Soundwill Holdings has reported a sharp increase in first-half earnings to $183 million, mainly from revaluation gains on investment properties after the adoption of the new accounting standard.
Excluding the revaluation gain of about $200 million and provision for related deferred tax of $35 million, underlying net profit was up 12 per cent to about $17.8 million.
The company said its flagship property, Soundwill Plaza, recorded a steady occupancy rate of near 100 per cent and an increase in rental rates of about 10 per cent, compared with the same period last year.
Several lease contracts at Soundwill Plaza will be due for renewal in the second half of this year and rental rates are expected to rise 15 per cent to 20 per cent on buoyant Hong Kong tourism and retail industries and a robust property market.
The company said construction had begun on its low-density residential development projects in Yuen Long and Sai Kung that have a total site area of about 300,000 square feet and a gross floor area of nearly 200,000 sq ft.
The projects are scheduled for completion in phases between next year and 2008.
On urban redevelopment, Soundwill said the inadequate land supply in Hong Kong has prompted it to select suitable sites for redevelopment.
It said it was optimistic of acquiring assets in old districts in the coming year.
The company had also been researching business development opportunities in the mainland's urban infrastructure market, Soundwill said.
The group's net asset value per share was about $10.40 during the first half, a discount of about 77 per cent to the level on December 31 last year because of an increase in the total number of shares outstanding.
Basic earnings per share soared to $1.21 from 15 cents previously. The company did not announce any interim dividend payout.