Income plunges at Century City and Paliburg

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 11 September, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 11 September, 2008, 12:00am

Century City International Holdings and Paliburg Holdings, property developers led by chairman Lo Yuk-sui, posted a significant drop in interim net profit due to a special gain from an asset sale the previous year.

Paliburg posted a 74.6 per cent drop in net profit for the six months to June to HK$305.1 million from HK$1.2 billion previously, while revenue dropped 32 per cent to HK$150 million.

The interim dividend was unchanged at 18 HK cents per share.

Century City, a Paliburg subsidiary saw its profit slump 66.6 per cent to HK$210.3 million while turnover fell 38 per cent to HK$150.2 million. It proposed an interim dividend of 5 HK cents a share, the same as last year.

Mr Lo said he expected the mainland property market to continue its correction this year because many developers had over-expanded and were loaded with debt.

That would provide acquisition opportunities for cash-rich players such as the Century City group.

The group would mainly explore the mainland property market through its listed arm Cosmopolitan International Holdings, Mr Lo said.

Regarding a proposed joint-venture energy project in Mongolia, Mr Lo said Century City would take a cautious approach in assessing it, taking into consideration the recent political and economic developments in the country.

The company entered an agreement in April to acquire a 51.8 per cent stake in Mongolia-incorporated mineral explorer Chain Bright for HK$100 million and the completion deadline for the deal has been postponed to the end of this year.

Meanwhile, Mr Lo expects Paliburg's joint-venture residential project in Ap Lei Chau to be completed within two years and generate 'a considerable profit' for the company. Paliburg holds 30 per cent of the project.

Separately, Century City, Paliburg and Regal Hotels International Holdings proposed to consolidate 10 shares into one and change the board lot size for trading from 2,000 shares to 4,000 consolidated shares.