CJ shares buoyed by strong performance of major units and “Parasite” halo

2020.02.13 14:19:07 | 2020.02.13 15:33:33

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Shares of CJ Corp., holding company of the South Korean food and media conglomerate, are on a bull run, buoyed by strong earnings of its key food unit and the Oscar victory of “Parasite,” a movie financed and distributed by its entertainment arm CJ ENM Co.

CJ shares closed Thursday 8.04 percent higher at 95,400 won ($81).

Shares of CJ affiliates jumped across the board. Food units CJ CheilJedang Corp. and CJ Seafood Corp. gained 3.38 percent and 2.28 percent, respectively. CJ ENM surged 8.65 percent and the cinema chain CJ CGV climbed 1.38 percent.

CJ ENM shares soared after “Parasite,” a dark social satire by director Bong Joon-ho, made Oscar history by picking up four awards, including best picture, becoming the first film not in English to win the top prize.

CJ CheilJedang, in its earnings guidance Wednesday, said it posted a consolidated operating profit of 269.8 billion won in the final quarter, up 56.3 percent from a year earlier. Sales jumped 21.1 percent to 5.96 trillion won. Net profit came to 93.5 billion won compared with a 50.9 billion won loss a year ago.

For the full year, operating profit climbed 7.7 percent to 896.9 billion won. Sales rose 19.7 percent to an all-time high of 22.4 trillion won. Net profit finished at 191 billion won, down 79.4 percent from a year ago.

The company said its bottom line improved last year thanks to brisk sales of its main brands and improved financial structure.

Kim Han-yee, researcher at KTB Investment & Securities, said the strong fourth-quarter results of CJ CheilJedang, which accounts for 62 percent of the holding entity’s operating profit, helped buoy the CJ Group stock.

Earnings reports of all major units would be out this week, clearing market uncertainties, she added.

Kim kept the neutral investment outlook and maintained CJ’s price target at 100,000 won per share.

By Kim Hyo-jin

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