Aitken Spence PLC made an impressive comeback in the first quarter ending 30th June 2021 by recording a 145% increase in Profit Before Tax (PBT) of Rs. 1.2 billion compared to Rs. 513 million in the previous year from the non-tourism sectors. The Group’s non-tourism sectors recorded a 96% increase in EBITDA (Earnings-inclusive of equity accounted investees, before interest expenses, tax, depreciation and amortization) of Rs. 1.9 billion compared to Rs. 990 million in the previous year.
The non-tourism sectors include companies in the maritime and freight logistics, renewable energy, elevator agency, money transfer services, printing and packaging, plantations, apparel, insurance and maritime education and management segments.
The Group’s revenue for the quarter increased by 54.5% to Rs. 8.5 billion compared to Rs. 5.5 billion in the previous year while the Loss Before Tax (PBT) for the quarter decreased by 79.6% to Rs. 467.3 million compared to Rs. 2.3 billion in the previous year. The Group’s profits from operations increased by 104% which is a notable improvement to record a profit of Rs. 72 million compared to a loss of Rs. 1.7 billion in the previous year’s quarter.
The Maritime and Freight Logistics sector recorded a growth in PBT of 84% to reach Rs. 845 million which was driven by an improved performance in freight management and liner shipping segments, and overseas port management operations. The Strategic Investments sector recorded a significant growth in PBT of 798% to reach Rs. 296 million, which was augmented by the contribution from the Group’s investments in hydropower and waste to energy which were recent additions to the portfolio. The Services sector performance was commendable, recording PBT of Rs. 117 million which is a growth of 21% compared to the previous year with a strong contribution from the money transfer segment. Companies in these sectors continued their operations and performed exceptionally well during the quarter amid constant travel restrictions and lockdowns imposed by the respective Governments in the operating countries.
The Tourism sector showed promising results with an increase in revenue and reduction in losses during the first quarter. One of the main contributing factors was the overseas hotels in Maldives which were operational during the first quarter. The Group’s Tourism sector recorded a loss of Rs. 1.7 billion which was notably lower than the previous year’s loss of Rs. 2.8 billion.
“We are extremely proud of our hard-working teams across the Group who have shown their true Spensonian grit through purposeful leadership that has led to outstanding results despite being in industries that are heavily impacted by the pandemic that continues to hamper business growth. It echoes their perseverance and ability to adapt amidst many setbacks. We remain cautiously optimistic for a stronger recovery in the Group and particularly in the Tourism sector than achieved during the first quarter,” commented Dr. Parakrama Dissanayake, Deputy Chairman and Managing Director, Aitken Spence PLC.