MAHB to raise RM2.5 billion by June

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Thursday February 25, 2010

Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) expects to raise about RM2.5bil by June to build its new low-cost carrier terminal (LCCT) and for local and overseas expansion. The new LCCT is expected to be completed in 2011.

Chief financial officer Faizal Mansor said the company would look at various options from equity, debts or even new shares issuance to raise the funds.

“We need at least RM2bil for the new LCCT and we also need funds to expand our operations,” he said at a media briefing yesterday after announcing MAHB’s fourth quarter results.

In its fourth quarter ended Dec 31, MAHB posted a net profit of RM140.6mil compared with RM63.2mil in the previous corresponding period.

For the year to Dec 31 (FY09), MAHB registered RM379.2mil in net proft compared with RM298.9mil previously. The airport operator currently has RM250mil cash reserve.

Faizal said the improvement in bottomline was mainly driven by higher contribution from retail and rental activities, while airport operations and stronger cargo and passenger activities also helped bolster earnings.

“We see good potential to improve our earnings from rental and retail operations locally and abroad,” he said, adding that over time MAHB expected earnings from such activities to surpass its traditional operating activities as an airport operator.

“If each of the 50 million airline passengers that grace our various terminals were to spend just RM1 at the retail shops at our terminals, MAHB would earn an additional RM50mil,” he noted.

Faizal said the aviation industry, especially in Asia, was currently facing tremendous growth opportunties, especially with the full liberalisation of the industry by 2015 under the Open Sky policy.

He said MAHB’s total airport operations segment saw a 17% revenue growth to RM1.5bil last year, largely due to a 21.2% improvement in aeronautical revenue.

Faizal said non-aeronautical revenue rose by 12.6%to RM705.8mil, underpinned by higher rental derived from additional commercial space and increased spending per passenger.

“However, non-airport operations saw an overall decline of 9.82% in revenue or RM15.3mil to RM140.5mil due to lower hotel revenue from reduced occupancy,” he said.

Faizal said retail space had been increased by 50% under its retail optimisation programme (ROP) and the new outlets, brands and improved offerings were well-received by passengers.

“MAHB’s own retail business grew by 15.3% to RM351.6mil, mainly due to higher retail and food and beverage income as a result of the increase in passenger volume,” he said.

Revenue from rental, advertising and commercials rose by 10.1% to RM354.2mil, contributed by increased rental and royalties from greater availability of commercial space as a result of the ROP initiatives and appointment of new operators at the Penang, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Miri, Terengganu and Langkawi airports.

“We expect MAHB’s non-aeronautical revenue from commercial activities will improve significantly as the company experiences its first full-year contribution from ROP starting FY10,” he noted.



This article is a verbatim copy of the original article from The Star.