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Keppel T&T exits Thai associate for 827.6m baht; Floatel forbearance pact extended

THE logistics and data centre arm of Keppel Corp is divesting its 24.01 per cent equity interest in Thailand-listed Business Online Public Company Limited (BOL) for about 827.6 million baht (S$36 million) in cash.

Keppel Telecommunications & Transportation will sell a 20 per cent stake to CTOS Holdings Sdn Bhd and the other 4.01 per cent stake to Min Intanate. The latter is a director of BOL, according to the Thai company's website.

The consideration took into account the historical volume-weighted average prices of BOL shares, said Keppel in a bourse filing on Monday after market close.

The conglomerate added that the market value represented by the shares sold was about 1.2 billion baht as at Oct 9.

Bangkok-based BOL provides business verification support services, such as company information research and business analysis, according to Bloomberg.

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The divestment is in line with Keppel's Vision 2030 and plans to monetise non-core assets and seek new growth opportunities.

The stake sale is expected to take place in the fourth quarter of this year.

Separately, creditors of Floatel International, an associate company of Keppel, have again extended their forbearance agreement, as well as amended it to cover nearly US$22.8 million in bond coupon payments that are coming due.

The forbearance agreement between Floatel and an ad-hoc committee (AHC) of holders of its US$400 million senior secured, first-lien 9 per cent bonds has now been extended to Oct 31, from Oct 15.

The AHC holds more than 56 per cent of the Oslo-listed bonds' outstanding amount. Aside from the first-lien bonds, Floatel also has US$75 million in second-lien 12.75 per cent bonds and is the borrower under a US$150 million term loan and US$100 million in undrawn revolving credit facilities with a syndicate of bank lenders.

Under the first-lien and second-lien bonds, Floatel is due to make coupon payments totalling close to US$22.8 million, which the company will not make at the present time, it said on Monday.

Signed in April, the forbearance agreement has been extended numerous times.

Floatel remains in negotiations with its key stakeholders, including all lenders under the credit facilities and the AHC, it noted on Monday.

The offshore accommodation provider added that the vessels that are on charter continue to operate as normal and it is business as usual for the group's operations.

Keppel shares gained S$0.06 or 1.3 per cent to close at S$4.55 on Monday.

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