KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 10 (Reuters) – Top Glove (TPGC.KL), the world’s largest medical glove maker, said its first-quarter profit was nearly wiped out and it expected the business environment in the near term to be challenging as competition intensifies amid slowing demand for its products.
The results, released on Friday, sent the Malaysian company’s shares, already down 60% this year, tumbling another 10%.
With the wave of new COVID-19 Omicron variant spreading globally, Top Glove said buyers were watching out for whether to stockpile gloves again.
“We have not seen the full response of how it has developed all over the world. A lot of our customers are basically on the lookout, and I believe some of them could be also replenishing their stock,” he said, referring to huge orders from the Middle East for medical use.
Top Glove was among the early beneficiaries of the pandemic as demand for its protective rubber gloves surged with rising infections, and its share price nearly quadrupled in 2020.
The company bet that the momentum would help it in a planned $1.9 billion listing in Hong Kong, but it had to slash that amount twice as its Kuala Lumpur-based stock then slumped as the pandemic waned and the United States imposed a year-long ban on the company’s products over alleged forced labour.
The ban was lifted in September.
Soruce – https://www.reuters.com/