Tuesday, September 19th, 2017


Lebanon passes oil tax law

BEIRUT, Sept 19 — Lebanon made progress in its efforts to develop a hydrocarbons industry today when lawmakers passed a petroleum tax law, as companies prepare to bid on a first round of offshore exploration licences next month. Earlier this…

Volvo Cars plans US plant expansion, doubling investment: source

STOCKHOLM, Sept 19  — Volvo Cars is doubling investment in its first US plant under construction to add a second production line at a total cost of US$1 billion (RM4.20 billion), a source with knowledge of the plans said, as the carmaker heads…

EU to propose stronger monitoring of UK financial firms after Brexit

BRUSSELS, Sept 19 — The European Commission is set to propose tomorrow stricter controls of foreign financial firms that do business in the EU, a move that would extend European regulators’ supervision over London, Europe’s biggest financial…

Cloudaron files information memorandum for LEAP

PETALING JAYA: Singapore-based cloud solutions and integration services for business enterprises Cloudaron Group Bhd became the first company to put out an information memorandum for a listing on the Leading Entrepreneur Accelerator Platform (LEAP) yesterday.

Mercury Securities Sdn Bhd is adviser, placement agent and custodian for the company, which is now seeking approval in principle from Bursa Malaysia to list on the novel market.

According to a filing with Bursa Malaysia, Cloudaron is to have an excluded issue at 11 sen a piece to raise RM5.5 million for the company, which is expected to have a market capitalisation of RM85.3 million. It will issue 6.4% of its share capital, which comes up to 50 million shares to sophisticated investors.

About 43% of the proceeds are to be used for overseas establishment costs, working capital (34.6%) and estimated listing expenses, which it quantified at RM1.2 million.

Cloudaron has RM58 million in total assets and total current liabilities of RM24.2 million. It held RM5 million cash for the financial year ended March 31, 2017. About 81% of the group’s revenue came from Singapore, Indonesia makes up 12.6% and Malaysia 6.3%.

For the financial year ended March 31, 2017, the company made a net profit of RM5.2 million, 3,818.2% higher than the RM126,000 made for the same period in financial year 2016. This was on higher gross profit from all business activities; and a 103.9% increase in other income, mainly due to reversal of bad debts and inventory write-downs as well as an increase in grant received from the Singapore government.

The group saw a 8.3% decline in revenue for the financial year 2017 however, mainly due to its focus on the provision of holistic cloud solutions, that is involving workspace transformation which generate a higher gross profit margin. Its workspace transformation business, however grew 415.3% on its venture into the Indonesian market, increased contribution from the Malaysian market, and increase in recurring revenue from licensing of software.

The company’s founder, 37-year-old Malaysian Ong Chang Jeh, is also managing director and CEO of the company, established in 2010. The company has committed to a dividend payout ratio of up to 20% of future net profits to shareholders in each financial year.

Cloudaron which caters to small and medium enterprises and large corporations is concentrated in Asean with plans to expand its footprint within the current sphere of influence. Another 10 companies are eyeing a listing on the market.

Sime Darby Property, Plantation file prospectuses with SC

PETALING JAYA: Sime Darby Property Bhd and Sime Darby Plantation Bhd have filed prospectuses with the Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) for their listings on the Main Market of Bursa Malaysia.

The demergers of Sime Darby Property and Sime Darby Plantation do not involve any securities issuance or offering as it is undertaken by way of dividend-in-specie to Sime Darby Bhd shareholders.

Earlier, Sime Darby Bhd said it was planning to conclude the spin-off exercise by the end of November. The trading and logistics segments will remain under Sime Darby Bhd.

According to Sime Darby Property’s prospectus filed today, it has existing landbank with an estimated gross development value (GDV) of RM101.1 billion.

Its property development business is complemented by two other business segments – property investment and leisure and hospitality.

Sime Darby Property owns about 16,938 acres of remaining developable landbank in the Klang Valley, Negri Sembilan and Johor, of which 10,212 acres are located within its existing 23 active townships as well as integrated and niche developments.

“These developments are estimated to generate a GDV of about RM86.5 billion. The remaining 6,726 acres of landbank are for our future development. Our developable land bank will be increased by about 1,944 acres following the completion of the Malaysia Vision Valley sale and purchase agreement,” it noted.

Sime Darby Property said within the 23 townships as well as integrated and niche developments, it has 39 ongoing property development phases with a total estimated GDV of RM5.5 billion.

For the financial year ended June 30, 2017, Sime Darby Property’s net profit declined 25.7% to RM709.1 million from RM954.76 million in the previous corresponding period.

Meanwhile, Sime Darby Plantation said it has a total landbank of 983,752 ha, of which 602,509 hais planted with oil palm, 13,454 ha with rubber and 5,613 ha with sugarcane.

It is now the world’s largest producer of certified sustainable palm oil, with around 20% market share of the world production by capacity as at July 31.

Sime Darby Plantation’s net profit jumped more than three fold to RM3.55 billion for the financial year ended June 30, against RM1 billion a year ago.

PNB puts Brisbane asset on the market

KUALA LUMPUR: Australian media reports suggest that Permodalan Nasional Bhd (PNB) has put its asset in Brisbane on the market, which could see Malaysia’s largest fund manager netting in about A$400 million (RM1.34 billion) from the potential sale.

The Australian in its report on Sept 18, said PNB is readying to put Brisbane’s Santos Place office building on the block in a move that could reap almost A$400 million.

The sale of the 35,400 sq m tower located at 32 Turbot Street will reportedly be handled by commercial real estate company Colliers International.

“The 37-storey building, developed by Nielson Properties on land previously acquired by the firm’s investment partners, was the largest post-global financial crisis property transaction in Brisbane, as well as the nation’s largest six Green-Star-rated A-grade office building at the time,” the report read.

Santos Place, acquired in 2010 for a price tag of A$290 million (RM838.19 million), was PNB’s first offshore property investment.

PNB did not respond to requests for comment as at press time.

Besides Santos Place in the land down under, PNB also owns three other properties in London, UK.

While 98% of PNB’s investments are domestic, the remaining 2% are overseas.

MyHSR, LTA to hold talks on ticket, fare collection

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s MyHSR Corp Sdn Bhd and Singapore’s Land Transport Authority (LTA) will hold discussions on the ticketing and fare collection (TFC) for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) project here on Oct 9-10, 2017.

In a joint statement today, they said firms specialising in TFC were invited to share the latest ticketing technology and developments to develop a robust TFC approach for the HSR project.

“Inputs from the discussions will be taken into consideration when MyHSR Corp and LTA structure the ticketing and fare collection ecosystem, including how the assets company and operating companies are involved in the ticketing process,” said the statement.

It said both authorities envisaged a passenger-friendly ticketing system that would incorporate the latest ticketing technology while ensuring seamless travel throughout the HSR ecosystem, taking into consideration the cross-border elements of the project as well as the separate operators for its international and domestic services.

For more details, interested parties can visit MyHSR Corp website (www.myhsr.com.my) or the LTA website (https://www.lta.gov.sg/content/ltaweb/en/featured-projects/hsr.html). – Bernama

SEB loses bid to stop Prasarana from getting new contractor for monorail job

PETALING JAYA: Scomi Engineering Bhd (SEB) has lost its bid to stop Prasarana Malaysia Bhd from appointing another contractor to complete KL Monorail fleet expansion job.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia, the company said its action has been rejected by the High Court yesterday, with costs of RM20,000.

The action by SEB was pending arbitration proceedings against Prasarana over the alleged nullification of a third supplemental contract (TSC) with respect to the Kuala Lumpur monorail fleet expansion project.

To recap, Scomi Transit Projects Sdn Bhd (STP) filed an action against Prasarana in relation to the third supplemental contract of its monorail fleet expansion contract on July 3, 2017, after receiving a letter from Prasarana stating that one of the four conditions precedent had not been fulfilled within the specified period.

Prasarana claimed that this had led to its declaration of the third supplemental contract as null and void. The Kuala Lumpur Monorail Fleet Expansion Project was initially awarded by Prasarana to STP under a contract dated June 3, 2011. The contract involves, amongst others, the upgrade of the stations and systems of the Kuala Lumpur Monorail and replaces the old trains with 12 new four-car trains, six of which have been delivered with five in successful revenue service.

The action sought to stop Prasarana from appointing a third party contractor to complete the remaining works under the third supplemental contract pending disposal of arbitration between STP and Prasarana.

SEB’s share price rose 6.9% to close at 31 sen yesterday with a total of 1.60 million shares traded. Its market capitalisation stood at RM106.01 million.

Furniture maker Wegmans Holdings to list on ACE Market

PETALING JAYA: Home furniture manufacturer Wegmans Holdings Bhd is looking to list on the ACE Market of Bursa Malaysia and will use the proceeds from its proposed initial public offering (IPO) for capital expenditure and working capital.

In a draft prospectus exposure on the Securities Commission website, the group said the bulk of the fund raised will be used for the construction of new factories for manufacturing, new management head office, showroom, as well as workers’ hostel.

Wegmans’ IPO involves the public issue of 100 million new shares, of which 25 million shares will be made available for Malaysian public, 15 million for eligible directors, employees and persons who have contributed to the group and its subsidiary’s success.

Meanwhile, the remaining 10 million shares will be made available by way of private placement to institutional and identified investors, and 50 million shares to identified bumiputra investors approved by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry.

There will also be an offer-for-sale of 50 million of existing shares via private placement.

Wegmans is involved in the design, manufacture and sale of home furniture products using a variety of solid wood and composite wood materials. Its customers are mainly wholesalers, retailers, chain stores and traders. It owns one manufacturing factory and rents another in Muar.

Most of its home furniture products are exported, and more than 90% of its revenue is from exports.

Currently, it is present in 75 countries, which include, Japan, US, Australia, Singapore, Korea, Canada, UK and other European countries.

Wegmans plans to increase its production capacity, further expand and diversify its customer base and increase its product range and develop new product designs.

For FY16, its net profit jumped 18.1% to RM15.3 million, compared with RM12.95 million in FY15. It has total assets of RM61 million and total liabilities of RM36.4 million.

Mara to produce global bumiputera entrepreneurs via GTC programme

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 19 — Majlis Amanah Rakyat (MARA) is striving to produce global Bumiputera entrepreneurs with winning products through the Gate To Global (GTG) programme. Its Chairman, Datuk Dr Awang Adek Hussin said the programme was aimed…