STOCKS NEWS THAILAND-Phillip upgrades hotelier Minor to 'buy'

Thu Mar 21, 2013 4:18am EDT

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Phillip Securities raised its rating on hotelier and leisure company Minor International Pcl to 'buy' from 'accumulate', citing its growing portfolio that should continue to support core earnings.

Minor reported a net profit growth of 18.35 percent year-on-year at 3,409 million baht ($117.11 million). According to Phillip Securities, much of the growth was chiefly credited to strong hotel performance.

The Minor group will hand out its 2012 dividend of 0.30 baht per share on April 11.

The research house said in a report that the Minor group planned to expand its portfolio with its long-term business plan to 2017 by adding more to its hotel, real estate, and restaurant businesses.

"Minor group aims to boost the number of equity-owned and purely-managed hotel properties to at least 140 from 82... the number of food outlets to more than 2,700 from 1,381, the number of residential units to more than 200 from 67, and the number of outlets in retail trading business to 260 from 235," it said.

Phillip Securities raised its target price on the stock to 29 baht from 21.20. At 1502 GMT, the stock was down 1.67 percent at 23.60 baht.

1502 (0802 GMT) ($1 = 29.1100 Thai baht) (Reporting by Pairat Temphairojana; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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