Off-Market Trades: Ipmuda Bhd, Spring Gallery Bhd, Asia Brands Bhd, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, NetX Holdings Bhd

This article first appeared in Capital, The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on February 5, 2018 - February 11, 2018.
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ON Jan 25, corporate entertainment industry veteran Datuk Sim Choo Thiam acquired 3.62 million shares or a 5% stake in Ipmuda Bhd off market at 90 sen apiece. It was an 11.11% discount to the counter’s closing price of 80 sen that day.

Sim was appointed managing director on the same day. He bought the shares from Maju Holdings Sdn Bhd, the private vehicle of businessman Tan Sri Abu Sahid Mohamed. Maju Holdings remains the single largest shareholder of Ipmuda with a 17.03% direct stake.

Abu Sahid came under the spotlight last year when he attempted to buy PLUS Malaysia Bhd from UEM Group Bhd and the Employees Provident Fund. Most of the tycoon’s holdings are privately held, but among his known assets is a concession to operate Maju Expressway, which links Kuala Lumpur to the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

While Abu Sahid remains executive chairman of Ipmuda, his son Mohd Faiq was among the directors who resigned on the same day to focus on other Maju Holdings businesses. Ipmuda is a building materials supplier and has been listed since 1993.

Last Tuesday, ceramics firm-turned-developer Spring Gallery Bhd saw five million shares or a 2.5% block sold in a single off-market deal for RM1.06 apiece. That was five sen or 4.5% lower than its closing price of RM1.11 on the same day.

The company also saw off-market transactions the week prior, where 8.84 million shares changed hands. No new shareholder had surfaced at the time of writing.

The counter has been surging of late. From 60 sen apiece on Jan 10, it rose 85% in a matter of weeks to close at RM1.11 last Thursday.

On Jan 26, Spring Gallery said its subsidiary received a letter of intent from Village Roadshow Theme Parks Pty Ltd. The LOI provides its subsidiary with the rights to develop and operate a theme park in Klebang, Melaka, on land measuring 72.35 acres. It said the rights are conditional on further feasibility studies and due diligence processes.

Retailer Asia Brands Bhd saw 7.08 million shares, amounting to 8.9% of its outstanding shares, directly sold off market in two direct transactions for 86 sen per share on Jan 30 — a slight discount to its closing price of 91 sen that day.

At the time of writing, no new substantial shareholder had surfaced at the baby products and female innerwear manufacturer. The only substantial shareholders of Asia Brands are Everest Hectare Sdn Bhd (59.71%) and Ng Tiong Seng Corp Sdn Bhd (13.10%).

Everest Hectare is the vehicle of non-executive chairman Ng Chin Huat and his wife Yap Su P’ing, while Ng Tiong Seng Corp is the Ng family’s vehicle. Among the company’s brands are Anakku and Disney Baby for baby products, and Audrey and Lilian for female innerwear.

Tenaga Nasional Bhd saw several large direct transactions done off market in the period under review. On Jan 24, a block of eight million shares crossed in a transaction worth RM126.4 million while two other transactions worth RM118.8 million and RM158.6 million each took place on Jan 29. Cumulatively, however, these three transactions only make up 0.45% of its outstanding shares.

IT services firm NetX Holdings Bhd saw 76 million shares change hands in blocks of at least 495,000 shares each via multiple direct transactions on Jan 29. The volume amounts to 3.1% of its outstanding shares and the transactions were done at 4.5 sen per share.

The transacted price marks a 12.5% premium to its four sen closing price on Jan 29. Its largest shareholder is Asiabio Capital Sdn Bhd with an 11.16% stake. Only two other shareholders have more than 2% equity interest each.

Last Tuesday, ACE Market-listed NetX closed at four sen apiece, giving it a market capitalisation of RM97.59 million. At that price, the counter is two times higher than where it was a year ago, despite having tumbled from its multiple-year high of 10 sen per share in May last year.


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