mohan Pandithage, Group Chairman, said, "Despite the events during the year having negatively impacted our business we will continue to build the pipeline towards future growth."
Singer (Sri Lanka) Group is the largest retailer, financier and manufacturer of consumer durables in Sri Lanka. The company has 437 retail stores as well as a fast growing e-commerce platform.
The company also serves over 2800 dealers/sub retailers. It is also renowned for its after-sales service network with 14 Regional Service Centers and over 300 service agents. Apart from its household brands, the company is exclusive distributor for many well-known international consumer durable brands.