Viet Nam's biggest bookstore chain sees big COVID-19 impact

Monday, Apr 27, 2020 18:09

Fahasha reports good results in 2019 but plans for lower results in 2020. — Phoro Fahasha Facebook

COVID-19 means many people are staying at home but it can’t force them to read. Impacted by the pandemic, Viet Nam’s largest bookstore has seen a drop in sales, with profits falling up to 90 per cent.

On April 26, the HCM City Book Distribution Joint Stock Company (Fahasa) reported successful results by the end of 2019, with an expanded system of 112 bookstores in 46 provinces and cities, but also forecast disappointing results for 2020.

Last year, Fahasa reached total revenue of VND3.7 trillion (US$158 million), an increase of 17 per cent compared to 2018. Its profit before tax in 2019 reached VND30.5 billion, an increase of 8 per cent over 2018.

The firm said the high growth rate was thanks to the general situation of the market and from attracting more and more customers to its expanding bookstore system nationwide.

In 2019, the firm opened five new bookstores in HCM City, Ha Noi, Dong Thap, Soc Trang and Kon Tum, bringing the total to 112 bookstores nationwide. The total assets of this bookstore chain have exceeded more than VND1 trillion for the first time.

Fahasa also expanded to international markets by opening a booth at Kyobo-Seoul bookstore in November 2019. Its Vietnamese bookstores in South Korea and Japan were operating successfully at the same time.

In terms of e-commerce, the revenue of has grown rapidly after three years of operation, said the firm.

However, the pandemic has impacted Fahasa significantly. The firm this year set a revenue target of VND2.6 trillion and profit of VND3 billion, down 30 per cent and 90 per cent over the same period last year, respectively.

According to Fahasa's audited financial assessment, the firm has more than VND260 billion in cash and bank deposits, accounting for about 25 per cent of the total assets, and inventories of VND651 billion.

Its bank loans total only VND3 billion, about 0.3 per cent of total assets. The State is holding 30.5 per cent in the firm.

Currently, the bookstore’s 9.1 million shares with the sticker FHS are traded on UpCoM. On Monday, each share was at VND35,000. The prices have remained unchanged for the past week. — VNS

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