Three Shares That Beat the Market Today

After having four consecutive days of gains last week, the Straits Times Index (SGX: ^STI) starts the current week with a 0.3% loss to 3,127 points. Japan had just dialled down its growth estimates for 2013 today while China reported over the weekend that its exports “plunged 18.1%” according to newswire BBC.

Either way, the blue chips here in Singapore reacted badly, with 19 of the Straits Times Index’s 30 constituents ending the day in the red while only seven others had made gains. But, the blue chips’ weak outing did not necessarily put a dampener on shares outside the index. Let’s take a look at some shares that managed to clock up some nice gains.

Amtek Engineering (SGX: M1P) gained 6.5% to S$0.57. Last Tuesday, the precision engineering company announced the acquisition of Interplex Industries, Inc., a “global leader in the design and manufacture of miniature precision engineered solutions for highly demanding customised interconnect and electronic packaging applications.” The acquisition, according to Amtek, would be earnings accretive on a pro forma basis.

It was reported in Amtek’s press release that Interplex had earned revenues of US$182 million in the six months ended 30 Nov 2013 with pro-forma EBITDA of US$16.5 million. With the acquisition, Amtek would be creating one of the largest precision engineering companies in the world with approximately S$1 billion in combined sales globally.

Amtek would be paying up to US$210 million for the purchase assuming Interplex hits its performance targets after the acquisition and would be funded by the former’s cash and new borrowings.

Lian Beng Group’s (SGX: L03) shares rose 2.8% to S$0.56. The company, which constructs residential, commercial, and civil engineering projects, had made known last Thursday that it would become a 5%-owner of dormitory operator Centurion Corporation Limited (SGX: OU8).

Lian Beng had paid S$21.7 million for those shares, which values Centurion at 1.5 times book value. Lian Beng believes that the acquisition would bring “synergies” as Centurion is a “property asset related company which requires construction services from time to time”. This would be “beneficial” for Lian Beng as a construction and property company in the future.

Breadtalk (SGX: 5DA) gained 2.1% to S$0.97. The food & beverage retail outlet operator had recently released its full-year results for 2013 and saw sales grow by 20% to S$536.5 million while profits were up 13% to S$13.6 million. Breadtalk has three divisions – Bakery, Food Atrium, and Restaurants – and all three delivered strong sales growth of at last 16.4% during the year.

The company has a target of hitting S$1 billion in sales by 2016 and having 2,000 F&B outlets by 2018. Judging from its latest results, it seems the company’s on the right track. Breadtalk ended 2013 with 836 outlets, up 22% from 686 in the previous year. If the growth rate in revenue and the number of store openings keeps up in the 20-plus% region, Breadtalk would be able to reach those targets.

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore writer Chong Ser Jing doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned.