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Massy Stores, Gulf City.

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Massy Holdings Ltd’s profit after tax (PAT) has fallen from $286.8 million to $262.7 million or by 8.4 per cent for the six-month period ended March 31.

In its half-year financial statements, Massy chairman Robert Bermudez expressed that the company has still been fortunate during the pandemic.

He observed, “Our recent focus on strengthening the governance in the portfolios and giving greater autonomy and decision making to leaders throughout the ranks of all our businesses has allowed the Group to respond to the crisis with great agility.”

Nevertheless, Massy’s half-year (HY) profit before tax (PBT) declined by 12 per cent or $56.1 million from $448.2 million in 2019 to $392.1 million in 2020. Bermudez said this decline in PBT is fully explained by some extraordinary events.

He said that the transfer and pending sale of Seawell Air Services incurred a $24 million loss arising from severance costs and an impairment on the value of the assets transferred.

Bermudez also noted that the US Stock Market share prices plummeted in second quarter amidst the fears and economic slowdown created by the COVID-19 pandemic and adversely impacted the investment income earned by the Massy United Insurance Ltd and TIRCL (captive reinsurance) investment portfolios.

He said that this combined market-to-market loss in value incurred was $34.9 million; and without these two impacts, the group’s PBT would have increased by $2.8 million or 0.6 per cent.

In spite of this, Massy chairman said that the COVID-19 crisis has created energy and prospects for the company.

“This crisis has unleashed innovation and creative strategies for growth. New services such as online ordering, curb-side pickup and delivery to homes have been launched in record time.”

Bermudez added that remote working and digital technologies have become commonplace and employee engagement has also been enhanced with increased communication and constant engagement of staff.

The chairman also highlighted that three main portfolios performed commendably for the first half of FY 2020. Integrated retail third party revenue grew by eight per cent and its PBT grew by nine per cent.

Motors and machines third party revenue grew by seven per cent, despite losing a week or more in sales in March in T&T and Colombia.

While gas products third party revenue declined by six per cent, with loss of volumes from hotels and restaurants due to COVID-19 restrictions, its PBT increased by 14 per cent, driven by increased demands for packed LPG, oxygen and nitrogen, partly driven by changes in consumer behaviour and increased healthcare expenditure in response to COVID-19.

However, in these uncertain times, Bermudez said that it is not possible to predict how the full year will turn out but the group can face the uncertainties with confidence in its ability to adapt as necessary.