Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd (F&N) reported a 26% increase in net profit to RM86 million for its fourth quarter ended 30 September 2020 (Q4), with a small contraction in Group revenue to RM953.7 million.
In a filing with Bursa Malaysia, the company said despite higher commodity cost, group profit before tax grew 21%to RM108.3 million due to prudent cost controls on overheads and lower advertising and promotions (A&P) spending.
It also added that excluding the gain on disposal of “TEAPOT” trademark amounting to RM7.8 million, Covid-19 related expenses recognised in the current quarter, and other one-off/non-operating items in both periods, profit before tax improved by 15.1%.
The Group recorded a revenue of RM3.99 billion for FY2020 while maintaining profit after tax at RM410.1 million despite the pandemic and commodity price pressures.
According to Lim Yew Hoe, Chief Executive Officer of F&N, the group’s performance this year is bolstered by continued efforts in delivering innovative products with effective operational execution to meet consumers’ expectations throughout the year despite challenging circumstances.
“While we prioritised the availability of our core products to the market, we continued to offer new healthier and better value products that resonated with our consumers,” Lim said.
Against a challenging backdrop, exports from Malaysia achieved close to 10% growth driven by more robust sales to the Middle East and Africa, and ASEAN markets. Indochina markets (managed by F&B Thailand) also performed strongly this year with Cambodia and Laos collectively contributing over RM200 million in revenue.
In a statement, Lim said total exports from Malaysia and Thailand contributed RM796 million revenue to the Group this year, a noteworthy achievement in light of the pandemic.
“We would have overachieved our target Group export sales of RM800 million in FY2020 in normal circumstances,” he added.
Commenting on F&N’s outlook in the upcoming financial year, Lim said that the Group remains cautious amid the Covid-19 pandemic and local uncertainties as both local and global situations remain fluid and uncertain.
“While mindful of our operating environment, this pandemic has provided us an opportunity for reset and to ‘reimagine’ our business strategies to fuel growth and innovation,” the CEO said, adding that maintaining business as efficiently as possible while safeguarding the wellbeing of their employees and the community remains a top priority.
“We will continue to focus on process improvements and digitalisation, and relentlessly pursue opportunities to build a stronger and more sustainable business for the future through continued investments in CAPEX and our brands.”
The Group remains committed to its customers and consumers’ satisfaction by adopting innovative strategies to boost customer experience and engagement through F&N Life platform as well as through working closely with e-commerce partners in both Malaysia, Thailand and overseas markets.