Revaluation gains boost Shun Tak
Shun Tak Holdings said half-year profit jumped 159.93 per cent as a gain from revaluation of investment properties more than offset lower dividends from its 15.8 per cent-owned casino operator controlled by Stanley Ho Hung-sun.
Net profit jumped to HK$677.6 million in the first half from HK$260.7 million a year ago.
Turnover rose 12.29 per cent to HK$1.37 billion.
Revaluation gain jumped to HK$291.2 million from HK$22.7 million. The gain stemmed from a wholly owned hotel site in Macau and a 79 per cent-owned columbarium development in the city's Taipa district, a spokeswoman said.
The hotel site will generate a total gross floor area of 200,000 sq ft, while the Taipa site can be developed into property with a gross floor area of 70,000 sq ft.
However, its investment income, mainly dividends from the 15.8 per cent-owned Sociedade de Turismo e Diversoes de Macau (STDM), plunged 39.44 per cent to HK$68.95 million in the first half from HK$113.87 million a year ago.
Dividends from STDM, which owns 80 per cent of casino operator Sociedade de Jogos de Macau (SJM), fell 43.87 per cent to HK$60.9 million from HK$108.5 million.
The spokeswoman said STDM paid more dividends in the first half last year after SJM made a gain by granting a gaming sub-licence to MGM Mirage in 2005.
In April 2005, SJM sold its sub-licence for US$200 million to a joint venture between Mr Ho's daughter, Pansy Ho Chiu-king, and US casino developer MGM Mirage.
A decline in STDM's revenue last year, before the HK$5 billion Grand Lisboa Casino hotel opened, also affected dividend payment this year, the spokeswoman added.
Operating profit from property sales increased 27.33 per cent to HK$59.49 million from HK$46.72 million.
More than 98 per cent of units at Nova City II in Taipa had been pre-sold, the company said, adding that units were ready by the second quarter of this year.
Shun Tak's operating profit from transport operations, mainly ferry services between Hong Kong and Macau, fell 5.13 per cent to HK$123.86 million.
The decline was due to a HK$23.5 million charge for special staff bonuses to mark the TurboJet's 45th anniversary this year.
Shun Tak declared an interim dividend of seven HK cents, up 55.55 per cent from 4.5 HK cents last year.
Shares of Shun Tak rose 3.18 per cent to close at HK$13 yesterday.