MANILA, Philippines – LT Group Inc. grew its net earnings in the first semester to P4.56 billion, 28 percent higher than the previous year.
The banking business contributed 38 percent of LTG’s income or P1.73 billion while the tobacco business comprised 32 percent or P1.45 billion.
PNB reported a net income of P4.42 billion, up eight percent year on year.
Equity in net earnings from the 49.6 percent stake in PMFTC Inc., the partnership between Fortune Tobacco and Philip Morris, reached P1.4 billion, significantly higher than the P420 million recorded a year earlier.
The conglomerate attributed this to the change in mix of PMFTC’s sales, with premium Marlboro accounting for a higher share of total volume.
LTG said that while there is some improvement, illicit trade continues to affect the overall profitability of the tobacco business.
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Asia Brewery Inc. (ABI) was also a significant contributor to total earnings, making up P720 million or 16 percent. Tanduay Distillers Inc. (TDI) added P444 million or 10 percent.
ABI’s Cobra energy drink, Absolute and Summit bottled water, Tanduay Ice alcopop and Vitamilk soymilk continue to be market leaders, LTG said.
“The exceptionally hot summer and some impact from election-related spending resulted in the growth in volumes of ABI’s products. In late May, the company signed a joint venture agreement with Heineken for the beer business,” LTG said.
TDI reported a 148 percent jump in net profit to P444 million as revenues grew with the recognition of bioethanol sales this year even as volume for liquor was relatively flat during the period.
Property arm Eton meanwhile contributed P132 million or three percent as it generated a net income of P133 million or an increase of 18 percent.
Equity in net earnings from Victorias Milling Co. Inc. (VMC), meanwhile, amounted to P96 million, or two percent of the group’s earnings.