February 21st, 2020
21 February 2020 – iCar Asia Limited (‘iCar Asia’ or the ‘Company’), ASEAN's number 1 network of automotive portals, has released its unaudited Preliminary Financial Report for the year ending 31 December 2019. Final audited financial statements are expected to be released in the week beginning 24 February 2020 upon finalisation of audit processes related to the acquisition of Carmudi Indonesia. The Company delivered a 28% increase in revenue year-on-year to $14.8 million and, together with a lower cost base, the full year proforma EBITDA loss was significantly reduced by 45% to $5.5 million from $10.0 million in 2018, being EBITDA adjusted for non-cash share based payments.
In November 2019, the Company announced that it has achieved its first positive group run rate EBITDA in the month of November 2019. The Malaysia and Thailand businesses recorded their respective first full year EBITDA profit in 2019 after achieving their run rate EBITDA breakeven in 2018. Indonesia continued its strong traction following its monetisation initiatives in 2018 by substantially reducing its EBITDA loss by 60%.
Integration of the recently acquired Carmudi Indonesia business with the Company’s existing Indonesia operation is currently in progress and is expected to be completed in the first half of 2020. Expected cost and revenue synergistic benefit arising
from this acquisition is expected to begin realisation from second half of 2020.
As at 31 December 2019 the Group had $6.8 million in cash and liquid investments. Whilst the group has access to additional funds of up to $5 million from a debt facility, the Group is not factoring these additional funds into its current capital plans.
iCar Asia finished the year strongly in all 3 countries
The Malaysia business achieved an important financial milestone by achieving full year EBITDA and cashflow positivity in 2019. This was after becoming EBITDA and cashflow positive in the month of September 2018 and then its first full quarter of positive EBITDA and cashflow in the quarter ended December 2018. 2019 full year EBITDA profit was $1.6 million, a remarkable turnaround from EBITDA loss of $0.3 million in 2018. This was achieved on back of a strong growth in revenue of 40% year on year and focused cost efficiencies.
The Used Car - Classified and New Car - Media activities continued to be the main contributors, complemented by new revenue streams in Used Car - Auction and New Car – New Car Dealers, both of which are expected to be significantly scaled up in 2020. In addition, two major events were successfully executed in 2019 that further fuelled the growth in revenue and profit.
Malaysia operational metrics also progressed in several key areas, with a change in strategy in key marketing channels flowing through to new baselines in some operational metrics. Paid accounts for the final quarter of 2019 showed an average increase of 24% versus Q4 2018. The strategy to focus on listing quality where low quality or sold listings are removed from the marketplace was introduced in Q3 2018 thus the number of listing for Q4 2019 showed a marginal decrease of 7% year on year, but remained at almost the same level as Q3 2019. Audience and lead numbers in Q4 2019 decreased on average by 19% and 20% respectively compared to Q4 2018, but importantly leads in Q4 2019 increased by 4% versus Q3 2019.
The Thailand business also achieved an important financial milestone in 2019 by becoming EBITDA and cashflow positive for the full financial year despite a period of disruption from a general election and the Coronation of the King, where business activity levels considerably dropped. EBITDA for the full year was at $0.2 million, significantly improved from EBITDA loss of $0.6 million in 2018 while revenue grew by 7% despite the slowdown in business activities. The Used Car - Classified and New Car - Media segments continued to be the main contributors, complemented by new revenue streams in Used Car - Auction and New Car - New Car Dealers that are expected to be scaled up in 2020.
After a challenging year, the Thailand businesses finished the year in a strong state. The number of paid accounts was up by 1% in Q4 2019 versus Q4 2018 while listings were flat versus Q4 2018. Audience and Leads almost remained at the same level quarter on quarter versus Q3 2019, however still remained lower year on year (20% and 12% respectively), with the continued strategic push to quality audience and leads.
The Indonesian business achieved 69% revenue growth driven by a full year’s results of the monetisation strategies in Used Car introduced in 2018 and the contribution from the Carmudi Indonesia business acquired in November 2019. Revenue in 2019 increased to $1.9 million from $1.1 million in 2018 and, together with prudent cost control, EBITDA loss for the year was substantially reduced by 42% to $1.4 million from $3.4 million in 2018.
For the Group’s existing operations, the year also finished well in a number of key areas. The number of paid accounts increasing by 53% on average for Q4 2019 versus the same period in the previous year, and leads increasing by 9% respectively year on year. This was achieved despite audience in Q4 2019 being 11% lower than Q4 2018.
On 12 November 2019, the Group announced the acquisition of Carmudi Indonesia. Operationally the acquisition of Carmudi contributed to an uplift of 46% in audience in Indonesia’s combined business to 5.3 million unique visitors in the month of December 2019.
The expanded iCar Asia Indonesian business is expected to more than double the Group’s Indonesian revenues, increasing the overall revenue contribution of Indonesia in the Company approximately 12% to 22%. The identified synergies are expected to result in the combined Indonesian businesses breaking even in 2020.
“2019 was a year full of great achievements where the Group became run rate EBITDA break even, Malaysia and Thailand recorded their first full year EBITDA positive and Indonesia substantially cut its EBITDA losses. We have also completed the acquisition of Carmudi and this places us in an even stronger position to grow both our revenue and profit going in 2020.” said Hamish Stone, Managing Director and CEO of iCar Asia.
Hamish Stone appointed to Board of iCar Asia
In accordance with ASX listing rule 3.16, the Company is also pleased to announce that in recognition of his leadership and contribution to the iCar Asia, Mr. Hamish Stone has been appointed to the Board of iCar Asia as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer.
For more information please contact:
About iCar Asia Limited (www.icarasia.com)Listed on the Australia Securities Exchange, iCar Asia (ASX: ICQ) owns and operates ASEAN’s No.1 network of automotive portals. Headquartered in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, the company is focused on developing and operating leading automotive portals in Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand. iCar Asia is continuously working to capitalise on its market-leading positions, with its online properties currently reaching approximately 12million car buyers and sellers in the region every month.
iCar Asia Network of websites: