Parkview sinks into the red

HONG Kong Parkview Group slumped into a loss of $19.71 million for the year ended March 31 after making a profit of $6.34 million in the previous year.

The loss per share was 9.04 cents compared with earnings of 4.23 cents previously. No final dividend was declared.

Turnover leapt sixfold to $218.6 million from $35.22 million.

The group, formerly called Ming Ren Holdings Co, said a significant restructuring of the company and operating losses at the Coral Princess cruise liner were behind the losses.

Under the reorganisation, four core divisions were created in property, transport, hospitality and petrochemicals.

The company owns three towers at the luxury residential complex Hong Kong Parkview, which were bought in the year for $1.24 billion, taking company assets to $1.8 billion.

The Coral Princess, bought in 1990, has a new two-year service charter in Malaysia.

The operating loss of the group was $16.19 million, compared with a profit of $6.34 million in the previous year. There was an associate company loss of $654,979. A tax credit of $2.86 million was recorded.

On Friday the company's shares closed at $4.125. The average price of the share for the last 12 months was $2.638. In the last two weeks the stock has seen a major change in volume and value.

After an extended period of less than 10 million shares traded in a day the stock saw more than 100 million traded in the last seven trading days.

The share price has risen from $2.625 to $4.125, a rise of 57 per cent.

Chairman and managing director George Wong Kin-wah said: ''The group remains positive on the long-term prospects based on the continued growth in its divisions and its growing relationship with its joint-venture partners.

''On current indications the group expects positive results in the forthcoming year.''