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Hong Kong's Li & Fung set to open up 6.6% on US$1.1b divestment
[HONG KONG] Shares of Li & Fung Ltd were set to open up 6.6 per cent on Friday after the global exporter said it would divest its furniture, beauty and sweaters businesses for $1.1 billion.
The stock was set to open at HK$4.35, the highest open since May 2016. That compared to a 0.6 per cent fall for the benchmark index.
Li & Fung said it would divest the furniture, beauty and sweaters businesses, which are still under margin pressure with declining profitability, to a consortium comprising major shareholder Fung Holdings (1937) Ltd and one of China's top private equity firms, Hony Capital.
The company said it would pay a special dividend of US$520 million to shareholders.
UBS maintains a "buy" rating on the stock, saying the divestment of a shrinking business will allow Li & Fung to improve its capital structure and to focus on growth segments.