Utusan shares hit by 7th quarterly net loss in a row

PETALING JAYA: Shares in Utusan Melayu (M) Bhd fell 27.27% this morning, dropping 3 sen to 8 sen for a market capitalisation of RM8.86 million at 9.15am.

According to a report by The Edge Markets, the group turned in a seventh consecutive quarterly net loss at RM3.89 million for the three-month period ending June 30.

Its quarterly revenue had more than halved to RM25.91 million from RM63.87 million in the same quarter last year.

Utusan has been in the red since 2012. In August last year, the company triggered the PN17 criteria after defaulting on its principal and profit payments to Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd and Maybank Islamic Bhd totalling RM1.18 million.

Bernama reported yesterday that the group also faces possible delisting from Bursa Malaysia in view of its financial distress and failure to find a white knight to bail it out.

The possibility of delisting arose after talk that the country’s oldest Malay daily, established in 1939 with Utusan Melayu as its first publication in Jawi, would cease publication tomorrow after operating for 80 years.

Nearly 100 current and former Utusan employees demonstrated in front of the daily’s main office yesterday, claiming that the company had failed to pay them their wages for a month and a half now.