KUALA LUMPUR (May 19): Gold and jewellery brand Tomei Consolidated Bhd has recently expanded its retail stores into east coast areas, and is now eyeing to launch a few more stores in locations with less jewellery supply.
The group’s managing director Datuk Ng Yih Pyng said the company, which has a total of 57 stores in Malaysia to date, will continue to focus on the good potential of the Malaysian market.
“We have opened a retail store in Langkawi in April and also in Mydin Tunjung in Kelantan. We are expecting to open another two or three stores before the end of this year.
“In the meantime, we are assessing a few locations that we have yet to confirm,” Ng said at a press conference after Tomei’s annual general meeting (AGM) on Thursday (May 19).
Ng said the average cost of opening a new store would be RM5 million.
The company’s AGM saw all its resolutions passed including declaring a first and final single tier dividend of three sen per ordinary share for its financial year ended Dec 31, 2021.
Meanwhile, Ng confirmed that Tomei's precious metals arm YXPM is due to be listed on Bursa Malaysia by end of June.
“We have secured all the necessary approvals and we are going to launch the prospectus soon. Hopefully, after the listing of YXPM, the manufacturing and distribution of business will expand further.
"We will still focus a lot on Malaysia as we see a lot of potential in this market,” he said.
He added that Tomei has seen positive market sentiment with the influx of Indonesian and Singapore tourists in Malaysian shopping malls after the reopening of the country's borders.
He said the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) RM10,000 special withdrawal scheme before the Hari Raya celebration had also helped to boost market spending.
“It has always been a culture for Muslims to buy some jewellery before and after Hari Raya. Of course, the withdrawal is a spending ticket but I am sure that they will buy it even without the EPF withdrawal.
“[As] this is the first time that they can travel home in the last two years, they will take the opportunity to go back and make purchases for their family members,” Ng said.
In relation to the effect on sales from the weakening of the Malaysian ringgit against the US dollar, he said it is mitigated by the slight weakening of gold price in US dollar.
Commenting on the potential higher cost of procuring the precious metal, Ng said the cost will be passed on to consumers.
“If the cost goes up then we will increase the price. It works the other way as well,” he said.
And in terms of his forecast for gold and jewellery sales in the whole of this year, Ng said Tomei remains cautious with the ongoing war in Ukraine and the labour issues faced in Malaysia which indirectly impact its industry.