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Thai billionaire's property shares steady after IPO

Listing of Asset World boosts Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi's wealth by 20%

Bangkok

THAI billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi boosted his wealth by about a fifth as his property unit began trading on the stock exchange after the country's biggest initial public offering (IPO) in more than four years.

Asset World Corp, a developer of hotels, shopping malls and office buildings, traded at 6.05 baht on its debut, compared with its IPO price of 6 baht.

The listing of the company with a market value of 187 billion baht (S$8.47 billion) raised his net worth by 100.4 billion baht to 605.3 billion baht as at Thursday afternoon in Bangkok, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Mr Charoen has boosted his investments and acquisitions in Vietnam, Singapore, Myanmar and Thailand to expand his business empire ranging from beer, hotels, warehouses and even the Starbucks franchise. Asset World has raised 48 billion baht from the share sale to expand its hotel and other commercial property projects.

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Mr Charoen also controls three publicly traded companies listed in Singapore - Fraser & Neave, Frasers Property and Thai Beverage. His venture in May announced the buyout of Starbucks's Thai operations.

Asset World had total revenue of 5.84 billion baht in the first six months of 2019, down from 6.52 billion baht in the same period a year earlier, according to its filing.

Net income in the first half rose to 366.7 million baht from 167 million baht a year earlier. The company had total assets of 92.4 billion baht as at June 30. BLOOMBERG

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