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KUALA LUMPUR: The headwinds continue to blow for Panasonic Manufacturing Malaysia Bhd as raw material prices and operating expenses are projected to continue rising over the remainder of the year.
According to Hong Leong Investment Bank (HLIB) Research, the group is expected to continue raising the prices of some of its products to protect its margins from the rising costs.
"PMM have increased selling prices by 5%-10% for certain models to mitigate the impact of rising input costs.
"The group is also expecting to roll out similar price hikes for other products in 2H22.
"Despite that, we opine that the group will only be able to partially pass on the costs to consumer and would still have to face eroding margins," it said in an update following a recent meeting with the group.
Meanwhile, Panasonic's revenue is also expected to be impacted by the termination of its rice cooker and kitchen appliances segment.
HLIB said there were restructuring costs of RM12.2bil for the termination of the rice cooker products, which have been loss-making in past years due to high raw material costs.,
Some kitchen appliance products will also be terminated in FY23 due to a realignment of global production for the group.
"Based on management guidance, the termination of rice cooker and kitchen appliances will impact its revenue by 6% and 7%, respectively," said HLIB.
In addition, the group incurred substantial losses from inventory and facility damage following the flood incident at its SA2 plant in December 2021. The incident also disrupted its sales operations in FY22.
"The total losses amounted to approximately RM24.7m and we understand that the insurance claimed so far only covers 49% of the total loss with remaining amount still under review.
"Currently, the utilization rate for fan segment is running at 85% and vacuum cleaner is at 90%," said HLIB.
The research firm reiterated "sell" on the counter with an unchanged target price of RM22.23.