Friday, March 15th, 2019


Cyprus finance minister to step down

NICOSIA (Cyprus), March 15 — Cypriot Finance Minister Harris Georgiades, who is credited with having navigated the island through a painful 2013 EU bailout, announced today he will step down at the end of this year. Georgiades, 46, who was…

Crazy week for UK pound, a Brexit thermometer

LONDON, March 15 — The pound has experienced a chaotic week in reaction to Brexit’s twists and turns, with large swings against rival currencies a daily occurrence. Over the week the pound has jumped 1.8 per cent against the dollar and 1 per…

Wall Street rises as US-China trade talks continue

NEW YORK, March 15 — Wall Street edged slightly higher at the open today, with US stocks poised to post gains for the week as investors were comforted by continued US-China trade negotiations. The upward momentum came despite plunging economic…

Interserve to go in administration after rescue deal blocked

LONDON, March 15 — Troubled outsourcing company Interserve, one of the British government’s biggest contractors, is set to go into administration later today after its shareholders rejected a rescue plan. Interserve’s shareholders voted 59 per…

Central banks stuck in holding pattern

LONDON, March 15 — A host of central banks meet next week, but with a global economic slowdown underway alongside political and trade strife, they are unlikely to tinker much, if at all, with policy. An escalation in the US-China trade war would…

Swedbank report showed US$10b ‘suspicious’ Baltic payments, says Swedish TV

STOCKHOLM, March 15 — An internal Swedbank report in September detailed “suspicious” transactions totalling around US$10 billion (RM40.8 billion) between customers of Swedbank and Danske Bank in the Baltics from 2007 to 2015, Swedish state…

Australia, Kiwi dollars gain on China stimulus plans; pound firm

LONDON, March 15 — The dollar broadly fell against its rivals today and was on track for its biggest weekly drop in more than three months, while the Australian and the Kiwi dollars were the biggest gainers on news of more China stimulus plans….

Boustead Holdings to sell Royale Chulan Bukit Bintang Hotel for RM197m

PETALING JAYA: Boustead Holdings Bhd (BHB) is disposing of its Royale Chulan Bukit Bintang Hotel located along Jalan Bukit Bintang for RM197 million cash.

The group’s subsidiary Boustead Hotels & Resorts Sdn Bhd has entered into a sale and purchase agreement with Every Room A Home Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of Hotel Royal Ltd, for the proposed disposal, it said in a statement today.

The sale consideration was reached on a willing-buyer willing-seller basis, factoring in the fair market value of the property based on an independent professional valuation.

The group is expected to realise a total estimated gain of RM92 million upon completion of the proposed disposal, translating into approximately 4.5 sen per share.

A spokesperson from BHB said the disposal of this property forms part of the Boustead Group’s overall plan to return to profitability by way of divesting non-strategic assets.

“Weighing the prospects of maintaining the hotel, given low occupancy rates and the age of the property coupled with the increasingly competitive industry, the sale offers greater value to the group.”

“The prime location of Royale Chulan Bukit Bintang Hotel in the golden triangle of Kuala Lumpur enables us to dispose of the hotel at a premium over the net book value.

“This is indeed an attractive opportunity to enhance value for shareholders which resonates well with our business strategy,” he added.

The proposed sale is expected to be completed by mid-2019.

In a separate filing, Boustead Heavy Industries Corp Bhd (BHIC) said the government has agreed to revise the contract price between its associate company Boustead Naval Shipyard Sdn Bhd and the Defence Ministry, for the supply of four units of Littoral Mission Ship in collaboration with a Partner Shipyard in China.

BHIC said the four vessels will be built and delivered in China at a revised contract price of RM1.05 billion, from RM1.17 billion previously.

The changes will have no material effect on the earnings of BHIC Group for the financial year ending Dec 31, 2019 and its future earnings, it added.

Pestech to jointly bid for LSS project with Japanese firm

PETALING JAYA: Pestech International Bhd is collaborating with Japan-based RS Renewables K.K. to bid for large scale solar photovoltaic plants (LSS 3) in Peninsular Malaysia.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia, Pestech said its wholly owned subsidiary Pestech Power Sdn Bhd had entered into a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with RS Renewables for collaboration via a potential joint investment in the bidding for LSS 3 project.

Headquartered in Tokyo, RS Renewables is involved in the development of power plant using renewable energy source. Its track record includes solar energy power plants in Japan and globally.

It has expertise in all phases of project development such as providing design and engineering guidance to local EPC (engineering, procurement and construction), financial arrangement, operation and maintenance, and asset management.

Under the MoU, the two parties will explore the possibility of complementing each other’s core competencies and know-how, technical capabilities and joint co-operation in the undertaking of the LSS 3 project.

The two parties will enter into a legally binding joint bidding agreement in order to bid for the LSS 3 project and if successful, they will consider investing into the project via a special purpose vehicle.

The MoU is expected to contribute positively to the future earnings of the group, if the bid for the project is successful.

Pestech’s share price closed unchanged at RM1.13 on Friday with 190,400 shares done.