PETALING JAYA: Barely a month after leaving the Selangor State Development Corp (PKNS), Datuk Othman Omar (pic) has been tapped by Singapore-listed developer Oxley Holdings Ltd to head its Malaysian operations as CEO, overseeing eight projects worth almost RM10bil in gross development value (GDV).
According to a stock exchange filing last Friday, Othman, 54, was appointed CEO of Oxley’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Oxley Holdings (M) Sdn Bhd, on March 1.
Othman, a civil engineer by training, had previously served as general manager of PKNS for five years until his contract expired on Jan 31.
Oxley, which has a market capitalisation of S$2bil (RM5.22bil), was listed on Singapore’s Catalist Market in Oct 2010 before transferring to the Mainboard in February last year.
The firm, better known for its shoebox apartments in Singapore, made headlines here in November when it bought a highly-coveted piece of land along Jalan Ampang from the Loke Wan Yat estate for some RM450mil, or a record RM3,300 per sq ft.
The prime freehold land, down the road from KLCC and sandwiched between Wisma Central and a Chinese temple, is currently occupied by Restaurant Chef Choi, Nasi Kandar Pelita and four bungalows.
Property sources told StarBiz that Oxley’s estimated RM9bil-RM10bil portfolio in Malaysia included the Jalan Ampang project with a GDV of RM2.5bil, developments in Jalan Hang Tuah and Medini Iskandar worth RM3bil and RM1bil, respectively, and others in Selangor and Penang.
Under Othman’s watch, PKNS implemented a full open tender system in 2010, which resulted in savings of RM100mil a year.
He had also inked integrity pacts with PKNS’ vendors and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, even as he sought to inject private-sector efficiency into the otherwise staid government-linked corporation (GLC).
But towards the end of his term, Othman fell out with Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim over the running of PKNS.
Before his contract expired, Othman was also removed as general manager and transferred to the state secretariat to facilitate an investigation over the controversial sacking of Parti Keadilan Rakyat deputy president Azmin Ali as a PKNS board member.
Still, sources close to Othman claim he had not been short on job offers from other GLCs and listed firms in Singapore and Malaysia.
For the six months to Dec 31, 2013, Oxley saw its net profit surge 15 times to S$275.9mil (RM720.1mil) from S$18mil (RM46.98mil) in the same period a year ago, while revenue jumped 709% to S$888.2mil (RM2.32bil) from S$109.8mil (RM286.84mil) on progress billings for various developments in Singapore.
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