Beximco Ltd bought a 5.25 per cent stake in the state-run Bangladesh Shipping Corporation (BSC) at the expense of around Tk 1.18 billion in anticipation of a boost to its own profit in the days to come.
The investment is part of a strategy applied across the business portfolio of Beximco, said company Secretary Mohammad Asad Ullah.
"The BSC will purchase more ships to expand its operation, as decided by the government. That's why Beximco acquired stakes in the BSC expecting higher returns amid the surge in shipping charges," he said.
To acquire the stake, Beximco had purchased 80,08,090 shares of the BSC at market prices in the last few weeks, Mr Ullah said.
The stock of the Shipping Corporation had a sharp rise between October 30 and November 6 this year. During the period, its share price advanced 22.40 per cent, or Tk 27.40, to Tk 150.6.
On Monday, the stock fell to Tk 133.50.
The share price of Beximco hit the floor at Tk 115.60 each on October 30. The company's shares were traded above the floor price in two sessions and then the trading closed at the floor prices in eight sessions including on Monday.
Meanwhile, Beximco's board of directors on Sunday decided to join BSC's board of directors, based on the 5.25 per cent ownership of the state-run company.
Amid these developments, Beximco disclosed financials for July-September (Q1) in FY23, according to which the company had a marginal decline in earnings per share (EPS) compared to the same quarter a year ago.
It has reported EPS of Tk 3.83 for the quarter, decreased from Tk 4.11 for July-September 2021.
Beximco's company Secretary Mr. Asad said the profit was low due to the adverse global scenario rendered by the Ukrain-Russia war.
"The rise in export costs, depreciation of local current and disruption in gas and electricity supply left an impact on the company's profits," Asad said.
The company had seen a robust growth in EPS for FY22 compared to the year before. It reported an EPS of Tk 14.32 for the fiscal 2021-22, a 90.17 per cent growth from the previous fiscal year.
In the first quarter of FY23, cash flow from operating activities rose sharply to Tk 2.57 billion from Tk 994.80 million the year before.
The net operating cash flow per share was up 157.89 per cent to Tk 2.94 for Q1 of FY23, compared to the same quarter of the previous fiscal year.
Beximco, presently an 'A' category company, was listed with the stock exchange in 1989.
Its sponsor-directors held 33.94 per cent shares, institutes 29.12 per cent, foreigners 0.77 per cent and individual investors 36.17 per cent at the end of October this year.
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