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Author: kltrader   |   Latest post: Thu, 13 Jan 2022, 10:34 AM


MQ Research Initiates Coverage on Malaysia Gloves

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Macquarie Equities Research (MQ Research) initiates coverage on the Malaysia gloves sector, with a view that the glove manufacturers have production cost advantages over its China peers and any newer entrants. Although average selling price uncertainty lingers, valuations have turned attractive with all three glove makers trading at EV/share below pre-pandemic levels.

MQ Research names Kossan as its top pick within the sector. Read on for MQ Research’s order of preference and target prices in an excerpt of the report dated 19 November 2021. Also, check out the associated Macquarie warrants over the glove names below.

Negatives Are Priced in

Incoming China glove supply threatens Malaysian manufacturers’ market share. However, MQ Research believes these negatives are priced in as share prices have now fallen 70-75% from pandemic highs. MQ Research believes large-cap Malaysia glove makers have a 25-35% production-cost advantage over China peers. MQ Research initiates on Malaysia’s glove manufacturers as valuations turn attractive despite average selling prices (ASP) in flux. All three glove makers in MQ Research’s coverage are trading at an enterprise value per share (EV/share) below pre-pandemic levels. If shares decline a further 10-15% - which MQ Research believes to be the absolute bottom – MQ Research sees an attractive entry point. ASPs are quickly declining (currently US$35-40 vs. mid-21 US$85-90 per ‘000 pieces), and MQ Research’s top pick Kossan’s differentiated product mix shields it from potential global oversupply. Kossan is trading at a steep discount to peers (post-pandemic PER discount to TopG/Hartalega of ~15%/ 50%) and at about half their pre-pandemic EV/share.

Production cost advantage over China/new entrants

China: MQ Research estimates that China glove manufacturers currently have 25-35% higher production costs vs. large-scale Malaysia manufacturers due to higher fuel and labour costs. If global oversupply occurs, and prices continue to decline, MQ Research believes Malaysian large-scale manufacturers will be the last to turn unprofitable. However, MQ Research expects China producers to continue to add capacity until costs normalise despite downward pressure on margins.

New entrants: MQ Research expects newer entrants in glove manufacturing to quickly become unprofitable as ASPs dive below production cost. Newer glove producers have an estimated production cost of US$35-40 per ‘000 pieces (vs. existing players of US$20-23). MQ Research believes newer players will either abandon expansion plans or exit the industry altogether.

Post-pandemic Supply-demand Outlook

Frost & Sullivan expects disposable glove demand to deliver a 15.9% volume compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) post-pandemic (2019-2025F) vs. 8.2% pre-pandemic due to increased hygiene awareness. MQ Research forecasts China producers to account for 24% of global supply post-pandemic (2023E) vs. 10% pre-pandemic (2019). MQ Research expects long-term ASPs to settle at US$24-26 per ‘000 vs. street estimates of US$25-30 on increased price pressure from China manufacturers. This is structurally higher than pre-pandemic prices of US$20-22 due to higher social compliance costs.

Valuations are now compelling; Kossan is MQ Research’s top pick

MQ Research uses a price-earnings ratio (PER) methodology to value glove manufacturers, applying MQ Research’s target multiples to post-pandemic FY23E/24E earnings per share (EPS) – years when MQ Research expects ASPs to stabilise. MQ Research’s multiples of 15x-21x represent between a -1.0SD to -0.25SD discount to pre-pandemic sector/company historical averages. Post-pandemic ASP uncertainty and labour practice issues linger. MQ Research’s order of preference is Kossan (OP) > Hartalega (OP) > Top Gloves (N).

12-month Target Price Methodology

  • TOPG MK: RM2.60 based on a PER methodology
  • HART MK: RM6.30 based on a PER methodology
  • KRI MK: RM2.70 based on a PER methodology

Source: Macquarie Research - 22 Nov 2021

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Chart Stock Name Last Change Volume 
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KOSSAN 1.81 -0.04 (2.16%) 3,602,700 
HARTA 5.58 -0.02 (0.36%) 2,121,500 

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