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KUALA LUMPUR (June 15): Based on corporate announcements and news flow today, stocks in focus on Tuesday (June 15) may include: AirAsia Group Bhd, UMW Holdings Bhd, Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd, Berjaya Corp Bhd (BCorp), Chemical Company of Malaysia Bhd (CCM), Pos Malaysia Bhd, Majuperak Holdings Bhd, Barakah Offshore Petroleum Bhd, Mah Sing Group Bhd and DRB-Hicom Bhd.

AirAsia Group Bhd will restart all domestic routes from July after the government eased movement curbs for containing the coronavirus. The budget carrier said it will run flights over its entire domestic network and at full seat capacity, according to government guidelines, though frequency would depend on demand.

AirAsia has also launced an agriculture e-commerce platform called OurFarm, aimed at connecting local farmers directly to businesses, besides serving as the main source of fresh produce for AirAsia's in-flight food outfit, Santan.

UMW Holdings Bhd posted a lower net profit of RM44.32 million for 1QFY20, down 48.76% to RM44.32 million from RM86.5 million a year earlier, as the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic weighed on its automotive and equipment segments. Quarterly revenue dropped 23.77% to RM2.12 billion from RM2.8 billion previously. UMW said its auto segment saw revenue fall 26.7% to RM1.59 billion from RM2.16 billion on the back of slower vehicle sales. Sluggish demand for heavy equipment and industrial equipment also pushed the segment’s revenue lower to RM289.15 million from RM382.84 million previously.

Carlsberg Brewery Malaysia Bhd has been told to pay RM6.36 million to the Customs Department as a full and final settlement on its bill of demand for sales tax and excise duty. The group said the financial impact of the settlement represents 2.2% and 4.1% of the group's net earnings and net assets, respectively, for the year ended Dec 31, 2019.

Berjaya Corp Bhd (BCorp) posted a net profit of RM412.52 million for 3QFY20 ended March 31, on revenue of RM1.98 billion, helped by a one-off gain from the sale of its stake in the Four Seasons Hotel & Hotel Residences Kyoto in Japan. While no comparative figures were provided following its change of financial year end to June 30 from April 30, the group said it registered lower revenue and lower gross contributions following the pandemic-driven lockdowns worldwide, which were insufficient to offset fixed operating costs.

For the cumulative nine months, BCorp booked a net profit of RM223.87 million on a revenue of RM6.13 billion. On prospects, the group said its number forecast operations are allowed to operate from today onwards. As such, it is cautiously optimistic that its gaming business will recover given that the NFO industry has been fairly resilient in past economic crises.

Chemical Company of Malaysia Bhd (CCM) sees rising demand for some chemical products amid the Covid-19 pandemic but the group cautions that it continues to face margin compression as prices of its core contributor, caustic soda, remain weak. Some 40% of CCM’s business involves caustic soda — a highly versatile substance used in a variety of manufacturing processes — which prices have been impacted by the global economic slowdown. To cushion the impact, CCM said it is expanding caustic soda production to cater to the high demand for the products in the country.

Pos Malaysia Bhd posted a lower net loss of RM49.2 million for 1QFY20 ended March 31, down by more than half from the RM141.13 million it achieved in the corresponding three months a year ago. Quarterly revenue came in at RM558.53 million, down 6.1% from RM594.68 million previously.

During the loss-making quarter — its seventh consecutive quarter in the red — Pos Malaysia has noticeably reduced its cost of sales and operating expense to RM573.74 million, from RM650.12 million in the previous immediate quarter ended Dec 31, 2019 and RM676.23 million in the three months ended March 31, 2019. However its three core operations — postal, logistics and aviation — remained in the red at the pre-tax level. On prospects, the group said it is banking on e-commerce to be a growth segment.

Majuperak Holdings Bhd said it is set to undertake solid waste management and public cleansing services in Perak jointly with another firm, Mainiza Teknitek Recowaste Sdn Bhd (MTR). According to the group, the Perak government has agreed to appoint MTR in collaboration with Majuperak’s wholly-owned unit Majuperak Utilities Management Sdn Bhd (MUM) as the concession company for the project.

The joint-venture (JV) agreement presents the opportunity for Majuperak to venture into waste management services. With MTR in the JV, Majuperak has the potential to acquire full privatisation of the waste management concession in Perak.

Troubled oil and gas (O&G) outfit Barakah Offshore Petroleum Bhd swung to a net profit of RM17.53 million for 3QFY20 ended March 31, from a net loss of RM41.93 million for the same period the year before, as lower costs more than offset lower revenue incurred. The better performance was despite quarterly revenue declining 52.98% to RM23.71 million from RM50.43 million previously — as revenue more than halved for both the pipeline and commissioning services segment, and the installation and construction services.

M Luna’s Phase 1A by Mah Sing Group Bhd has hit a take-up rate of 90% since its launch on Saturday and yesterday. Due to the good response to Phase 1A, the developer opened Phase 1B for sale with early bird privileges. Phase 2 will be launched at a later date.  Mah Sing said the launch of M Luna was timely and the encouraging take-up of Phase 1A of M Luna was a testament to strong demand for properties at the right locations.

Occupying a 5.47-acre leasehold parcel next to the Kepong Metropolitan Park in Kuala Lumpur, M Luna has a gross development value of RM705 million. The serviced apartment project comprises two 57-storey towers, offering 1,672 serviced apartments in total. Phase 1B and 1A have 200 units each.

DRB-Hicom Bhd’s 50.1%-owned Proton Holdings Bhd will reduce its car prices by 1.2% to 5.7% from today. Proton said these prices will be effective for the duration of the incentive period of six months from June 15, as announced by the government as a measure designed to boost the economy as the country emerges from its Covid-19-induced lockdown.

With its industry-leading number of 3S/4S outlets, refreshed model range, periodic improvements the carmaker has introduced, as well as the new prices, Proton said its customers will receive even better value for their money.

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