Petronas to float shipbuilder MMHE
Misc confirmed in a statement to the Malaysian stock exchange yesterday that it was taking steps to list MMHE, the country"s largest shipbuilder, separately. Petronas will also list the petrochemical business, the company said in a statement.
Petronas joins a slew of companies like India's Essar Group and C&C Energy Canada which this week announced plans to tap markets for new funds, as crude prices rose to their highest in 18 months, Reuters reported.
In recent years, Petronas has driven its search for reserves overseas and recently won contracts in Iraq and Venezuela. It is also involved in natural gas projects in Iran and oil exploration in Sudan, as well as working with ExxonMobil Corp in Malaysia.
Some fund managers had hoped the company would list its exploration arm, Petronas Carigali, although the listing of the petchems and heavy engineering operations is still a positive sign for the domestic bourse, they added.
"Whatever subsidiary it is, it's still a positive, because there will be more new and big names coming to the market, backed by credible parents," Jalil Rasheed, who helps manage about $2 billion at Aberdeen Asset Management Malaysia.
"Any new listing will be very good, it would be nice if the sale is about 49% Ώ to give a lot of room to investors," he said.
Petronas did not give further details on the size of the offerings.
MMHE earned more than 4 billion ringgit ($1.25 billion) in revenue in fiscal 2009 and runs one of the region's largest yards in southern Johor state near Singapore.
Prime Minister Najib Razak last month told an investment conference the government would list its stakes in two Petronas subsidiaries this year to reduce state ownership in the private sector and boost liquidity on the stock market.
Najib has also asked government investment arm Khazanah Nasional and state pension fund the Employees Provident Fund to reduce their stakes in the stock market.
"Market sentiment is quite good, there is appetite for risk taking now," said Phillip Capital chief investment officer Ang Kok Heng, referring to market demand for the initial public offerings.
Riding on increasing confidence about economic prospects in the region, Malaysia's benchmark share index hit a 25-month high this week.
Malaysia last year saw Southeast Asia's biggest IPO when top telecoms company Maxis Communications Bhd listed its Malaysian business on the local stock market in a $3.3 billion offering.