CK Hutchison, CK Asset profits rise in H1

HONG KONG, Aug 5 (Reuters) - CK Hutchison, the ports-to-telecoms arm of retired billionaire Li Ka-shing, posted a 41% rise in first-half net profit on Thursday, helped by recoveries in ports and retail and in energy following its merger with Cenovus Energy.

Profit rose to HK$18 billion ($2.31 billion) from HK$13 billion a year earlier, after accounting adjustments.

Chairman Victor Li said in a statement he expects the group’s growth trajectory to deliver a solid performance for the full year.

Sister company CK Asset, a major property developer in Hong Kong which also has interests in aircraft leasing, infrastructure and utility assets overseas, reported a first-half net profit up 31% to HK$8.4 billion.

That was led by a $2.2 billion deal to acquire interests in four European utilities from the Li Ka Shing Foundation.

CK Hutchison declared an interim dividend of HK$0.8 per share, up 30% from a year earlier, while CK Asset’s was HK$0.41, 20.6% higher.

Shares of CK Hutchison ended up 0.1% on Thursday ahead of the results, while CK Asset fell 1.7%. The Hang Seng Index closed 0.8% lower.

$1 = 7.7766 Hong Kong dollars Reporting by Clare Jim; editing by Jason Neely