HENDERSON Land Development, the listed property flagship of tycoon Lee Shau-kee, has registered a 47.3 per cent rise in profit to $2.04 billion for the six months ended December 31. The strong earnings growth was largely due to a 273 per cent increase in contribution from associated companies, mainly Hongkong and China Gas, to $653.67 million from $175 million previously. Hongkong and China Gas, 31.6 per cent owned by Henderson Land, had reported a 20 per cent rise in profit to $936 million in 1992, although another associate, Hongkong Ferry (Holdings), saw a 34 per cent earnings fall to $88 million. Henderson Land also saw increased development profit with the completion of nine projects in the first half of the financial year. Its operating profit was $1.82 billion, up 13.9 per cent over $1.6 billion for the same period in 1991. The group said rental income from investment properties also showed a moderate increase. For the six months under review, Henderson Land's turnover jumped 28.5 per cent to $3.21 billion from $2.5 billion. Earnings per share increased 47 per cent to $1.28 from 87 cents. It will pay an interim dividend of 23 cents per share. However, Henderson Investment reported a profit rise of only six per cent to $428.12 million for the same period. Earnings per share rose slightly to 18.8 cents from 17.9 cents. An interim dividend of 7.5 cents per share was recommended. In an overall review, Henderson Land said it had acquired five development sites during the first half-year, which could provide 1.7 million sq ft of floor area. Early this year, the group also acquired three development sites through public tenders of land exchange entitlements, including a large piece of land in Tseung Kwan O with a potential floor area of 2.8 million sq ft. The total development land bank of the group in Hongkong is presently about 17 million sq ft in gross floor area after inclusion of its land exchange entitlement holdings.