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INSIDE INSIGHTS

Multiple stocks commence buybacks; CJE completes placement

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Mr Zhong, who is also executive chairman of UEL, has gradually increased his stake in UEL from 33.59 per cent at the end of 2017.

FOR the first five months of 2018, the Straits Times Index (STI) generated a 2.5 per cent total return, compared to the Nikkei 225, Hang Seng and S&P/ASX 200 averaging a 1.2 per cent return, while the Dow Jones has declined 0.1 per cent, in SGD terms.

For the four trading sessions ended May 31, the STI generated a 2.8 per cent decline in total return, with the three regional benchmarks averaging a 0.6 per cent decline in total return.

The month of May was a contrast to April's performance, with net selling by Institutions totalling S$1.1 billion in May, with approximately two-fifths of the net selling focused in the financial sector.

Share buybacks

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The four sessions saw share buyback consideration maintain its momentum, totalling S$45.8 million, following S$41.1 million for the preceding week.

CapitaLand again led the tally, buying back 6.7 million shares for a consideration of S$23.8 million.

Yangzijiang Shipbuilding (Holdings) commenced on May 30, its share buyback mandate which had been approved on 27 April.

The globally-leading China-based shipbuilder based in China repurchased 5,000,000 shares from the open market for S$4.5 million.

Singapore Press Holdings commenced its buyback mandate which was approved back on Dec 1, repurchasing 800,000 shares for a consideration of S$2.1 million.

Straco Corporation's repurchase of 725,000 shares also initiated its mandate approved on April 27.

CSE Global repurchased another 1.8 million shares after commencing its mandate back on May 24.

Director and substantial shareholder transactions

The four sessions saw 54 primary-listed stocks lodge 156 changes in director interests or substantial shareholders' transactions.

There were 32 director acquisitions and one disposal filed, while substantial shareholders filed 13 acquisitions and three disposals.

On May 28, China Jinjiang Environment Holding Company (CJE) completed the placement of 214 million new ordinary shares in the capital of the company to Harvest Global Dynamic Fund SPC, which was acting on behalf of and for the account of Harvest Environmental Investment Fund SP.

The issue price of S$0.50 per subscription share brought the consideration of the subscription agreement to S$107 million.

The placement took Ping An Insurance (Group) Company of China Ltd's deemed stake in CJE to 14.91 per cent.

CJE is scheduled to go ex-dividend on June 5, paying a 5.1 cent dividend per share for its FY17 (ended December 2017).

Between May 24 and 25, Yanlord Land Group founder chairman and CEO Zhong Sheng Jian purchased 7,128,700 shares of the stock for a consideration of S$12 million.

Mr Zhong, who is responsible for the overall management and strategy development of the group, increased his stake in the stock from 69.43 per cent to 69.80 per cent.

Mr Zhong also serves as the executive chairman of United Engineers (UEL).

Between May 24 and 28, Yanlord Perennial Investment (Singapore) Pte Ltd (YPIL) acquired 638,100 shares of United Engineers (UEL) for a consideration of S$1.8 million.

This took the deemed UEL interest of Mr Zhong, to 34.10 per cent. Mr Zhong has gradually increased his stake in UEL from 33.59 per cent at the end of 2017.

On May 24, Sino Grandness Food Industry Group chairman and CEO Huang Yupeng acquired 500,000 shares for a consideration of S$110,450, increasing his direct interest in the company to 35.95 per cent.

Also on May 24, Haw Par Corporation executive and non-independent director Han Ah Kuan sold 40,200 shares of the stock for a consideration of S$545,044. This reduced his stake in the stock from 0.065 per cent to 0.047 per cent.

On May 25, UOL Equity Investments Pte Ltd acquired 80,000 shares of United Industrial Corporation (UIC) for a consideration of S$260,377 at an average price of S$3.25471 per share.

This took the total stake in UIC held by its chairman, Wee Cho Yaw, to 49.8581 per cent.

Tuan Sing Holdings

On May 24, Lim Tek Siong and his spouse Go Giok Lian transferred their Tuan Sing Holdings (Tuan Sing) shares, to Nuri Holdings (S) Pte Ltd.

The married deal consisted of a total of 82,430,700 shares and a consideration of S$35,865,598.

This saw Nuri Holdings (S) Pte Ltd increase its direct stake in Tuan Sing from 46.03 per cent to 52.98 per cent.

By virtue of their interests in Nuri Holdings (S) Pte Ltd, Tuan Sing Holdings CEO William Nursalim alias William Liem and non-independent and non-executive director Michelle Liem Mei Fung have increased their deemed interest in the stock to 52.98 per cent.

Aside from Mr Liem and his sister, Ms Liem, former Tuan Sing Holdings executive director Tan Enk Ee also maintains an interest in Nuri Holdings (S) Pte Ltd.

Tuan Sing is an investment holding company with interests mainly in property development, property investment and hotel ownership.

Tuan Sing reported revenue of S$76.5 million in its Q1FY18 (ended March 31), a year-on-year (yoy) increase of 2 per cent, mainly attributable to higher revenue recorded in the industrial services segment.

The increase of net profit attributable to shareholders for Q1FY18 by 53 per cent yoy to S$8.2 million was mainly due to a one-off S$3.9 million gain on divestment of a subsidiary in China.

The Hour Glass

On May 28, The Hour Glass' executive chairman Henry Tay Yun Chwan acquired 9,981,700 stocks of the company for a consideration of S$6,587,922.

This increased Dr Tay's total stake in the company from 61.682 per cent to 63.097 per cent.

Dr Tay has been the executive chairman of the leading specialist luxury watch retailer since October 1987 and served as an executive director since August 1979.

On May 22, The Hour Glass reported that its FY18 (ended March 31) revenue amounted to S$691.6 million while profit after taxation rose 2 per cent yoy to S$50.7 million.

In its outlook, management noted that it will continue operating its 38 boutiques in 10 key cities throughout the Asia-Pacific region while working to improve its retail network, brand portfolio and customer engagement and experience.

CITIC Envirotech

On May 25, CITIC Envirotech (CEL) non-executive director Lin Yucheng acquired 1.08 million shares of the company for a consideration of S$724,680.

This followed his acquisition of 1.2256 million shares for a consideration of S$823,320 on May 24.

These transactions increased Dr Lin's direct CEL interest to 0.35 per cent and total CEL interest to 3.96 per cent.

He maintains a deemed interest in the CITIC Envirotech shares held by Green Resources Limited.

The transaction followed his re-designation as a non-executive director of the group with effect from June 1, 2018.

Dr Lin was the founder of CEL and had previously held the position of CEO since the company's inception in 2003.

On May 22, CEL announced that Dr Lin indicated his intention to step down as the CEO of the group for personal reasons.

The company noted that while Dr Lin will not be overseeing the day-to-day operations of the group, he will remain as non-executive director and will be appointed adviser to serve CEL with his unique insights and inspiration.

Hao Weibao, executive chairman of CEL has succeeded Dr Lin as the company's new group CEO.

CEL is a membrane-based integrated environmental solutions provider specialising in water and wastewater treatment, water supply and recycling.

On April 25, CEL reported a 145 per cent yoy increase in its net profit for Q1FY18 (ended March 31) to S$41.7 million.

At the same time, revenue grew 133 per cent yoy to S$259.2 million.

As at March 2018, CITIC Limited was deemed to maintain a 62.91 per cent stake in CEL, with CRF Envirotech Co Ltd maintaining a direct 23.55 per cent stake.

  • The writer is the market strategist at Singapore Exchange (SGX). To read SGX's market research reports, visit sgx.com/research.