02 August 2006

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Business Today

Tumas Group’s finance arms register strong results

The Tumas Group has three bonds listed on the Malta Stock Exchange aimed at providing the financing for the various projects undertaken by the Group.
The first bond worth Lm4.2 million at 6.7% interest are secured and up for redemption this year. The funds for these bonds were collected through private placement. There is also another 6.7% bond of which Lm7 million were issued and are due for redemption between 2010/12. These funds were taken by the general public. A third bond is worth Lm7 million at 6% interest secured and issued by Dolmen Properties plc.
Tumas Investments is used for financing projects of the Tumas Group and the guarantor company is Spinola Development Co. Ltd that owns the Portomaso project. Its security is a number of floors of the Portomaso business tower.
Dolmen properties plc used the funds from the bond for upgrading the Dolmen Complex as well as to refinance bank loans. In 2004, this company pledged to build a bond redemption fund utilising 66% of available free cash flow. This is a very prudent policy in the interest of bond investors.
Looking at the financials of Tumas Investments plc, the investment arm, one finds that the interest receivable from another member of the Tumas Group is Lm815,000 out of which the interest payable is Lm771,000. The profit after deducting the administrative and tax charge is Lm12,000 registering an earnings per share for 2005 at 11c3 as against the 10c3 registered in 2004. The balance sheet is stable with Lm7 million in fixed assets and the current assets include the Lm4.2 million it invested in a related party that need to be called up to redeem the Lm4.5 million bond that will expire just before year’s end. While it loaned the bonds from the public at 6.7%, it used the funds to loan to the other group members at 6.8%.
The second company that is part of the Tumas Group is Dolmen properties, which is the owner of the Dolmen Complex at Qawra. 2005, was a full year of operation as in the previous year it closed down for some time for refurbishment. The results are very encouraging as turnover reached Lm3.9 million being a 21% increase over the previous year and gross profit was just under one million Malta lira and a healthy margin of 25%. Operating profit was just over half a million Malta lira and the profit after tax was just under Lm200,000, leaving an earnings per share of 2c8 against a loss registered in the previous year of 4mils. The fixed assets exceed Lm16.4 million and the cash balance was Lm619,000 while debtors stood at Lm913,000.
The balance sheet of the company is strong and it registered an improved cash flow position. The major expense item for the operation are the administrative and sales at Lm3.4 million of which 285 staff members bring the payroll costs to Lm1.5 million. The interest on the coupons is only Lm282,000.
The Group has also published the financial results of the guarantor company Spinola Development Co Ltd, the owner of the Portomaso complex. The accounts are important since one of the bonds at Tumas Investments is redeemable this year. Spinola Development reached a turnover of Lm16.8million. The gross profit margin reached Lm5.27 million, which is also an improvement by 9.3% over the 2004 figure. The operating profit reached Lm3.43 million and the earnings per share in 2005 was 37c, up from 34c the previous year. The Balance sheet is strong with Lm33.7 million of fixed assets, cash balance at Lm3.4 million which is an improvement on the previous year. The total assets topped Lm42.3 million.
From the segmental accounts of Spinola Development Co Ltd we see that turnover from the hotel industry reached Lm7.9million, property generated Lm7.7 million while the other operations rentals and complex management raised Lm486,000 and Lm665,000.
Staff costs reached Lm2.8 million for 441 employees.
The Tumas Group is well known locally as a major property development company, with interests in hospitality, hotels, complex management, retail of vehicles as well as investors in a joint venture partnership in a DTTV operator and the latest incursion into shipping as part owner of a company that manages cargo handling operations at Valletta port.
It is also one of the major employers in Malta with an active corporate responsibility programme that includes the Tumas Foundation.
Its diversification policy is termed cautious but the owners’ concentration on the core business is bearing results.

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