Sime Darby to acquire NZ's Caterpillar dealership

KUALA LUMPUR: Sime Darby Bhd's subsidiary Sime Darby (NZ) Holdings Ltd has entered an agreement to acquire the company that owns New Zealand's Caterpillar dealership from Gough Holdings Ltd for NZ$211mil (about RM572mil).

In a statement issued today, Sime Darby said the acquisition target, Gough Group Ltd, has one of the oldest Caterpillar dealerships outside of the US as well as transport and materials handling businesses in New Zealand and Australia.

In 2018, Gough Group grew its revenue by more than 18% to NZ$540mil from the previous year due to improvements in sales both its business segments.

The deal is pending approval of New Zealand’s Overseas Investment Office and other typical completion conditions, and is expected to be completed by Sept 30, 2019.

“The Gough Group transaction, which would be the largest for Sime Darby Berhad since the pure play restructuring exercise in 2017, provides a rare opportunity for us to enhance our relationship with Caterpillar, and gain exposure to the construction and forestry sectors in New Zealand, further reinforcing Sime Darby Industrial’s footprint in the Asia Pacific region.

“The Gough Group’s transport and material handling portfolio will complement Sime Darby Motors’ commercial truck business in New Zealand, enable growth in aftersales operations and broaden our suite of franchises, essentially strengthening our position in Australasia,” said Sime Darby group CEO Datuk Jeffri Salim Davidson.

According to the group, the transaction will be fully funded by bank borrowings, on a cash-free and debt-free basis.

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