Roxas Holdings earns 18% more in 9 months

By Czeriza Valencia

MANILA, Philippines — Listed sugar and ethanol producer Roxas Holdings Inc. (RHI) registered an 18 percent growth in its nine-month consolidated net income to P120 million on the back of the strong performance of its sugar business.

Consolidated revenues, however, fell to P10.9 billion from P12 billion a year ago, RHI said in a disclosure to the local bourse yesterday.

RHI said it managed to increase income despite having lower revenues through improved production volume and efficiency in plant operations.

Revenues from the firm’s sugar business declined seven percent to P7.3 billion due to the  15 percent decline in average sugar prices. Despite the reduction in revenues, gross income from the sugar business grew 38 percent to P1.16 billion.

The group’s sugar business milled 3.461 million metric tons of cane (TCM) for the period, up 26 percent. It also produced 6.497 million 50-kilogram (LKg) bags of sugar for the period, surpassing last year’s production of 5.1 million LKg.

RHI’s sugar business contributed 67 percent to consolidated revenues.

Revenues from its ethanol business slid 14 percent to P3.6 billion even as production volume was steady at 70 million liters. This was attributed to the lower average price of ethanol during the period which was linked to the price of sugar and molasses.

Despite the lower revenues, RHI said its ethanol business  reported a 28 pecent jump in gross income to P293 million.

Ethanol operations were adversely affected by delays in the early part of the year due to prolonged periods of enhancement works at the plants in the early part of the year.

RHI’s ethanol unit steered back to profitability toward the end of the period as plant repairs and expansion works ended and production capacity was raised to 82 million liters.

“We are hopeful that the expanded capacity and improved efficiency of the group’s ethanol business unit will underpin the continued growth of the business,” said RHI chairman Pedro Roxas.

The RHI group registered P1.46 billion in gross profit, up 36 percent. Consolidated earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA), meanwhile, rose 23 percent to P1.6 billion.

“Despite the challenging market conditions, the group hit the PhP1.6 billion mark we set for the EBITDA as we focused on achieving higher production volume and efficiencies,” said Celso Dimarucut, executive vice president and chief finance officer of RHI.

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