salik will look to maintain those revenue growth numbers while boosting the bottom-line too. A packed final weeks of 2022 should help with that. Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News

Dubai: Higher traffic on the roads had a direct say on Dubai toll-gate operator Salik recording a 9.1 per cent increase in Q3-2022 revenue of Dh445 million, while net profit came up with Dh242 million. The year-ago net profit was Dh331 million. On a nine-month basis, profit totalled Dh1.03 billion against Dh966 million same time in 2021.

“We stand in a pole position to benefit from Dubai’s ambitious expansion plans and Salik’s growth initiatives,” said Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman, after the company announced its first results post the DFM listing, with the IPO being over-subscribed 49 times.

Salik expects to pay a dividend for H2-2022 by April  next. (The payout will be 100 per cent of net profit after setting aside for statutory reserves required by law. It expects to record a one-time statutory reserve of Dh37.5 million in H2-2022.)

On the dip in third quarter profit, Ibrahim Sultan Al Haddad, CEO, said: "The third quarter was Salik’s first as a standalone legal entity with a concession agreement with the Roads & Transport Authority. A year-on-year comparison of profitability is not indicative of performance.

We delivered strong revenue growth of 9% year-on-year during the quarter, driven by increased economic and travel activity, which resulted in strong EBITDA and net profit margin of 65.4% and 54.3%, respectively.

- Ibrahim Sultan Al Haddad, CEO

Driving up numbers in Q4-22

Total trips through Salik’s eight toll gates in Dubai increased around 11 per cent 128 million in Q3-2022 from 116 million. Revenue-generating trips shot up in sync with growth in total trips, to 97 million during July to September. The revenue-generating trips during third quarter came in 3 per cent lower than in the second ‘due to seasonality’, related to summer holidays.

The EBITDA for the last quarter was Dh291 million, generating a supremely healthy 65.4 margin. 

Between January and end September, total trips grew 15 per cent to 395 million trips, against 343 million trips a year earlier, 'driven by rapid recovery from the impact of the COVID-19, as well as growth resulting from Expo 2020'. Revenue-generating trips were higher by 16 per cent to 302 million trips from 260 million in the first nine months of 2021.

Light on capex
Salik’s cash flow from operating activities was Dh315 million in Q3-2022, 'thanks to solid traffic performance'.

Capital expenditure was minimal at Dh3 million in the first nine months of 2022, and were related to assets retained under RTA in the first six months of the year and not carried forward to Salik. Salik did not incur capital expenditures in Q3-2022 and does not foresee to undertake any major capital expenditures through the rest of this year.