Sapura shareholders okay Crest buy


  • Business
  • Wednesday, 09 Apr 2003

BY JAGDEV SINGH SIDHU

SAPURA Telecommunications Bhd has obtained its shareholders’ ap- proval to proceed with the acquisition of up to 100% of Crest Petroleum Bhd. 

The proposed purchase was given the go-ahead by shareholders at an EGM yesterday, nearly three months after Sapura entered into an agreement with Renong Bhd on Jan 15 to buy a 38.56% stake in Crest for RM105.2mil or RM3.60 per share. 

Sapura will make a mandatory general offer (MGO) to acquire the remaining Crest shares at RM3.60 per share once that deal is completed. Sapura will have to pay a total of RM167.6mil for 100% of Crest. 

The purchase price of RM3.60 per share was arrived at after taking into consideration Crest's audited consolidated net tangible assets per share of RM4.56 as at Dec 31, 2001, and the earnings potential of the company. 

A decision on how the deal will be financed has not been reached yet. 

Crest has been involved in the oil and gas industry for over 20 years and is one of the largest local companies specialising in marine installations, offshore oil and gas well drilling and marine construction. 

“We have been exploring new business opportunities and when Crest became available, we felt it was a great opportunity as it fell within our diversification strategy,'' said Datuk Shahril Shamsuddin, president and chief executive officer of the Sapura group of companies.  

“We see this acquisition as the best vehicle to expand our business interests and further enhance our position in the oil and gas industry. It is our intention to position the oil and gas business as one of our core competencies together with the information communications technology (ICT) business.'' 

Demand for petroleum products is expected to grow at an average rate of 7.2% annually and that for gas at 9% per annum for the duration of the 8th Malaysia Plan, which started in 2001 and ends in 2005. 

The local petroleum industry is ex- pected to make investments of about RM61.5bil over the same period.  

“We also believe that this acquisition will offer great value to our shareholders who have placed their trust in our company and management in enhancing the capital entrusted to us,'' Shahril said. “With years of experience and expertise in the oil and gas industry, we strongly believe a company such as Crest will certainly be an asset to and create greater value for Sapura.''  

In a circular to shareholders, Sapura said the expected continued growth in demand for petroleum products and gas augured well for the prospects of the Crest group both in Malaysia and the Asia-Pacific.  

The proposed acquisition by Sapura of Renong's stake in Crest is expected to be completed by mid-April whilst the MGO is expected to be completed by September.  

The MGO is conditional upon Sa- pura, or people acting in concert with it, receiving more than 50% of Crest's voting shares. In the event the MGO fails, Sapura will return any Crest shares received pursuant to the MGO and will only retain the 38.56% Crest stake acquired from Renong. 

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