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Unaudited Half Year Financial Statements and Dividend Announcement For the Six Months Ended 30 June 2022

Financials Archive

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Condensed Interim Consolidated Income Statement

Profit & Loss

Condensed Interim Consolidated Statement of Comprehensive Income

Statement of Comprehensive Income

Condensed Balance Sheets

Balance Sheet

* The gearing ratio is computed as borrowings divided by total capital. Total capital is calculated as borrowings plus net assets of the Group.
** The net gearing ratio is computed as borrowings less cash and bank balances divided by total capital.

Group Performance Review

(a) Half year review - 1H 2022 vs 1H 2021

In the first half-year ended 30 June 2022, (“1H 2022”), the Group’s revenue increased by 40% to S$90.5 million, from S$64.7 million reported in the first half-year ended 30 June 2021 (“1H 2021”), while profit from core business operations increased by S$8.4 million or 35% from the corresponding period a year ago, to S$32.4 million.

The higher Group revenue was mainly due to revenue contribution from (i) new Quick Build Dormitories (“QBDs”) for workers accommodation in Singapore as well as two Onboard Centres (“OCs”) that the Group manages; and (ii) existing Singapore Purpose-Built Dormitories (“PBDs”) recovered in financial occupancy rates; and (iii) existing United Kingdom ("UK") and Australia Purpose-Built Student Accommodation (“PBSA”) portfolio with financial occupancies improving and recovering from the COVID-19 disruption. The increase in revenue was however offset by cessation of operations of dwell Selegie in Singapore in June 2021.

Two of the QBDs in Singapore, Westlite Jalan Tukang and Westlite Tuas South Boulevard have commenced operations progressively since June 2021 and the two OCs that have commenced operations since March 2021 have contributed significantly to the growth in revenue in 1H 2022.

Financial occupancy for the Group’s Singapore Purpose-Built Dormitories ("PBDs") also recovered in 1H 2022 from 82% in 1H 2021 to 96% in 1H 2022, as the inflow of migrant workers from South Asia gradually resumed after the re-opening of the borders.

The Group’s student accommodation assets in the UK saw a growth in occupancy from 66% in 1H 2021 to 90% in 1H 2022, as COVID-19 restrictions on international travel and on-campus programmes were lifted during the second half of 2021 (“2H 2021”).

As Australia international borders re-opened on 15 December 2021, just before the new academic year started, average financial occupancy in Australia increased to 58% for 1H 2022 from 27% in 1H 2021, notwithstanding the fact that students had not returned in large numbers in 1H 2022 as universities were still delivering courses in a blended mode, adopting a mix of face-to-face on-campus and online study, in semester 1 for the academic year 2022.

The Group’s gross profit increased 40% from S$43.5 million in 1H 2021 to S$60.9 million in 1H 2022 in tandem with the revenue growth.

Other income reduced by S$1.1 million with the cessation of various government support schemes in respect of COVID19.

Administrative and distribution expenses increased by S$3.5 million due to business expansion as well as reinstatement of the staff and management salaries which had been reduced since 1 May 2020.

Finance expenses increased by S$0.5 million due to higher interest rate environment but were partially offset against reduced loan balances.

Share of profit of associated companies and joint venture increased by S$1.0 million, largely due to better operating performance with better occupancy rates and lower fair value loss in investment properties compared to 1H 2021.

Net change in fair value of investment properties in 1H 2022 mainly relates to the valuation movements on the Group’s investment properties as at 30 June 2022, based on management assessment made in consultation with the independent valuers who had carried out the valuation of the investment properties as at the last financial year end, as well as the adjustment of fair value of right-of-use ("ROU") investment properties that were leased as at 30 June 2022, in accordance with SFRS(I) 16 Leases.

Net fair value gain of S$9.5 million in 1H 2022 was mainly due to the Group’s investment properties in UK and Australia and offset against the fair value loss of investment properties in Singapore as well as against the adjustment of fair value of the ROU investment properties. This was compared against a fair value loss of S$14.5 million in 1H 2021 when the market conditions and occupancy rates were more affected by COVID-19 and the adjustment of fair value of ROU investment properties.

Income tax expenses increased by S$10.6 million largely due to higher profit and deferred income tax provided on the fair value gain in investment properties.

Accordingly, net profit after tax derived from the Group’s operations for 1H 2022 was S$35.1 million, as compared to S$9.1 million in 1H 2021.

Excluding fair value adjustments, net profit derived from core business operations was S$32.4 million in 1H 2022, which was S$8.4 million higher than S$24.0 million in 1H 2021.

(b) Review of Group Balance Sheet

Assets

Cash and bank balances reduced by S$6.9 million to S$60.6 million as at 30 June 2022, largely due to repayment of borrowings and dividends paid during 1H 2022.

Trade and other receivables decreased by S$2.6 million, mainly due to the collection of outstanding debts due to the Group.

Investment properties reduced by S$24.9 million, largely due to the weakening of the British Pound and Australian dollars, offset in part by fair value gain.

Lease liabilities decreased by S$9.8 million to S$95.4 million mainly due to the repayment of the principal component of the lease liabilities.

Deferred income tax liabilities increased by S$5.8 million due to higher tax provisions made as a result of the fair value gain on investment properties.

Borrowings & Gearing

TThe Group’s borrowings reduced from S$727.7 million as at 31 December 2021 to S$690.6 million as at 30 June 2022, largely due to the repayment of borrowings and foreign currency denominated loans which particularly affected by the weakening of British Pounds and Australian dollars.

The Group’s net gearing ratio was 46% as at 30 June 2022, an improvement compared to 47% as at 31 December 2021. The Group’s acquired operating assets and assets under development are primarily funded through bank borrowings, which have an average remaining maturity profile of 6 years. The Group uses long-term bank debt with regular principal repayments to finance its long-term assets.

As at 30 June 2022, the Group’s balance sheet remained healthy with S$60.6 million in cash and bank balances. With net current liabilities of S$50.6 million as at 30 June 2022, the Group has ample cash resources and banking facilities of S$178.9 million in place to meet its current liabilities.

(c) Review of Company Balance Sheet

Current trade and other receivables mainly relate to advances given to subsidiaries for its working capital.

(d) Review of Statement of Cash Flows

In 1H 2022, the Group generated a positive cash flow of S$44.9 million from operating activities.

Net cash used in investing activities amounted to S$0.7 million, mainly due to additions to investment properties.

The Group recorded net cash used in financing activities of S$51.5 million mainly for the repayment of borrowings, interest, principal portion of lease liabilities and dividends paid during the period.

Commentary On Current Year Prospects

As at 30 June 2022, Centurion operates a diversified portfolio of 36 operational purpose-built workers and student accommodation assets (“PBWA” and “PBSA” respectively), comprising 65,077 beds diversified across Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, South Korea, the United Kingdom (“UK”) and the United States (“US”).

Workers Accommodation

Singapore

In Singapore, the Group operates nine PBWAs including five Purpose-Built Dormitories (“PBDs”) comprising approximately 28,000 beds, and four Quick Build Dormitories (“QBDs”) comprising 6,368 beds. Excluding the QBDs, the average financial occupancy for the Group's PBDs was 96% for 1H 2022, an improvement of 14 percentage points, as compared to 82% for 1H 2021.

Of the four QBDs, two commenced operations in 2H 2020 while the other two commenced operations in 2021. Occupancy of the four QBDs have ramped up quickly, and including the QBDs, the average financial occupancy for the Group’s nine PBWAs was 97% for 1H 2022.

With the reopening of the Singapore economy, the financial occupancy improved in tandem with the resumption of arrivals for dormitory-bound work pass holders in Singapore as the construction, marine shipyard and process sectors were granted an extension on foreign worker levy rebates by the Ministry of Manpower to retain existing workers and bring in more work permit holders1. Demand for migrant workers is expected to remain robust as Singapore is in transition to a new normal, with the Building and Construction Authority estimating that Singapore’s construction sector contracts will likely return to near pre COVID-19 levels of between S$27 billion and S$32 billion in 20222.

In September 2021, the Ministry of Manpower, Ministry of National Development, and the Ministry of Health announced the implementation of enhanced specifications3 for new workers dormitories, to strengthen resilience against future pandemics and further improve the liveability of workers dormitories. New specifications for existing dormitories are expected to be announced in 2022, taking into consideration constraints of current built infrastructure, with time and support extended by the authorities for the industry to achieve the desired state4.

The Group remains vigilant to safeguard against potential outbreaks of new variants of COVID-19 and other viruses, and continues to care for the physical, mental and social well-being of all its residents.

Malaysia

The Group’s Malaysian PBWA portfolio comprises eight properties spanning Johor in the South, Penang in the North and Selangor in the Central region of Peninsula Malaysia. The States of Johor, Penang, and Selangor are the top three states in Malaysia with the highest number of foreign workers in the manufacturing sector, which dominates the number of foreign workers, with about 35% of the country’s estimated 2 million foreign workforce5.

The Malaysian PBWA portfolio bed capacity was 24,411 beds as of 1 January 2022, following the completion of reconfiguration works to comply with the Workers’ Minimum Standards of Housing and Amenities (Amendment) Act 2019 (“Act 446”). The Group continually explores opportunities to grow organically by reconfiguring spaces to add bed capacity. In 2Q 2022, the Group completed asset enhancement works at Westlite Tebrau and added 688 beds to the portfolio.

In Malaysia, migrant worker population numbers had fallen during the COVID-19 pandemic with many workers departing and travel restrictions limiting new arrivals. Migrant workers are gradually returning but the migrant workforce has yet to resume to pre COVID-19 levels6,7 in 1H 2022, as employers faced delays from procedural and technical issues8 in bringing in workers. The average financial occupancy for the Malaysia PBWA portfolio was 70% for 1H 2022 as compared to 80% for 1H 2021. Occupancy is recovering gradually as new worker inflows progressively improve.

Student Accommodation

As at 30 June 2022, the Group had a portfolio of 6,080 beds across 19 operational PBSA assets in Australia, South Korea, the UK and the US. Financial occupancies in the Group’s PBSAs have improved across the markets in tandem with lifting of travel restrictions in these markets.

United Kingdom

The average financial occupancy in the Group’s UK portfolio, which comprises 10 assets strategically located near top universities, has improved from 66% in 1H 2021 to 90% in 1H 2022. The UK has lifted all COVID-19 travel restrictions and international students have been able to travel more easily to the UK. As of January 2022, UK higher education providers have hosted 605,130 international students in the Academic Year 2020/21, which is 8.7% higher than AY2019/209, hitting its target of 600,000 international students a decade earlier than its 2030 commitment10.

Pre-leasing for AY2022/23 is ongoing and bookings for the academic year commencing in August 2022 are strong. In May 2022, the Group announced the proposed acquisition of a 103-bed freehold PBSA asset, which will add a third PBSA asset to the Group’s two existing assets in Nottingham. The acquisition is expected to be completed in 4Q 2022.

Australia

In Australia, the average financial occupancy of the Group’s two assets in Adelaide and Melbourne improved from 27% in 1H 2021 to 58% in 1H 2022, as borders re-opened and international students were welcomed back into the country. There had been delays in the issuance of student visas11 but the Australian government is making efforts to improve the issuance of visas and international students are gradually returning throughout the term as visas were approved. Bookings for the second semester commencing in August 2022 are healthy and the demand recovery trend is expected to continue into 2023.

South Korea

In South Korea, dwell Dongdaemun has shown strong recovery, with financial occupancy increasing to 82% in 1H 2022 as compared to 55% in 1H 2021. The Group notes continued recovery, with robust pre-leasing for the second semester of the Academic Year commencing in August 2022.

United States

Centurion’s US portfolio comprises six freehold PBSAs, which are held under the Centurion US Student Housing Fund ("Fund"), the Group’s inaugural private fund. Centurion holds approximately 28.7% of the total number of units in issue in the Fund and is the manager of the Fund and its assets. The average financial occupancy has remained healthy and stable in 1H 2022 compared to 1H 2021. These PBSA assets have been put up for sale12 as the Fund comes to the end of its term. The Fund is in the process of reviewing bids for this portfolio.

Looking Ahead

The global economy is on track to recover from COVID-19. Amidst the easing of COVID-related travel restrictions and border controls, migrant workers and students are returning across the geographical territories where Centurion operates.

Inflationary pressures and rising interest rates will add to operating costs and financing expenses, which the Group expects will be offset in the main by positive rental rate reversions across its markets. The Group also continues to calibrate its assets, spaces and operations, adjusting to market shifts and regulatory changes, to improve future pandemic management resilience and ensure the well-being of its worker and student residents.

The Group will continue its strategic review of its specialised accommodation portfolio as part of its efforts to rationalise its portfolio of assets for capital recycling and capital reallocation to enhance shareholders’ value. As part of its continuing efforts to deliver sustained, long-term value to shareholders, the Group will continue to seek opportunities for strategic global expansion through investments in synergistic assets and businesses.

Remarks:
1. ‘Foreign worker levy rebate for construction, marine shipyard and process extended till June 2022’, The Straits Times, 29 March 2022
2. ‘Construction demand for 2022 to return to near pre-Covid-19 levels’, The Straits Times, 26 January 2022.
3. ‘Improved Standards for New Migrant Worker Dormitories to Strengthen Public Health Resilience and Enhance Liveability’, Ministry of National Development, 17 September 2021
4. ‘MOM to embark on multi-year road map to build more resilient migrant workforce: Tan See Leng’, The Straits Times, 18 December 2021
5. ‘The Changing Landscape Of Workers’ Accommodations’, Knight Frank, November 2021
6. ‘Malaysia's glove industry appeals for foreign labour intake amid Covid-19 restrictions’, The Straits Times, 28 September 2021
7. ‘Malaysia to speed up hiring of 180,000 foreign workers to ease shortage’, South China Morning Post, 14 April 2022
8. ‘Hotel industry urges government to speed up approvals for foreign workers’, Free Malaysia Today, 03 July 2022
9. ‘International Student Statistics in UK 2022’, Studying-in-UK.org, Retrieved 25 July 2022
10. ‘UK Meets Target of 600,000 International Students Ten Years Earlier Than Planned’ , Erudera College News, 25 January 2022.
11. ‘Australian government moves to fix student delays’, The PIE news, 27 June 2022
12. ‘Launch Of Sale Process In Respect Of Portfolio Of Assets In The United States Held By Centurion US Student Housing Fund’, Centurion announcement, 22 April 2022