Legend Holdings - Portfolio Expands in All Areas

HONG KONG, Apr 2, 2018 - (ACN Newswire) - According to South China Morning Post, Legend Holdings Corporation (stock code 03396) reports 2017 revenue was 316.3 billion yuan, up 3 per cent, thanks to subsidiaries' solid growth, writes John Cremer

The annual results announced by Legend Holdings Corporation for the financial year ending December 31, 2017 are notable for several reasons. The figures confirm that, since listing, the company and its subsidiaries have achieved solid growth for three consecutive years, with consistent gains made in each of its business sectors.

Importantly, though, the overall portfolio is also continuing to develop. And there is a strong sense of confidence that by implementing the right strategies and taking advantage of advances in science and technology, the company will see sustainable progress and further breakthroughs.

The main areas, in terms of strategic emphasis, are financial service; innovative consumption and services; agriculture and food; and IT and new materials. However, the company also has a significant financial investments business, through which it has been able to find opportunities, create synergies and enhance overall performance, using what it calls "the two-wheel-drive business model".

Thanks to all that, the results for 2017 show group revenue of 316.3 billion yuan (HK$395.45 billion), which represents an increase of 3 per cent compared to the previous year. The net profit attributable to equity holders amounted to 5.05 billion yuan, a 4 per cent increase from the previous period.

Because of that, earnings per share came to 2.16 yuan, an increase of 5 per cent, with the recommendation of a final dividend payment of 0.27 yuan per ordinary share before tax.

Speaking on behalf of the board, Liu Chuanzhi, chairman of Legend Holdings, confirmed that various strategic investment initiatives had been well-executed during the year and indicates that the company would continue to improve operating procedures and internal mechanisms, and would build on existing strengths.

In particular, he added, there would be greater focus on capturing opportunities in the mainland market that results from major trends, sometimes referred to as "consumption upgrading" and the desire to experience more of the "good life".

"We will continue to take advantage of available resources and insist on value creation in achieving our goals," Liu said, "At the same time, the company will also implement forward-looking strategies based on the need for long-term development and sustainable momentum for future growth."

Regarding financial services, he noted that three subsidiaries had all performed well during the reporting period. Zhengqi Financial recorded a net profit of 839 million yuan, a 16 per cent increase from the previous year. Its "investment-loan linkage" business model is working effectively and should continue to prosper. Koala Technology mainly offers innovative financial services and had an operating income of 1.73 billion yuan. In turn, JC International Finance & Leasing, which was only incorporated in November 2015, reported operation income of 719 million yuan and a net profit of 180 million yuan, up 122 per cent from 2016.

Zhu Linan, president of Legend Holdings, added: "In 2018, the group will continue reinforcing the synergy advantage of value creation and the two-wheel-drive businesses model, through clear strategy and stronger execution, to drive more strategic outcome in the future. We hope for a better return to shareholders with our more optimized investment portfolio and significant value growth."

He added that the Group would "actively display the synergy between strategic investment and financial investments. Based on the practical experience, Legend Holdings will elevate the synergic driving model of two-wheel-drive business to strategic height, on the premise of maintain the independence of fund management, to fully release the advantages of the two major businesses, and promote business cooperation, enhance the value of the Group and investment return."

Highlights included a joint investment with Hony Capital in Better Sun Educational Group, a leading operator of premium kindergartens in mainland China. In cooperation with Legend Capital, a separate investment was made in Eastern Air Logistics, reflecting the move towards mixed ownership as part of the reform of China's state-owned enterprises.

In its agriculture and food operations, the company has put special emphasis on improving the quality of food for Chinese consumers. To this end, using Joyvio Group as a platform, it developed two supply chains-one for fresh fruits, the other for fresh seafood-in the course of 2017. The blueberries planted by Golden Wing Mau, a Joyvio subsidiary, also hit a record-high production volume, thereby consolidating a positon as the number one domestic brand. Elsewhere, KB Food has made strides in its animal protein related business. Qingdao Starfish, a seafood importer, processor and distributor, had also become a major exporter of Pollock. The acquisition of a 68.58 per cent stake in Nine Masters has opened up new possibilities in creating an integrated supply chain for raw ingredients and food products.

In future, for IT-related investments, the company believes that challenges and opportunities coexist. It is also confident that Levima Group, maker of advanced materials and specialty chemicals which achieved a 4 per cent improvement for the reporting period, will see further gains in profitability and market influence.

Liu added that results from the financial investments business had been excellent, with net profit growth of 42 per cent in 2017. There are three fund platforms-Legend Capital, Hony Capital and Legend Star-and the total fund size is now close to 110 billion yuan. The funds invest in everything from the health care sector to sports, property, overseas projects, and "red-chip return concepts".

One objective now is to look for new opportunities in "frontier technology" and "new life" business, while balancing overall risk with fixed-income investments that offer the necessary stability.

- South China Morning Post

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