Stock Groups

Top Glove shares fall as Covid-induced demand eases


Shares of Malaysia’s Top Glove, the world’s largest medical glove maker, have fallen by more than 50% this year as the rollout of Covid-19 vaccinations worldwide dampened demand for gloves.

There are always highs, and then there are lows. It is impossible to expect long-term super profits. So, we’re glad that we had a good run last year,” Lee Kim Meow, Top Glove’s managing director, told CNBC’s “Street Signs Asia” on Monday.

Thursday’s company announcement revealed a 48% decrease in net profit from the previous year to 608million Malaysian ringgit ($145.11 millions) for the period June-to-August. The company’s revenue was approximately 2.1 billion Ringgit. This is 32% less than the year before.

The results “were softer on the back of normalising demand, following mass vaccine rollout on a global scale, leading to lower sales volume and [average selling prices], which were not matched by a corresponding reduction in raw material prices,” Top Glove said in its financial statement.

As with every business, there are highs and lows. You can’t expect to make super profits for long periods of time.

Lee Kim Meow

Managing Director, Top Glove

In addition, the company’s sales were hit by a U.S. import ban due to allegations of forced labor practices. The ban was lifted A few days earlier in the month.  

Top Glove Malaysian shares dropped more than 5 percent on Monday. Its year-to-date loss of over 52% has been extended.

Other Malaysian glove stocks also declined, with Hartalega, Supermax and Kossan registering losses of between 3% and 5% on Monday.

In comparison, the benchmark stock index FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI Index dropped less than 1% on the same day.

Last year, Top Glove shares jumped 290% as it reported record sales and profits, thanks to surging demand for gloves during the pandemic.

Hong Kong stock listing

Top Glove delayed a plan to seek a “dual primary listing” to raise $1 billion on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange after the company was slapped with the U.S. import ban.

Lee stated that the company is still keen to proceed with the listing. Top Glove already has a primary listing in Malaysia and a secondary listing in Singapore.

According to the managing director, “We believed that listing in Hong Kong was essential for our long-term business. We also felt that this would allow us to move forward and see the many benefits.”

He said, “A Hong Kong listing will place us in a favorable position to prosper for our dream of becoming a Fortune Global 500 Company in 2030.”