Monday, October 10, 2011

#Update* PNB: S P Setia CEO to continue to lead

KUALA LUMPUR: Permodalan Nasional Bhd (PNB), which had served a notice of take-over offer on S P Setia Bhd on Sept 28, gave an assurance that chief executive officer Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin wouldl continue to lead the property company as its CEO.

'The existing management team will also continue to manage the company,' according to a joint statement by PNB and S P Setia on Monday, Oct 10.

Liew responded by saying on behalf of the management team that he was heartened by PNB's reassurance that it wants to work with the existing management of S P Setia.

The joint statement was issued following much concern about the fate and future direction of S P Setia after the Sept 28 takeover proposal by PNB.

It said PNB president and group CEO Tan Sri Hamad Kama Piah Che Othman met with Liew last Friday evening, Oct 7 to personally reassure him of PNB's best intentions for S P Setia which had earlier been reported in the press.

Hamad highlighted that PNB is an investment fund and its role is to look out for good companies to invest in and not to manage these companies. 'PNB recognises that there is a disconnect between S P Setia's fundamental value and its share price caused by the present global market turmoil which is why it is seeking to increase its stake in the company,' it said.

The statement said PNB 'fully appreciates the strong branding and deep embedded value which has been created in the company through its entrepreneur-led Management team'.

'Tan Sri Liew will continue to lead S P Setia as its CEO. The existing management team will also continue to manage the company with the same high professional standards and spirit of excellence which has caused S P Setia to be voted No. 1 developer in Malaysia time and again,' it said.

Hamad pointed out PNB's involvement in its investee companies is mainly through board representation, while the day-to-day operations are left to professional managers.

With regard to PNB's takeover offer, S P Setia had earlier announced that it has appointed AmInvestment Bank Bhd as the independent adviser to advise the non-interested directors and non-interested shareholders of S P Setia.

The joint statement said Liew remains committed to work closely with the non-interested directors of the board to secure the best possible outcome for all minority and non-interested shareholders.

Liew reiterated the board's advice to non-interested shareholders to wait for both PNB's offer document as well as the independent advice circular before deciding on their next move.

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