Singer Bangladesh Ltd posted a 41 percent drop in sales for the second quarter of this year due to the countrywide 66-day general holiday declared to curb the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak.
The company earned revenue of Tk299.49 crore in the April-June period this year, down from Tk516.76 crore at the same period in the previous year.
Its net profit was also down by 80 percent to Tk7.89 crore and its earnings per share Tk0.79.
Meanwhile, in the first half of the current year, the company's revenue stood at Tk605.92 crore, 24 percent lower than that in the same period the previous year.
Its net profit also dropped by 63 percent to Tk19 crore, and earnings per share Tk1.91. The net operating cash flow per share stood at Tk39.49 negative in this period.
However, in the first quarter of the current financial year, the overall sale of the company went up by 12 percent to Tk306 crore.
A company official said that within various limitations, the company managed to open 60-70 percent of its shops out of 407 showrooms from 10 May. However, in Ramadan it could not open shops during rush hours after iftar.
Besides, only a few dealers could open their shops and corporate customers could not open their business at all.
However, despite all these limitations, Singer secured 50 percent sales in May 2020 of its target.
Though the government did not extend the general holiday after 30 May, it introduced cluster-based lockdowns based on zoning systems (Red, Yellow and Green).
Moreover, the flood has affected the north-eastern part of the country due to excessive rain in the upper basin, and many more districts have been inundated with floodwater from the beginning of the fourth week of June 2020.
All these factors and events together have impacted the lives of the people and business activities all over the country, and in the end, it has driven the sales downward. As economic and social activities are not normal, people are more concerned about their basic needs and are spending more on items like food, medicine, cleaning items, etc.
Collections from retail customers got slower when the deceleration of general holiday came, and during these general holidays, as everything remained closed and all people were advised to stay at home, payment by customers got delayed. For the same reason, their branch and shop managers were also unable to collect receivables from customers.
As a result, the risk of increasing outstanding dues made collection slower under this pandemic. The provision for bad debt needs to be kept higher than it is under normal circumstances. So, bad debt expenses also rise.
Singer Bangladesh sold only sewing machines till 1985. Later, it expanded its business to include electronics and home appliances.