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Mulpha International Bhd hopes to stay profitable after turning a profit of RM419.38 million in the third quarter (Q3) ended September 30, 2021, compared to a loss of RM25.39 million in the same quarter last year.

The profit level in the period under review was due to an RM420.9 million one-time gain on the sale of Education Perfect, an associate company in New Zealand.

According to a stock exchange filing today, revenue increased by one per cent to RM141.19 million, driven by the hospitality division, which partially offset lower gains earned in the property development, property investment, and other divisions.

With the one-time sale of a pad site at Lexington Drive in the previous year’s corresponding quarter and fewer settlements in Mulpha Norwest, the property division recorded marginally lower revenue of RM2.6 million.

Mulpha expects its property division to perform better in the future as the Sydney real estate market remains positive. However, due to lockdown restrictions, sales volumes were lower in the third quarter.

According to the company, the Mulgoa Rise land project and the Haven apartment project in Sydney are sold out, leaving only a tiny amount of available stock.

The Essentia townhouse project has also seen strong sales, with the final stage set to open in the fourth quarter of 2021, it stated.

Mulpha stated that solid sales momentum at Sanctuary Cove has continued into the third quarter, particularly in land sales to domestic buyers.

“We anticipate sales will strengthen further with the planned border reopening in December 2021. The Sanctuary Cove first waterfront apartment building, Harbour One, consisting of 47 apartments has been released to the market with strong initial interest from local residents,” the company said.

According to Mulpha, a development application for the first two apartment towers in the Greens precinct, now known as Norwest Quarter, has been submitted. An initial sales campaign is currently underway.

The company stated that construction on this project would begin in the first quarter of 2022.

The Bond, a six-story commercial office and medical building adjacent to the Norwest Private Hospital, are also under construction, it said.

Meanwhile, Mulpha announced that Swing City, the company’s planned Golf Entertainment facility at Norwest, has received all development approvals and that construction has begun, with an expected opening date of mid-2022.

It also stated that the construction of 60 boutique cabins at the Palmers Land vineyard site in the Hunter Valley has begun to complement its successful wedding venue.

According to the company on its Leisure Farm project in Iskandar Malaysia, Johor, it is experiencing lower sales volumes and increased competition.

Due to significant oversupply in the Johor region, the company expects harsh market conditions to last for several years.

Meanwhile, revenue from other businesses, including the investment division, fell by RM6.92 million due to a lower volume of debt finance deals in the current quarter and a decrease in international students due to border closures affecting the education sector.

Mulpha is a well-known property, hotel, and leisure asset owner and manager, including the InterContinental Hayman Island, InterContinental Sanctuary Cove, and InterContinental Sydney.

Occupancies at both the InterContinental Hayman Island and the InterContinental Sanctuary Cove dropped significantly due to booking cancellations caused by the ongoing pandemic, according to the filing.

It closed the InterContinental Sydney to focus on renovations, including a complete overhaul of all rooms, restaurants, bars, and public areas.

According to the filing, the full reopening of InterContinental Sydney is expected in the second quarter of 2022.

“We believe this timing will coincide with a return to more normalised demand from both domestic and international travellers,” the company said.

Mulpha anticipates more robust results, including a complete relaxation of restrictions in Australia’s southern states and the reopening of borders by the end of the year.

“Australia has performed well in terms of vaccination rates, with the country expected to reach more than 90 per cent double vaccination rates by the end of the year. As a result, we anticipate stronger demand in the majority of our industry sectors beginning in 2022,” it said.

Source: NewStraitsTimes, Kathy B./November 29, 2021

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