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VITROX (0097) VITROX CORP BHD is The Edge BRC’s Company of the Year

KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 13): ViTrox Corp Bhd took home the coveted The Edge Billion Ringgit Club (BRC) Company of the Year award, while Malayan Banking Bhd president and CEO Datuk Abdul Farid Alias was named this year’s Outstanding CEO & Value Creator on Monday (Dec 13).

Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz graced the gala dinner and awards ceremony, which was postponed last year for the first time since its inception in 2010 as the country battled the Covid-19 pandemic, but returned this year with the necessary health-related protocols in place. A total of 55 corporate awards were given out to 43 companies.

“After not having a Gala dinner last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we are glad to have one tonight to celebrate the success and resilience of corporate Malaysia.

“Our objective (of organizing the Billion Ringgit Club) is to encourage Malaysian companies to be more successful and competitive, to grow, to invest, to create jobs and at the same time to be socially responsible,” said The Edge Media Group chairman Tan Sri Tong Kooi Ong in his welcoming speech.

Zafrul said the prestigious corporate award not only recognises profits and shareholders’ return, but also acknowledges corporate responsibility initiatives that contribute to strong sustainable performance.

“The government recognises that big corporates have been diligently paying taxes, investing or reinvesting and contributing to Malaysia’s economic development on top of hiring, training, nurturing and keeping Malaysia’s talent," Zafrul said in his keynote address.

While giving the assurance that 'Cukai Makmur' is a one-off corporate tax on profits above RM100 million for assessment year 2022, he also promised that the MOF will disclose how taxes collected from the additional step up to 30% for just one year goes to aid the people and the economy.

"I strongly believe that all of us sitting here are truly privileged to further share the collective responsibility of ensuring that the nation recovers quickly, including in helping the nation to procure booster shots for 140% of our population. This is to ensure that our socio-economic growth and development can be back on track as outlined in our 12th Malaysia Plan," Zafrul added.

Meanwhile, Vitrox president and CEO Chu Jenn Weng dedicated the award his company won to those who had worked tirelessly for it since its inception in 2000. “This is just the beginning, this award will serve as motivation for us in reaching our goal of becoming the world’s most trusted technology company,” he said.

Separately, Maybank CEO Datuk Abdul Farid Alias said he is deeply humbled by the recognition. “It is a recognition of the combined effort of all Maybank-ers who have consistently worked in creating values within and throughout the organisation,” he said.

There were 186 The Edge BRC members this year – a new all-time high – beating the previous record of 185 members in 2011. There were 161 BRC members last year.

The members this year command a market capitalisation of RM1.59 trillion or 90% of the combined market cap of all Bursa Malaysia-listed companies as at March 31, 2021. In contrast, last year’s 161 BRC members’ combined market capitalisation was RM1.41 trillion – the lowest since 2013’s RM1.32 trillion.

Meanwhile, the combined net profit of this year’s BRC members fell to a multiple-year low of only RM46 billion, largely due to sizeable losses booked by a number of larger members that were hit more severely by the pandemic.

Even so, BRC members continued to be major taxpayers, paying an estimated RM23 billion in taxes for FY2020, below the RM28 billion they paid in FY2019, but still sizeable relative to the RM50 billion corporate tax collection for 2020.

In its 12th installment this year, the awards honouring Corporate Malaysia’s best-performing and top responsible organisations aim to spur Malaysian companies to be even better at what they do – not just financially but also as a corporate citizen.

Bursa Malaysia-listed companies with at least RM1 billion market capitalisation as at March 31 each year are automatically added to the annual The Edge BRC membership list and are evaluated on profit growth, returns to shareholders and corporate responsibility (CR) commitments, among others. The billion-ringgit cut-off serves as an aspirational target for smaller, dynamic companies. Results are audited by Deloitte Malaysia.

OCBC Bank Malaysia, a key partner since the award’s inauguration in 2010, is the main sponsor for the 12th year this year. Also returning as a sponsor – for the 7th year now – is Mercedes-Benz Malaysia, the awards’ official car. Cartier by Cortina Watch Malaysia, which supported the awards last year, came on board as supporting sponsor this year.

“I thank OCBC and Mercedes-Benz for their steadfast support of the BRC and welcome Cartier by Cortina. This prestigious gathering would not continue being Corporate Malaysia’s most anticipated corporate awards ceremony and gala dinner without these distinguished partners,” said Datuk Ho Kay Tat, The Edge Media Group publisher and CEO.

Congratulating this year’s winners, OCBC Bank Malaysia CEO Datuk Ong Eng Bin commended how they had “demonstrated that despite the difficult situation and gloomy outlook, there remain opportunities to do well”.

“[The winners] demonstrated that the old adage still holds true, that good companies do well by doing good and [they] perform well all the time. They have shown that sustainability can be a key driver to growth, especially under the current environment where ESG (environmental, social and governance) factors are becoming increasingly important,” Ong said.

Last year, Hartalega Holdings Bhd was named Company of the Year. Past winners include Press Metal Aluminium Holdings Bhd, Petronas Dagangan Bhd, AirAsia Bhd, Nestlé (M) Bhd, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, Dutch Lady Milk Industries Bhd, DiGi.Com Bhd, Genting Bhd, QL Resources Bhd and Supermax Corp Bhd.

The Value Creator: Malaysia’s Outstanding CEO award was not given out last year, as was the case in 2011 and 2015.

The award’s previous winners are Public Bank Group chairman Tan Sri Teh Hong Piow, former CIMB group chairman Datuk Seri Nazir Razak, AMMB Holdings Bhd chairman Tan Sri Azman Hashim, AirAsia group CEO Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, former S P Setia Bhd president and CEO Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin, former Malayan Banking Bhd president and CEO Tan Sri Abdul Wahid Omar, former Axiata Group Bhd president and group CEO Tan Sri Jamaludin Ibrahim, Sunway Group chairman Tan Sri Jeffrey Cheah, former Khazanah Nasional Bhd managing director Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar, Westports Holdings Bhd executive chairman Tan Sri G Gnanalingam, Dialog Group Bhd executive chairman and co-founder Tan Sri Ngau Boon Keat and QL Resources Bhd executive chairman Tan Sri Chia Song Kun.

Details on The Edge BRC members and award winners will be published in a special supplement in the Dec 27 issue of The Edge Malaysia weekly.


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