Turnover grew 2.7% or $5.7 million to $216.6 million against a generally patchy global macroeconomic backdrop. Leveraging on the Group’s geographically diversified customer base, greater focus was targeted at markets where the Group felt had a more positive outlook.
Total margins increased by $2.2 million due to the higher turnover and an improvement in the gross margin rate. The absence of two items incurred in FY16, a foreign exchange loss and a profit share for the directors in connection with the gain made from the sale of the properties at Waterloo Centre in Singapore, helped to lower the increase in overall operating expenses to $1.7 million for the year. Other income increased by $0.9 million mainly due to a foreign exchange gain of $0.7 million.
Profit from operations (PBIT), as shown on the face of the Consolidated Income Statement, decreased from $10.0 million to $4.4 million. However, on a like-for-like basis excluding the effects from the gain from the sale of property, PBIT increased from $2.5 million to $4.4 million. Profit before and after tax for the period were at $1.7 million and $0.8 million respectively.
Details relating to the performance of the business are set out in the Business Review section of the Annual Report (available for download, below).