Despite a drop in revenue during the month of March, when the coronavirus began to slow down business activity, Jamaica’s Stationery and Office Supplies (SOS) is boasting its third-best first-quarter results to date.
The company reported revenue of JM$337 million for the period ending March 31, 2020 — 2.5 per cent less than in the corresponding period last year. In addition, expenses increased by 10 per cent to JM$121.4 million when compared to JM$110.9 million posted a year earlier.
“Notwithstanding this, SOS was able to post our third-highest pre-tax profit figure in a quarter of [JM]$43.8 million,” Deputy Managing Director Allan McDaniel wrote in a report to shareholders.
SOS posted pre-tax profit for March 31, 2019 of JM$57.5 million or 24 per cent higher than that recorded for the current quarter.
“During the last month of the quarter (March), the effect of the virus was evident as revenues decline year-on-year for the month by 17 per cent.”— Allan McDaniel, deputy managing director, Stationery and Office Supplies
In the report, McDaniel explains that SOS was on target to record its best-ever first-quarter performance after the first two months. In fact, in January the company shipped a container of its products to Grenada.
However, after Jamaica confirmed its first case of coronavirus, the country’s response to the news began taking a toll on business activity, he said.
“During the last month of the quarter (March), the effect of the virus was evident as revenues decline year-on-year for the month by 17 per cent,” the deputy managing director related.
In the meantime, SOS increased its total assets by seven per cent, jumping from JM$878 million last year to JM$938 million in the period under review. The company attributed this growth to the purchase of new equipment and 65 per increase in cash.