Sino-Global Results for Q3 2009

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sino-Global Shipping America, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SINO) a non-state-owned provider of shipping agency services operating primarily in China, announced its selected unaudited financial results for its third fiscal quarter of 2009 ended March 31, 2009.

Highlights for Q3 2009:
•    Revenues were $3.3m, an increase of 8.4% from $3m in the third quarter of 2008.
•    Gross margin was 24.2%, compared to 12.3% in the third quarter of 2008.
•    Operating margin was -7.5% in the third quarter of 2009, compared to 9.3% in the third quarter of 2008.
•    On April 27, 2009, Sino-Global announced that it had established branch offices in the ports of Yantai and Yingkou, enabling the Company to offer a full range of shipping agency services in two additional ports that serve approximately 8.7 million people.

On October 9, 2008, Sino-Global announced a program authorizing the company to repurchase up to 10% of its outstanding common stock over a 12-month period. As of March 31, 2009, Sino-Global had repurchased 69,400 shares. These purchases reflect the Company's confidence in its future growth prospects.

Cao Lei, Sino-Global's chief executive officer, said "The third fiscal quarter of 2009 was one of the most difficult quarters we have experienced, but we nevertheless delivered positive year-over-year growth on our top line and had noteworthy margin improvement. We were successful in diversifying away from shippers of commodities such as steel by picking up a major new client that has made a significant contribution to our improving margins. Going forward, we will continue to seek out opportunities to expand into complementary areas of service and new geographies. Since our IPO in May of last year, we have focused significant effort on the marketing and promotion of our shipping agency services among existing and potential clients alike. These efforts have resulted in an increased recognition of the Sino-Global brand, and we expect that these efforts, combined with our recently announced cost-cutting measures, will enable us to break even next quarter in a challenging world economy."

Revenues were $3.3m in the third quarter of 2009, an increase of 8.4% from $3m in the third quarter of 2008.

As a result of the current global economic downturn, fewer ships carried goods to and from China compared to the same period in 2008, and the company's revenue derived from existing customers shipping iron ore declined year-over-year. However, the decline was offset by business from a new customer that exports automobiles from China to countries in North America, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Sino-Global expects that it will continue to earn a substantial majority of its revenues from shipping agency services. The company has placed considerable focus on the promotion of its shipping agency services business in recent quarters and intends to expand its business scope to related and complementary areas in order to meet growth targets.

Costs of services were $2.5m in the third quarter of 2009, a decrease of 6.3% from $2.7m in the third quarter of 2008.

Gross profit was $0.8m in the third quarter of 2009, an increase of 112.6% from $0.4m in the third quarter of 2008. Gross margin was 24.2% in the third quarter of 2009, compared to 12.3% in the third quarter of 2008. The year-over-year improvement in gross margin was mainly the result of higher margin business from a new shipping agency customer as well as contribution from the company's owners' affairs services. The improvement was partially offset by the depreciation of the U.S. dollar against the Chinese yuan (RMB) in the same period, from RMB7.1597 to $1.00 in the three months ended March 31, 2008 to RMB6.8363 to US$1.00 in the three months ended March 31, 2009, a 4.52% percent average year-over-year depreciation of the U.S. dollar against the RMB. Because the company receives income in U.S. dollars but pays a majority of expenses in RMB, the depreciation of the U.S. dollar against the RMB has a negative effect on the company.

General and administrative expenses were $0.9m in the third quarter of 2009, an increase of 39.3% from $0.6m in the third quarter of 2008. The increase in general and administrative expenses was mainly due to salary expenses used to attract and retain high-caliber personnel, expenses related to becoming a public company, expenses related to business expansion and the implementation of a new information management system, office rental expenses and expenses for legal, accounting and other professional services.

Selling expenses were $101 thousand in the third quarter of 2009, an increase of 123.6% from $45 thousand in the third quarter of 2008, largely due to increased business promotion and travel expenses as well as expenses related to the Company's recently opened Hong Kong and Australia branches and servicing ships in additional ports.

Operating loss was $0.2m in the third quarter of 2009, a 12.7% decrease from $0.3m in the third quarter of 2008. Operating margin was -7.5% in the third quarter of 2009, compared to -9.3% in the third quarter of 2008.

Financial expenses were $9 thousand in the third quarter of 2009, compared to financial income of US$80 thousand in the third quarter of 2008. The financial expenses were largely the result of foreign currency exchange losses, which outweighed income from bank deposits.

Income tax expense was $1 thousand in the third quarter of 2009, a 92.6% decrease from $20 thousand in the third quarter of 2008.

Net loss was $99 thousand in the third quarter of 2009, a 66.6% decrease from $297 thousand in the third quarter of 2008. Net margin was -3.0% in the third quarter of 2009, compared to -9.8% in the third quarter of 2008.

Basic and diluted losses per share in the third quarter of 2009 were $0.03, compared to $0.16 in the third quarter of 2008.

As of March 31, 2009, the company had $7.3m in cash and cash equivalents, compared to $9.6m as of June 30, 2008. Net cash used in operating activities and capital expenditures for the third quarter of 2009 was $1.9m and $0.2m, respectively.

On October 9, 2008, Sino-Global's board of directors approved a share buyback authorizing the company to repurchase up to 10% of the Company's outstanding common stock for a period of 12 months. As of March 31, 2009, the Company had repurchased 69,400 shares from the open market at an average price of $2.74, including trading expenses.
 
Due to the global economic slowdown:
The amount of goods imported into China has decreased significantly, resulting in fewer ships from existing clients served.
While the Company has focused significant effort on the promotion of its shipping services business to current and new clients and has achieved positive revenue growth in the first three quarters of fiscal year 2009, the effects of the financial crisis have overshadowed these positive achievements.

Subsequently, the company is revising annual growth expectation downward, which may result in net losses for full fiscal year 2009.

The company additionally noted that as a result of cost-cutting measures announced March 30, 2009, it expects to break even in the fourth fiscal quarter of 2009, resulting in a full-year net loss from continuing operations before non-controlling interest of approximately $2m and a net loss of approximately $1.5m. These views are current and preliminary and are subject to change.

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