SingPost shares took a hit as the company announced a stunning quarter loss of $65.2 million. The loss came about after SingPost decided to write off $185 million for the ill-fated TradeGlobal, S$20.5 million for Postea Inc., and S$9.3 million for an industrial property at 3B Toh Guan Road East.
The latest setback for Singapore’s postal service provider came at a time of transformation for the 150 years old institution. As more and more companies switch to electronic statements, SingPost is transforming its business to eCommerce logistic. At the centre of the storm was the significant impairment of TradeGlobal, which was only acquired by SingPost less than two years ago.
Many investors were shocked that SingPost decided to write off its investment in TradeGlobal so soon. Two years are considered a relatively short time frame to judge a company’s potential growth. One plausible factor could be that the management is not convinced of a turnaround for TradeGlobal and hence, made the decision to cut losses early. It was reported that instead of a projected profit of S$9.4 million for FY16/17, TradeGlobal incurred a significant loss of S$25.8 million.
Given the extent of the impairment to SingPost’s investment in TradeGlobal, SingPost also appointed FTI Consulting, an independent global business advisory firm, which has verified that the impairment provision was properly calculated following an appropriate review process and that the assumptions adopted were reasonable.
Following the failed investment in TradeGlobal, investors might be questioning SingPost’s ability to transform itself into an eCommerce player. Make no mistake, when it comes to technology companies, there is always a high risk of failing. Out of ten companies, seven or eight would fail. To win the game, SingPost must push on and continue to invest in technology companies which are aligned to its business model. But most importantly, SingPost must [This is a premium article. The rest of the content is blocked and can be accessible by SG Wealth Builder Members only. To read the full content, please sign up as member.]
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