MMC Corp turns eyes to port assets for potential listing

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KUALA LUMPUR (May 25): MMC Corp Bhd, controlled by tycoon Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Albukhary, is considering listing its port assets after spinning off its power unit Malakoff Corp Bhd on Bursa Malaysia early this month.

"If we see good value in the future for us to look into the listing of our port (assets), then it will be considered. But no decision has been made by the board at the moment," MMC group managing director Datuk Seri Che Khalib Mohamad Noh told the press after the group's annual general meeting today.

On possible collaboration between MMC (fundamental: 1; valuation: 1.4) and NCB Holdings Bhd (fundamental: 2.05; valuation: 1.4), in which MMC Corp holds a 15.73% stake, Che Khalib said MMC would be happy to assist NCB, and aims to add value to the latter.

"We own a few ports, such as Johor Port, PTP (Port of Tanjung Pelepas) and now we are the second substantial holder in Northport (a wholly-owned subsidiary of NCB).

"If all these three ports can collaborate, we believe that we can optimise the value of all these three assets in terms of procurement, staff and expertise. We believe this collaboration can add value to all three ports," he added.

MMC, which had acquired a 15.7% stake in NCB in November last year, is the operator of PTP and Johor Port, while NCB operates Northport.

On Malakoff's lacklustre debut on the Main Market of Bursa and dampened share price performance, Che Khalib said despite the fall in share price, the company's fundamentals are still strong.

He added that Malakoff is a stable company, with a secure business.

He also noted that the successful listing of Malakoff had been positive on MMC's gearing level, lowering it to 0.5 times, from 3.2 times.

For the financial year ending Dec 31, 2015, MMC expects to match its performance last year, if not better.

Che Khalib added that the group will be putting in competitive bids for the Mass Rapid Transit Line 2 (MRT2) project.

"For MRT2, we are already in, as far as (being) a project delivery partner is concerned. With our experience in underground construction, we can put a very competitive bid to the government," he said.

As at 2.04pm, MMC shares were down 0.78% at RM2.53, while Malakoff's share price was 1.17% higher at RM1.73. NCB shares were down 0.68% at RM2.90.