APPASIA EYES HONG KONG NEXT

Firm look­ing at a pay­ment gate­way li­cens­ing busi­ness model for HKeX

New Straits Times - - Business - JOHN GIL­BERT KUALA LUMPUR john.gil­bert@me­di­aprima.com.my

APPASIA Bhd will be look­ing at list­ing on the Hong Kong stock ex­change (HKeX) next after its en­try into the Aus­tralian Se­cu­ri­ties Ex­change (ASX) by the third quar­ter of this year.

Ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Calvert Wong Ngai Peow said AppAsia would have a dif­fer­ent busi­ness ap­proach for HKeX com­pared with its Aus­tralian model, and would take ad­van­tage of Hong Kong’s well-es­tab­lished Asian fi­nan­cial hub.

“The Hong Kong list­ing is in our plans, but we will be look­ing at it in the next three years after we have es­tab­lished a strong foot­ing in Aus­tralia.

“We tar­get to be a ma­jor player in e-mar­ket­place and mo­bile ap­pli­ca­tions in Aus­tralia by three years,” he told NST Busi­ness re­cently.

It is un­der­stood that the ACE Mar­ket-listed AppAsia will be look­ing at a pay­ment gate­way li­cens­ing busi­ness model for HKeX.

To re­cap, AppAsia Bhd last week an­nounced plans to list its on­line shop­ping busi­ness on the ASX un­der AppAsia Ltd.

The ex­er­cise would raise up to A$6 mil­lion (RM20.2 mil­lion) based on the is­sue price of A$0.20 per share.

AppAsia Ltd’s ini­tial pub­lic of­fer­ing (IPO) in­volves the pub­lic is­suance of be­tween 20 mil­lion and 30 mil­lion new AppAsia Ltd shares. The com­pany will have an en­larged paid-up cap­i­tal of up to 110.5 mil­lion shares after the list­ing.

The com­pany plans to use the pro­ceeds to ex­pand the range of prod­ucts of­fered in AppAsia eMar­ket­place in Malaysia and Aus­tralia, and ven­ture into In­done­sia and Thai­land.

Hong Kong is the world’s sec­ond most com­pet­i­tive econ­omy listed un­der the In­ter­na­tional In­sti­tute for Man­age­ment De­vel­op­ment World Com­pet­i­tive­ness Year­book, after the United States, ac­cord­ing to a re­port.

Ac­cord­ing to Thom­son Reuters, Hong Kong re­mained the world’s No. 1 list­ings mar­ket in the first nine months of last year, as IPOs from Chi­nese com­pa­nies beat the Shanghai Stock Ex­change and New York Stock Ex­change in terms of funds raised.

On po­ten­tial part­ner­ships, Wong said the com­pany did not fore­see any chal­lenges in iden­ti­fy­ing strate­gic part­ners and in form­ing a listed com­pany in Hong Kong.

“We have a proven track record and our en­try into the Aus­tralian stock mar­ket shows our com­mit­ment to en­larg­ing our prod­ucts and ser­vices foot­print within the Asean re­gion.

“We be­lieve many po­ten­tial com­pa­nies will be seeking an op­por­tu­nity to be our part­ner in Hong Kong,” he said.

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