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Sias will work with all suitors to support Hyflux perp holders

THE Securities Investors Association (Singapore), or Sias, said that it is ready to work with all investors to support Hyflux preference shares and perpetual securities (P&P) holders, after a new rescue offer for the beleaguered water treatment company.

American fund manager Strategic Growth Investments (SGI) - Hyflux's fourth and most recent suitor - has proposed to buy and privatise Hyflux with an investment of some S$208 million in cash.

Said Sias president and chief executive David Gerald in a media statement: "Although the SGI term sheet is non-binding and conditional, it contains a proposal to resolve the debts due to all stakeholder groups, including the P&P holders.

"Sias' position is that it is prepared to work with any and all investors to help provide information to the P&P holders and facilitate a restructuring once a binding and unconditional offer is made in such time that the court may allow."

Under a detailed term sheet issued by SGI last week, P&P holders will get S$41.3 million in cash and a share of new convertible securities in Hyflux. Mr Gerald noted in his statement that the cash payout marks a 4 per cent recovery for the P&P holders.

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While SGI will not go ahead with its offer if Hyflux moves into judicial management, Hyflux has backed the restructuring offer, dubbing SGI a "preferred investor" and touting the "single-payment cash recovery … and participation in the company's future growth".

On top of several tranches of outstanding notes, Hyflux also owes some S$900 million to about 34,000 P&P retail investors - a longstanding sticking point in restructuring talks.

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