MB Subba

Druk Holding and Investments (DHI) Group had an exceptional year in 2019 as it declared a Profit After Tax (PAT) of Nu 6,705 million (M).

This was an increase of 62.32 percent compared to the group’s PAT in 2018 of Nu 4,131.4M.

The increase in PAT is attributed to increasing in PAT from energy and resources segment (18.76 percent), communications and transport segment (25 percent), and finance segment (15.57 percent). But manufacturing segment suffered loss in 2019.

“Financial year 2019 was an exceptional year for the group companies. Almost all companies reported much higher level of performances as compared to any previous financial years,” a press release from DHI stated.

The DHI’s revenue grew by 8.69 percent to Nu 39,632M, while the expenditure grew by 3.85 percent only. The total revenue earned by the DHI Group for the year was Nu 39,632M compared with previous year’s Nu 36,462.89M.

The increase in expenditure, according to the press release, is primarily because of the increase in employee cost.

On the corporate governance (CG) front, DHI in 2019 streamlined the ‘term of references’ of board committees and continued with the capacity development and re-orientation programmes for directors and senior executives, according to the press release.

“A testament to being a CG champion, DHI for the fifth year in a row maintained clean accounts and no adverse audit observation was issued in its audited accounts for FY 2019,” it stated.

DHI, the press release stated, recognises that digitalisation is not an option, and its shareholders deserve all the potential efficiency gains, resource dividends, and economic returns that digitalisation delivers.

“We are wary that our country in general and the DHI group, in particular, is falling behind in terms of digitalization and digital transformation. Building a digital culture in the group is a key challenge in the coming years,” it states.

One of its future priorities is investment abroad. “Investing in markets beyond Bhutan requires expertise, and support from regulatory agencies as well as enabling policies.”

The DHI has committed investment of more than USD 14.5M in markets outside Bhutan.

“While challenge related to expertise is addressed through planned capacity building of our staff, regulatory issues within as well as regulatory issues of the country where we decide to invest remains an elusive challenge.”

The DHI states that amid Covid-19 DHI companies are braving challenges associated with the pandemic, from disrupted supply chains to losses in revenues. It states that the preliminary assessment of the impact of Covid-19 showed grim projections for 2020.

“Overcoming the pandemic with a similar performance like in FY 2019 would be a humongous task for the group,” the release stated.