Tuesday, September 5th, 2017

 

FGV: Panel’s decision to be out next week

PETALING JAYA: The domestic inquiry proceedings on Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd’s (FGV) group president and CEO Datuk Zakaria Arshad resumed today and a decision is expected by early next week.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia today, FGV said the independent domestic inquiry panel is expected to deliver its decision by early next week, as one of the panel members had to leave on an official trip overseas today.

Zakaria and group CFO Ahmad Tifli Mohd Talha will continue to be on leave of absence while Datuk Khairil Anuar Aziz and Aznur Kama Azmir will continue to serve as officer-in-charge and interim group CFO respectively, until further notice from the board of directors.

Recall that Zakaria, Ahmad Tifli and two others namely FGV Trading Sdn Bhd CEO Ahmad Salman Omar and Delima Oil Products Sdn Bhd senior general manager Kamarzaman Abd Karim were referred to a domestic inquiry for alleged breach of procedures at Delima Oil Products, a subsidiary of FGV.

The domestic inquiry began on July 18, during which the independent panel reviewed the answers submitted by Zakaria and Ahmad Tifli in response to show-cause letters issued to them earlier.

FGV acting chairman Tan Sri Dr Sulaiman Mahbob had told reporters last month that the board expected a report from the panel by end of August, after which it would decide on its next plan of action.


LBS subsidiary buys mall operator for RM12 million

PETALING JAYA: LBS Bina Group Bhd’s wholly-owned subsidiary Saujana Tunggal Sdn Bhd (STSB) has acquired the entire 100% equity interest in Gerbang Mekar Sdn Bhd (GMSB), owner and operator of a retail mall known as M3 Mall in Gombak, Kuala Lumpur for RM12 million.

STSB today entered into a share sale agreement (SSA) for the acquisition of GMSB from Jadi Wawasan Sdn Bhd (JWSB) and Chua Choon Yang.

Constructed on 3.2 acres of leasehold land, M3 Mall is part of a larger mixed development project known as “Medan Mega Melati”, which includes the M3 Residency, a two block 16-storey service apartment built atop the mall completed in the first-quarter of 2016.

The M3 Mall is valued at RM107 million by Raine & Horne International Zaki + Partners Sdn Bhd as at Aug 4, 2017. This retail mall is positioned as an “Everyday Mall” that provides necessities to the community living in the catchment areas and targets the middle income group in the vicinity in Gombak.

The M3 Mall is charged to Kuwait Finance House (Malaysia) Bhd for a credit facility granted to GMSB.

Based on the audited financial statements of GMSB for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2016, GMSB recorded a net loss of RM5.7 million. The purchase consideration will be funded by internally generated funds.

Upon completion of the shares acquisition, GMSB will become a subsidiary of the group and would enable LBS to consolidate the future earnings to be generated from STSB and GMSB. The shares acquisition is expected to be completed in last quarter of 2017.

LBS closed 1.04% lower today at RM1.91 with 229,000 shares traded.


Prestariang acquires OpenLearning Global shares

PETALING JAYA: Prestariang Bhd’s unit Prestariang Capital Sdn Bhd has entered into a subscription agreement with OpenLearning Global Pte Ltd (OGPL) and OGPL’s founder and group CEO Adam Maurice Brimo, to venture into higher education cloud-based markets domestically and regionally.

OGPL Group owns a leading-edge cloud-based software-as-a-service platform for learning management system and massive open online courses (MOOC) known as www.openlearning.com. As part of an internal restructuring exercise pursuant to the agreement, OGPL will own two wholly owned operational subsidiaries in Australia and Malaysia.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia today, Prestariang said the agreement is for the subscription of up to five million new “A shares” and 3.07 million convertible preference shares of OGPL, which will be funded through internally generated funds and wholly satisfied in cash.

Prestariang said the investment would allow the group to leverage OGPL Group’s scalable cloud platform with over 900,000 users and to work alongside OGPL Group to establish a beach-front for EduCloud.

EduCloud is a Prestariang initiative announced earlier this year that aims to become a premium cloud-based service provider for the higher education market.

Barring any unforeseen events arising from the fulfilment of conditions set in the agreement, Prestariang said the subscription is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2018.

Its shares fell one sen to close at RM1.77 today on some 132,200 shares done.


RAM Ratings: Malaysia’s exports growth to rebound in July

PETALING JAYA: RAM Ratings expects Malaysia’s export growth to rebound to 23.1% in July, following the slower growth of 10% in June.

The rating agency said in a statement today that the pick-up was underscored by the anticipated improvement in domestic industrial output, in line with stronger demand from China, Singapore and Japan.

Similarly, RAM said the import growth is expected to accelerate to 20%, although still lagging behind exports for the third consecutive month.

RAM said this comes as domestic restocking activities continue moving towards an optimal level, thereby reducing incremental demand for imports and the need for a surge in import of intermediate and capital goods that was experienced at the beginning of the year.

In addition, it said both exports and imports will also be boosted by the low-base effect in July, arising from the year-on-year decline in July 2016.

Under this scenario, the trade surplus is projected to come in at RM4.1 billion in July 2017.

“As a crucial part of the integrated global value chain for electrical and electronic products, Malaysia – as well as other major producers such as Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan – is expected to continue benefiting from the current up-cycle for global electronic products.

“Although this positive momentum remains intact, demand is expected to moderate once inventory requirements have been fulfilled and with the current electronics growth cycle coming to an end after the release of the next wave of smartphones towards the end of 2017,” it said.

Meanwhile, RAM said mineral fuels are also expected to remain among the strong drivers of overall exports, led by sustained demand for energy to support increasing industrial activities and stabilising global oil prices.

However, RAM said the nominal growth of mineral fuel exports is expected to moderate through the next few months as Brent crude prices softened temporarily in May and June.

“Brent crude prices typically lead the mineral fuel export value index by three-four months; as price weakness kicks in, this reduces the product’s contribution to growth,” it added.


Malaysia’s MSB industry to grow by 10% this year

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s Money Services Business (MSB) industry is expected to grow by 10% to RM130.35 billion this year, up from RM118.5 billion in 2016, mainly lifted by growth in the wholesale currency business.

Malaysian Association of Money Services Business (MAMSB) president Ramasamy Veeran said the wholesale currency business is expected to increase by 40% to RM15 billion.

He was speaking at a press conference in conjunction with the Third Money Services Business Asia Pacific Conference 2017 (MAPC 2017) today.

Ramasamy said the money changing segment is also expected to advance by 10% to nearly RM80 billion this year from RM73.5 billion in 2016 and mainly supported by Malaysia’s improving tourism sector.

However, on the remittance segment, he anticipates it to fall by 7% to RM32 billion from the RM34.4 billion recorded previously. – Bernama


FGV domestic inquiry panel to deliver decision next week

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 5 — The domestic inquiry proceedings on Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) Group President/Chief Executive Officer resumed today. In a filing to Bursa Malaysia, FGV said the Independent Domestic Inquiry Panel was…


Lego to cut 1,400 staff as decade-long sales boom ends

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China’s Huawei braces for board revamp as western markets beckon

BEIJING, Sept 5 — Huawei Technologies Co will shake up its board for the first time in six years as the Chinese company prepares to push deeper into developed markets such as the US for growth. China’s largest networking gear maker will in…


Western Digital offers to exit Toshiba chip bid for better JV terms, according to sources

TOKYO, Sept 5 — Western Digital Corp has offered to drop out of a bid for Toshiba Corp’s lucrative semiconductor unit after their talks stalled, seeking instead a stronger position in the two companies’ chip joint venture, two sources said…


Western Digital offers to exit Toshiba chip bid for better JV terms

TOKYO, Sept 5 — Western Digital Corp has offered to drop out of a group bidding for Toshiba’s coveted flash memory chip business to take a stronger position in their joint venture instead, two sources familiar with the matter said today. The…