The leading blue-chip conglomerate, Aitken Spence PLC reported its best ever third quarter (Q3) performance with a Profit-Before-Tax (PBT) of Rs. 3 Bn in Q3 2021-22, a significant turnaround from the third quarter Q3 of the previous year.
The Group’s businesses including the tourism sector is showing positive momentum. Across all sectors, the Group’s earnings before interest expense, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) was Rs. 5.2 Bn compared to Rs. 1.2 Bn in Q3 of the previous year.
The Group also recorded an EBITDA of Rs. 9.8 Bn for the nine months ended 31st December 2021. Despite considerable economic headwinds, the organisation’s agile strategy was reflected in the Group’s overseas businesses that contributed 78% to the overall PBT in Q3 and 64% in the nine months ended 31st December 2021.
The Group’s tourism sector came through with an exceptional turnaround in performance during the third quarter by recording a PBT of Rs. 1.6 Bn compared to a loss of Rs. 1.8 Bn in the Q3 of the previous year. The Group’s hotels were in full operation with a noteworthy contribution from the overseas hotels and an encouraging recovery from the local hotels together with the commencement of charter operations from the Eastern European market facilitated by the Group’s destination management segment. Aitken Spence Travels recently facilitated the first charter operation from Uzbekistan, another new source market for Sri Lanka.
During the third quarter the Group’s maritime and freight logistics sector yet again recorded a strong PBT of Rs. 1.1 Bn mainly from the freight management and liner shipping segments together with increased overseas port management operations. The Group’s strategic investments sector recorded a PBT of Rs. 181 Mn and the Group’s services sector recorded a PBT of Rs. 91 Mn. The waste-to-energy power plant and the three hydro power plants that were acquired last year, and the improved performances seen in the printing and apparel segments substantially contributed towards profits of the sector.
The Group recorded an impressive PBT of Rs. 3.3 Bn for the nine months ended 31st December 2021, which is a noteworthy turnaround from the loss recorded in the previous year. The results are significant in comparison to the PBT of Rs. 2.4 Bn that was recorded during the comparative period of the pre-pandemic financial year 2019-2020.
“Our performance this quarter is a reflection of the Group’s resilience and perseverance that propelled us amidst the most unprecedented challenges we have ever faced as a company. It’s rewarding to see a strong performance across all sectors of the Group, particularly for the tourism sector that showed remarkable turnaround. It was nothing short of an uphill battle and I must commend each and every Spensonian and our management teams and I thank all our partners in business for supporting our efforts. We continued to invest and prioritised the wellbeing of our employees and key stakeholders in the management decisions we made and it’s encouraging to see these results.”