GL: Pioneering Successful Expansion into CLMV, with Q3 Profits Hitting New High

10 Nov 2015

SET-listed motorcycle leasing firm Group Lease Public Company Limited (GL) has reported new record-high profits from its Q3 2015 financial results which underscored continuous strengths in the company’s overseas operations, particularly those in Cambodia that are now generating more profits than Thailand.

Consolidated net profits were recorded at 150.27 million baht, representing an astronomical 3,124% jump from the same period last year. This was the highest ever quarterly profits in the company’s history. On a Q-to-Q basis, this also constituted a 16% increase from the 129.47 million baht net profits in Q2 this year.

GL Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Mitsuji Konoshita attributed the sharp increases in profitability to the company’s overseas businesses, particularly those in neighboring Cambodia where the economy is booming, whereas operations in Thailand have stabilized.

Of the total 150.27 million baht Q3 net profits, roughly 70 million baht came from the Thai operations (about the same as in Q2) while the remaining 80 million baht were contributed from overseas. “This shows that profits from our overseas operations (the bulk of which from Cambodia) have now surpassed that of Thailand,” Mr. Konoshita stated.

The GL boss is particularly bullish on the company’s regional expansion. He said the trend of overseas operations making larger profit contributions will continue to gather stronger momentum as GL taps the huge growth potentials in Cambodia while the recently established operations in Laos are expected to become profitable starting in the current quarter. Meanwhile, operations in Indonesia are expected to start early next year.

GL’s strategic expansion into CLMV (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam) in recent years has now become an outstanding success story among Thai companies seeking to diversify from the relatively stagnated economy in Thailand into the booming markets of the neighboring countries.

According to Mr. Konoshita, the growth potentials in Cambodia remain solid for many more years in the face of the country’s booming economy and the emergence of a large middle class having sufficient purchasing power. He revealed that GL Finance (GLF), GL’s subsidiary there, has recently expanded into the “ground-breaking” new business of financing for small and medium enterprises (SMEs). This is on top of its traditional lines of motorcycle and farm-machinery leasing and nano financing.

GLF is now doing about 2,000 motorcycles per month and this is expected to increase to about 3,000 units by year’s end and monthly sales are projected to grow further to 3,000-5,000 units next year. The current outstanding portfolio is about US$80 million with an extremely low non-performing loans (NPLs) rate of only 0,4%.

The positive outlook in Cambodia is set against a no-growth scenario in Thailand where the outstanding portfolio has remained roughly unchanged at about 5 billion baht although the overall assets quality has improved and the Thai NPLs are projected to decrease from about 6.5% at present to about 5% by year’s end.

The stronger performance in Cambodia aside, GL said in its filing with the SET today (Nov 10, 2015) that the provisions for bad and doubtful debts also dropped substantially from 138.66 million baht in Q3 last year to 83.43 million baht in Q3 this year. Representing roughly 40% reduction, this also reflects significant improvement in assets quality. Losses from the re-sale of compounded vehicles decreased 32.52% from 135.06 million baht to 91.14 million baht over the same period.