Hopewell chair­man to take firm pri­vate

Viet Nam News - - FRONT PAGE -

HONG KONG — Hopewell Hold­ings Ltd said a con­sor­tium led by its chair­man of­fered to take the Hong Kong-based prop­erty and in­fra­struc­ture group pri­vate for HK$21.26 bil­lion (US$2.7 bil­lion), send­ing its stock surg­ing as much as 32 per cent.

The deal, of­fered by Chair­man Gor­don Wu and af­fil­i­ates, will al­low share­hold­ers to exit their in­vest­ment amid in­creased mar­ket un­cer­tainty, Hopewell said, un­der­lin­ing the volatil­ity that Asian stocks are fac­ing due to trade ten­sion be­tween China and the US.

Hopewell’s shares, sus­pended from trad­ing since Mon­day, surged to HK$34.90, their high­est level in more than 11 years.

They were still trad­ing be­low the of­fer price of HK$38.8 per share, which rep­re­sents a nearly 47 per cent premium over the stock’s pre­vi­ous close.

“Given the con­tin­ued low liq­uid­ity of the shares, it is dif­fi­cult for the scheme share­hold­ers to ex­e­cute on­mar­ket dis­pos­als ef­fi­ciently with­out ad­versely af­fect­ing the mar­ket price of the shares,” Hopewell said in a fil­ing to the Hong Kong bourse late on Wed­nes­day.

The com­pany, which listed its shares in Hong Kong in 1980, also has busi­ness in­ter­ests in­clud­ing power plants, prop­erty man­age­ment, ho­tel own­er­ship and man­age­ment, restau­rant op­er­a­tions and food cater­ing.

An­a­lysts said liq­uid­ity and trad­ing in­ter­est on the stock had been low as in­vestors strug­gled to dis­cern a clear plan be­hind its wide range of busi­nesses.

“It’s mar­ket po­si­tion and fo­cus are not clear enough to many in­vestors as they are quite low-pro- file and they don’t do much to pro­mote them­selves,” said Li­nus Yip, chief strate­gist at First Shang­hai Se­cu­ri­ties.

“It is at­trac­tive to in­vestors who look for value play but not to those who are con­cerned about fund flow that makes it easy for them to buy and sell.”

The con­sor­tium, which owns 36.9 per cent of the com­pany, of­fered to buy all out­stand­ing 547.85 mil­lion shares, or 63.1 per cent of the is­sued share cap­i­tal it does not al­ready own, for HK$38.8 per share in cash. — REUTERS

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