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Hot stock: Imperium Crown down 12.5%

SHARES in Catalist-listed real estate firm Imperium Crown fell 12.5 per cent on Wednesday, making it one of the biggest losers by percentage on the Singapore bourse for the day. 

The counter reached an intraday low of three Singapore cents, before closing at 3.5 Singapore cents, down 12.5 per cent, or 0.5 Singapore cent. Some 26.4 million shares changed hands. 

Market speculation is that there might be a substantial shareholder selling off shares, though this could not be confirmed. 

According to Imperium's latest annual report, substantial shareholders of the company include Wee Henry with a 17.36 per cent stake, Li Shanhua with a 12.67 per cent interest, Sun Xiaohui with a 10.14 per cent stake, Evercore Multi-Strategy Global with a 7.6 per cent stake which is owned by Lee Suh Mun, as well as Wong Koon Lup, with a direct and deemed stake of 8.15 per cent in the company.

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One analyst noted that there could be two possible reasons for the plunge in the counter's share price - that a large shareholder might be selling shares, or that there might be differences among people within the firm, as the company had announced some board changes earlier this year. 

The analyst added that the stock has been underperforming since its share placement in August 2017, where shares were issued at 12.5 Singapore cents apiece, and that the question is whether the company can show if its business model is still viable. 

The four investors that took part in Imperium's share placement last year included securities and fund management company Soochow Securities CSSD (Singapore), as well as Ms Li, Ms Sun, and Sino Achieve Enterprises. 

Sino Achieve Enterprises is an investment holding company owned by Imperium's substantial shareholder Mr Wong. In March this year, Mr Wong pared his personal holdings of 0.55 per cent, selling off 4.3 million shares for S$275,200, or 6.4 Singapore cents each. 

He is also tied to CW Group Holdings which is listed in Hong Kong. According to a media report last month, the precision engineering solutions provider is currently trying to restructure its debt. 

In an exchange filing on Wednesday after market close, Imperium highlighted that it is not aware of any information not previously announced concerning the company which might explain the unusual trading activity, save for preliminary discussions on a potential investment in the Wonder Stone Park, which may or may not materialise. 

It added that it will make further announcements on the potential investment should there be any material developments, and that the company is in compliance with the Catalist rules.