Ekovest fails to get shareholders nod for IWCity takeover

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KUALA LUMPUR (March 29): Ekovest Bhd said the construction, infrastructure and property company's shareholders had not approved its proposed takeover offer of Iskandar Waterfront City Bhd (IWCity) at RM1.50 a share. At the extraordinary general meeting (EGM) here today, the Ekovest shareholders who voted against the proposal accounted for 69.2% of the votes.

Ekovest told Bursa Malaysia today that 30.8% of the votes were from shareholders who had voted for the proposal.

In conjunction with the announcement, Ekovest and IWCity said in separate statements to Bursa Malaysia today that both companies' share trades have been halted since 11:25am today. Trading will resume at 2:30pm today.

Prior to the suspension, Ekovest shares were traded at RM1.02 while IWCity changed hands at RM1.22.

According to Ekovest's circular to shareholders, the company had earlier launched a takeover offer for all the shares in IWCity at RM1.50 each. Ekovest had proposed to pay RM1.50 cash for one IWCity share or undertake a share exchange on the basis of one new Ekovest share for one IWCity share.

Speaking at a press conference today following Ekovest's EGM, its managing director Tan Sri Lim Keng Cheng said: "Some shareholders said that they prefer Ekovest to focus on its existing infrastructure and construction business rather than venturing (further) into the property sector."

Lim said Ekovest's valuation is higher than IWCity's, hence, the takeover offer was deemed unattractive under a one-for-one share swap. He said Ekovest respects the shareholders' decision and that the company does not plan to make another offer for IWCity.