SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) – Sembcorp Industries on Friday (Aug 5) saw a surge in net profit to $490 million for the first half-year ended June 30, from $46 million a year ago, buoyed by higher electricity prices at home and in India.

Before exceptional items, net profit surged 94 per cent year on year to $252 million. The exceptional items include gains on disposal of investments and an asset held for sale, as well as write-back of assets.

Sembcorp’s conventional energy business, which made up 86 per cent of total revenue last year, posted a net profit before exceptional items of $397 million, 115 per cent higher than a year ago, further aided by realised gains from favourable gas hedges entered in 2021 in Singapore.

The company’s earnings per share jumped to 27.48 cents from 2.58 cents previously, while first-half turnover rose 45 per cent to $4.76 billion from $3.29 billion.

The group also doubled its interim dividend to four cents per ordinary share from two cents last year in view of its “strong underlying performance”.

The dividends will be paid out on Aug 23 after books closure on Aug 17.

Sembcorp said its full-year results are expected to be significantly higher than those for 2021.

It expects performance for its conventional energy business to remain strong in the second half of the year if market conditions seen in the first half remain.

Its renewables business is also expected to be underpinned by a half-year contribution from the China renewables portfolio acquired in the first half of 2022. 

“We remain focused on the execution of our brown to green transformation strategy to deliver lasting value and growth to our stakeholders,” said Mr Wong Kim Yin, group president and chief executive officer of Sembcorp.

Sembcorp shares jumped nine cents, or 3 per cent, to $3.10 as at 9.04am on Friday, after its results announcement.

• With additional information from The Straits Times