Increased orders drive up record sales for Makalot

By Kevin Chen  /  Staff reporter

Sat, Jan 19, 2013 - Page 14

Apparel manufacturer Makalot Industrial Co (聚陽實業) on Thursday posted record sales and pre-tax income for last year, as the company benefited from new orders and an expanded customer base.

Consolidated sales rose 4.92 percent year-on-year to NT$15.87 billion (US$546 million) and pre-tax profit advanced 3.21 percent to NT$1.42 billion last year, or NT$8.59 per share, the Taipei based company said in a filing to the Taiwan Stock Exchange.

However, pre-tax profit in the October-to-December quarter, totaling NT$234.53 million, was 42.99 percent lower than the previous quarter’s NT$411.41 million and was 39.04 percent less than the NT$384.69 billion it posted for the same period in 2011, company data showed.

Analysts attributed the declines to rising labor costs in China and Southeast Asia as well as falling average selling prices, while the New Taiwan dollar’s appreciation against the US dollar also eroded its bottom line in the quarter, they said.

Makalot’s customer base is department stores and includes Kohl’s Corp and JC Penney Co, mass retailers like Target Corp and Wal-Mart Stores Inc, as well as apparel specialty stores such as Hanesbrands, Carter’s, H&M and Zara, with about 85 percent of its products sold in the US.

Last year the company landed new orders from President Chain Store Corp (統一超商), the operator of Taiwan’s largest convenience store chain, 7-Eleven, launched new winter shirts made by Makalot, while Makalot, hoping to widen its customer base, broadened its distribution channels and improved its economies of scale through the deal.

JPMorgan analyst Caren Huang said in a recent report that she forecast the project contributed 2 percent to Makalot’s total revenue last year and would contribute 2.5 percent this year.

Last year Makalot also secured orders from Internet-based fashion brand Lativ, hypermarket operator RT-Mart (大潤發), French firm Decathlon and Japan’s Fast Retailing, the operator of cheap-chic clothing chain Uniqlo, helping to boost its overall shipments by 14 percent to 9.3 million dozens.

For this quarter, Fubon Securities Investment Services Co (富邦投顧) analyst Kerry Wu (吳致勤) said the company could meet its guidance of 2.6 million dozens and forecast this year’s shipments would reach 10.5 million dozens, driven by strong orders from its US customers and non-US apparel brands.

Makalot has its headquarters and R&D center in Taipei, with representative offices in Shanghai and Paris. It operates factories in China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia and the Philippines.

Shares of Makalot rose 2.95 percent yesterday to NT$97.8., in Taipei trading outperforming the TAIEX’s 1.53 percent rise.

It has risen 37.17 percent over the last 12 months, compared with the benchmark index’s 6.9 percent increase.