TWO listed companies led by businessman Edgar “Injap” J. Sia II posted mixed results in the first quarter, but both were insulated from the negative impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
MerryMart Consumer Corp. recorded a 51% income growth due to the surge in demand for basic needs, while DoubleDragon Properties Corp. saw a 42% earnings drop after a one-off fair value gain in 2019.
In a statement to the exchange, MerryMart said its attributable net income rose to P8.35 million from P5.55 million last year. Consolidated revenues grew 40% to P794.91 million, accounting for seven operational branches during the three-month period.
The company opened four new stores in the first quarter: MerryMart Grocery in Calamba, MerryMart Store in Ayala Malls Manila Bay, MerryMart Grocery in Mayombo and MerryMart Grocery in Sorsogon.
It said it remains bullish for the rest of the year with a plan to open 18 more branches in strategic areas across the country. It is also targeting to launch an in-house online delivery platform by the third quarter to make over 3,000 MerryMart products available for delivery.
“[The pandemic] has made the MerryMart team realize the benefit of being light and nimble… Being a new player in the industry, it will not have to face the major issue of reconfiguring a big complex structure… [because it] has the flexibility to mold its expansion masterplan according to the new normal,” Mr. Sia said.
Shares in MerryMart at the stock exchange shed 14 centavos or 4% to P3.36 each on Wednesday.
On the other hand, DoubleDragon posted an attributable net income of P536.69 million in the first quarter, down from P919.41 million in the same period last year.
But it said the decline was due to one-off fair value gains last year from the completion of DoubleDragon Center East. Core net income, which excludes unrealized fair value gains, jumped 133% to P427.94 million with the sustained growth across its business segments.
Recurring revenues rose 21% to P927.91 million after a 24% increase in rent income to P774.97 million, a 16% improvement in real estate sales to P208.14 million and a 7% uptick in hotel revenues to P152.94 million.
This growth pushed recurring revenues to account for 48.46% of DoubleDragon’s consolidated revenues during the period, up from last year’s 28.93%, and moved it closer to its target of sourcing 90% of its topline from recurring revenues.
Consolidated revenues for the period fell 28% to P1.91 billion due to unrealized gains.
“DoubleDragon’s strong asset base, even without [fair value] gains, is already yielding a substantial amount of core revenues which are primarily recurring in nature,” DoubleDragon Chief Investment Officer Hannah Yulo-Luccini said in the statement.
She said this business format makes DoubleDragon poised to withstand economic challenges emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic, as it doesn’t rely on real estate sales, which she said are “more sensitive to economic downturns.”
DoubleDragon also maintains a plan to raise capital through a real estate investment trust offering in the fourth quarter, which Ms. Yulo said would “catapult the company’s consolidated equity to exceed the P50 billion ($1 billion) mark.”
The company is targeting to raise its leasable portfolio to 1.2 million square meters by 2022 across provincial retail leasing, office leasing, industrial leasing and hotels.
Shares in DoubleDragon at the stock exchange dipped four centavos or 0.23% to P17.08 each on Wednesday. — Denise A. Valdez