19 January 2018
Malaysian construction and property company WCT Holdings is seeking to list a real estate investment trust by end-2018, with assets that could top 2 billion ringgit ($505.24 million), a person familiar with the matter said.
The company plans to establish a REIT and park several assets under the trust. WCT's current assets include three shopping complexes, two hotels and one office tower. The company also owns concessions to operate highways in India and a shopping mall in klia2, Malaysia's main low-cost airport terminal.
WCT has yet to mandate an investment bank to arrange the IPO although the company has been in talks with potential advisers, the person who didn't wish to be identified, told Nikkei Markets.
"Listing of the REIT is mainly an exercise to monetize some of the company's assets and reduce its gearing levels," the person said. "If the REIT is successfully listed, gearing levels could drop by about 20%."
WCT's plan to list the REIT has been delayed since 2016, although the company secured initial approval from the capital markets regulator. The company pushed back the initial public offering to focus on other debt reduction initiatives including two share placement exercises.
The company has raised 177.81 million ringgit from the sale of 100.46 million shares and has set aside 61.2% of the proceeds toward working capital and 37.7% for repaying debt. The balance will go towards placement expenses.
It also plans to raise up to 242.2 million ringgit by issuing 140 million new shares to investors. WCT will use 100 million ringgit to partly repay bank borrowings, and the remainder will go to fund ongoing projects and cover placement expenses.
Shares of WCT are currently trading at 1.2% higher at 1.67 ringgit apiece.
Original Source: asia.nikkei.com
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