Henderson Land profit soars 159pc

PUBLISHED : Friday, 26 August, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 26 August, 2011, 12:00am


A big jump in sales from newly released projects helped Henderson Land Development to a 159 per cent increase in underlying profit to HK$3.428 billion for the six months to June 30.

The surge in underlying profit came as the company sold flats in completed projects such as 39 Conduit Road in Mid-Levels, Casa Marina in Tai Po, and The Beverly Hills.

Hong Kong's fourth-largest developer by market value said it sold 281 residential flats in the first half, generating attributable sales revenue of HK$6.93 billion. This compared with HK$2.44 billion for the same period last year (before a HK$734 million charge for the failed sales of 20 luxury apartments at 60 per cent-owned 39 Conduit Road).

Bottom-line profit, including property revaluation gains, was HK$8.824 billion, up 7 per cent from the restated HK$8.262 billion a year earlier.

Directors declared an interim dividend of 30 HK cents a share, unchanged from last year. The interim dividend will be payable in cash, with an option to receive new and fully paid shares in lieu of cash under the scrip dividend scheme.

Earnings per share were HK$3.92 against HK$3.84 in the first half of 2010.

Despite uncertainties surrounding the Hong Kong housing market, the developer said that given the city's solid economic fundamentals, it would continue to expedite its sales programmes and construction process.

It said 4,000 flats would be available for sale up to mid-2012. These include two urban redevelopment projects at Po Tuck Street, and Boundary Street; La Verte, in Fanling; and projects in Wu Kai Sha, Ma On Shan; and Tai Tong Road, Yuen Long.

Since many buyers were still coming from various mainland cities Henderson said in response to the trend it would set up another two exhibition centres in Haikou and Wenzhou in addition to its existing centres in Shenzhen and Guangzhou.

As at June 30, Henderson had a land bank in Hong Kong comprising a total attributable gross floor area of about 21.2 million square feet.

Sales in major cities on the mainland were negatively affected by housing policies pursued by the government in the first half of the year, with the surge in home prices losing momentum, Henderson said. But prices and sales in some second- or third-tier cities continued their uptrend, and its developments at Riverside Park in Suzhou, and La Botanica in Xian, generated good responses when they were sold in early 2011.

The company said it sold and pre-sold an attributable HK$903 million worth of mainland properties during the period, an increase of 70 per cent over the same period last year.

As of June 30, the developer had a mainland development land bank of about 152.6 million sq ft in attributable developable gross floor area of which, around 82 per cent was earmarked for residential developments for sale.