Shares in Hong Kong-based publisher and organiser Global Sources reached a 52-week high yesterday (6 August) after the company released its latest results, including plans to introduce a robot to greet international trade show visitors.
"We are pleased with the continued strength of our exhibition business and are excited by the innovations planned for our October shows," executive chairman Merle Hinrich told investors.
"To greet overseas buyers, we plan to introduce Sonia, the world's first customer service trade show robot," Hinrich said.
He also outlined plans to add experience zones for drones, electronic personal transporters and smart homes.
Global Sources shares peaked at $8.49 on the NASDAQ one day after the company reported first-half 2015 revenue of $85.9m, down from $87.5m in 2014.
It posted a pre-tax profit of $18.39m, up from $8.49m for the same period last year.
Global Sources' unaudited results reflect six months focused on capital raising, with the sale of its majority stake in eMedia Asia to organiser UBM for about $9m, as well as a deal to sell its 50th-floor Shenzhen office for about $21.7m.
Meanwhile, the company closed its share buyback tender on 27 July, after receiving about 12.6 million properly tendered shares.
Chief financial officer Connie Lai told investors the company expected about 52 to 54 per cent of its revenue would come from exhibitions in the second half of 2015, compared to 52 per cent in 2014.
Commenting on the company's growth in the second quarter, Lai said the results reflected the sale of eMedia Asia, growth in its April electronics trade shows and the shift of its SIMM machinery shows from the first-quarter of 2014 to the second quarter of 2015.