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| FRIDAY MAY 22 2009


Maybank’s Q3 pre-tax profit eases to RM653.9mil
KUALA LUMPUR: Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) posted lower pre-tax profit of RM2.5 billion for the nine months ended March 31, 2009 from RM3.07 billion recorded in the same period last year. However, its revenue increased to RM12.7 billion from RM11.7 billion previously. In a statement here yesterday, Maybank said the lower profit for the nine months was primarily due to lower operating performance by the investment banking group. For the third quarter ended March 31, 2009, Maybank posted lower pre-tax profit of RM653.9 million from RM1.0 billion in the same quarter last year. Its revenue, however, increased to RM4.3 billion from RM3.7 billion previously. Maybank said its net income for the nine months rose 8.7% to RM7.22 billion from RM6.65 billion previously underpinned by growth in revenue across almost all business segments including Islamic banking (+31.2%), corporate banking (+28.9%), investment banking and treasury (+28.7%), consumer banking (+3.9%), insurance (+5.1%) and international operations (+51.9%). For the group’s Malaysian operation, the bank said annualised loans growth for the period stood at 8%. Overall consumer loans grew by 6.5% led by increases in credit card receivables, automobile financing, securities and mortgages. Maybank said the group’s international operations saw robust growth of 26.8% and 28.7% respectively in income and operating profit. The group registered further improvement in asset quality with net non-performing loan (NPL) ratio at 1.73% as at end March this year compared with 1.92% in June last year. Loan loss coverage rose further to 101.5% compared with 99.2% in June last year. The group’s risk weighted capital ratio stood at 12.10% as at March 2009. However, following the completion of the right issue on April 30, 2009, the risk weighted capital ratio for the group stood at 14.76% at the end of April this year. “We are seeing lower profit performance impacted largely by higher provisioning for our international operations given the tougher operating environment and impairment costs resulting from our recent regional acquisitions,” Maybank president and chief executive officer Datuk Seri Abdul Wahid Omar said. “Moving ahead, our focus will be on capturing value from these acquisitions and strengthening the performance of our investment banking and insurance operations,” he said. – Bernama

PIDM expects higher revenue for FY09
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Deposit Insurance Corp (PIDM) expects its revenue to increase to RM158 million for fiscal year ending Dec 31, 2009 from RM98.56 million last year. Its chief executive officer Jean Pierre Sabourin said the projection was based on the country’s financial system that was still robust and a declining trend in non-performing loans. “Of the total revenue, some RM147 million will be premium income collection while RM11 million will be in investment income,” he told a media briefing in conjunction with the release of PIDM’s 2008 annual report yesterday. The premium income projection is based on the differential premium system rate structure, while the investment income is based on an average yield of 3.5% return on investment. Sabourin said the higher collection in premium income this year from last year’s RM90 million would be driven by the full implementation of the differential premium systems for financial institutions. The tiered premium rates range from 0.03% of the total insurable deposit for category one financial institution to the maximum of 0.24% for those in category four. Last year, PIDM’s operating expenditure totalled RM34.5 million resulting in a surplus of RM64 million. It invested its surplus funds in highlyliquid government securities. He said PIDM’s conventional and Islamic deposit insurance funds now stood at RM243 million and RM32.3 million respectively. “Since our establishment in 2005, we have been focusing on building the necessary foundations to enable us to meet our mandate of providing deposit insurance protection and contributing to financial stability,” he said. For 2009, Sabourin said, PIDM would focus on intensifying its risk assessment and monitoring, developing its capacity to handle intervention and failure resolutions, expanding communication efforts to promote public confidence in the financial system and developing its human capital. “Public awareness and education will continue to be PIDM’s major focus as accurate public understanding of deposit insurance protection will contribute to greater confidence in the financial system,” he said. Sabourin said the level of consumer awareness of deposit insurance increased significantly to 27% in 2008 from 15% in 2007, while awareness of PIDM has also increased to 32% from just 12% in 2007. He said PIDM has allocated RM15.6 million for capital expenditures for its various initiatives including raising the level of public awareness this year. – Bernama

Celcom records growth for 12th consecutive quarter
by Jonathan Mah

Mohamed Adlan speaking at the media briefing. With him is Shazalli.

KUALA LUMPUR: Celcom Malaysia Berhad wrapped up the first quarter of this year on a positive note, recording positive growth in revenue and profit after tax and minority interest (PATAMI), while sustaining the earnings before tax, interest, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) margin at 45%. This marks the 12th consecutive quarter in which Celcom experiences positive revenue growth, with a 9.7% increase in revenue yearon-year (YoY) from RM1,346 million to RM1,476 million. PATAMI grew 15.2% YoY from RM310 million to RM357 million, while EBITDA grew 8.1% from RM614 million to RM664 million. At a media briefing yesterday, Celcom chief executive officer Datuk Shazalli Ramly said the first quarter was always challenging due to the seasonal slowdown and fewer operable days. Despite this, the company registered a 0.3% revenue growth in the first quarter compared with the forth quarter of last year, while most of the other telcos recorded negative growth. However, average revenue per user (ARPU) in both prepaid and postpaid areas showed signs of

No slowing down of FDI to Iskandar Malaysia, says Najib
JOHOR BARU: The government does not expect foreign direct investment (FDI) to Iskandar Malaysia to suffer as a result of the current global economic slowdown, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said yesterday. He said the government expected the bullish inflow of FDI to Malaysia’s southernmost economic corridor to continue unabated. “I don’t expect (the FDI inflow to Iskandar Malaysia to slow down). I think it is going to a prime area of development. It has attracted a lot of international interest.” The developers have not slowed down, in fact they are pursuing their development, he told reporters after officiating Kota Iskandar’s District Cooling Building yesterday. – Bernama

TM posts lower Q1 pre-tax profit of RM91.322mil
KUALA LUMPUR: Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) recorded a lower pre-tax profit of RM91.322 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 2009, compared with RM109.248 million in the corresponding quarter of last year. Its revenue, however, rose by 5% to RM2.105 billion from RN2.006 billion previously. The company attributed the growth to nonvoice products and services. Internet, data, leased and other telecommunication related services combined to contribute 50.9% of the group’s total revenue for the quarter, Bernama reports. TM also maintained its leadership position in the broadband market and continued to sustain the momentum with a strong Y-o-Y customer growth of 24.9% over the last 12 months.


decrease from the last quarter. Celcom chief corporate officer Mohamed Adlan Ahmad Tajudin attributed the decrease to a general downtrend in the telco industry, due to its competitive landscape. “In a highly saturated market, it is a fact that the ARPU will go down, since we have to compete based on price. The economic slowdown has to a certain extent contributed to this as well. We have seen that in the lower segments of our prepaid market, consumers are spending less than what they used to,” said Adlan. Shazalli said the company will remain focused on its segmented market strategy as the key strategy for the year, but added that new drivers include mobile broadband and enterprise business. According to Shazalli, Celcom is the leading mobile broadband provider nationwide, and this contributed about 4% to its revenue in Q1. It has more than 300,000 subscribers to its unlimited package, representing more than 200% YoY growth. Meanwhile, its enterprise business has also been consistently performing well in the last few quarters, with the highest number of Blackberry registrations in the country – almost doubling from half a year ago. Moving forward, Shazalli announced the new corporate structure to support high performance transformation mainly in business strategy direction, human capital and talent management as well as organisational development. “It has not been an easy journey in order to achieve the best ever financial results in the company’s history. “We are widening our gap with our nearest competitor and will continue to set a strong foundation for further growth in 2009,” he said.