Off-Market Trades: Asia Media Group, Sapura Energy, INIX Technologies Holdings, United Malacca

This article first appeared in Capital, The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on February 4, 2019 - February 10, 2019.
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ON Jan 25 and 28, some 10 million of Asia Media Group Bhd shares changed hands in direct off-market transactions totalling RM1.5 million or 15 sen per share. The deals were at a 9.1% discount to the counter’s opening price of 16.5 sen on Jan 25 but the share price trended lower to close at 15 sen that day before recovering to 15.5 sen on Jan 28. At the time of writing, no announcement had been made on the parties involved in the off-market transactions.

However, it is worth noting that Wong SK Holdings Sdn Bhd, a private vehicle of the group’s founder and CEO, Datuk Wong Shee Kai, had been reducing its stake in the company since the end of last year. On Dec 20, Wong SK Holdings disposed of 12 million shares in an off-market transaction. On Jan 9, it sold 12 million shares, reducing Wong’s shareholding in Asia Media to 9.5% (he held a 27.4% stake on April 2 last year). Filings with Bursa Malaysia show that Chow Zee Neng acquired the 24 million shares from Wong SK Holdings, making him the single largest shareholder of Asia Media with a 17.5% stake.

Sapura Energy Bhd saw 210.8 million of its shares, or a 3.52% stake, being traded in direct off-market transactions for a total of RM53.8 million or an average of 25.5 sen per share. Bloomberg data shows that the transactions were done in three tranches on Jan 29.

The transactions were done at a discount of 5.6% to that day’s closing price of 27 sen, which was a record low. It is worth noting that the oil and gas support service provider’s rights shares, warrants and Islamic redeemable, convertible preference shares (RCPS-i) started trading on the same day.

While Sapura Energy has managed to raise about RM4 billion from its rights and warrants issue that closed on Jan 16, the rights were undersubscribed due to the unstable market that affected investor sentiment.

At the time of writing, no announcement had been made on the parties involved in the off-market direct transaction.

Meanwhile, INIX Technologies Holdings Bhd saw some eight million of its shares, or a 3.09% stake, traded off market for a total of RM850,000, or an average of 10.6 sen apiece, on Jan 24. Bloomberg data shows that the shares were crossed in two tranches, the first two million shares at 11 sen apiece and the remaining six million at 10.5 sen apiece.

Both tranches were traded at a premium to INIX’s closing price of 10 sen that day. Parties involved in the transactions were unknown at the time of writing.

Over at United Malacca Bhd, some 6.4 million shares, or a 3.06% stake, were traded in an off-market direct transaction for RM39.1 million, or RM6.10 apiece, on Jan 29. The price was at a 10.9% premium to its closing price of RM5.50 that day.

It is worth noting that United Malacca has not been trading at more than RM6 since September last year. At the time of writing, the parties involved in the off-market direct deal were unknown.

The company, which slipped into the red during the first two quarters of its financial year ending April 30, 2019, recently entered into three agreements to dispose of several pieces of plantation land in Melaka and Negeri Sembilan with an aggregate land area of about 1,021.06ha for RM175.15 million.

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