Thursday, December 15, 2011

UMW: No submission to buy Khazanah's 42.7% Proton stake

KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 15): UMW HOLDINGS BHD [] has confirmed that it had not submitted any bid to Khazanah Nasional Bhd to acquire its 42.7% stake in PROTON HOLDINGS BHD [].

'UMW also confirms that it is not in any form of discussion with any parties in this regard,' it said.

It said in a statement to BURSA MALAYSIA BHD [] that it had no knowledge of a news report on Thursday about it making a presentation to Khazanah about the Proton stake.

The news report stated that UMW, which is majority-controlled by the government's Permodalan Nasional Bhd and the Employees Provident Fund, was also the single largest shareholder of Perusahaan Otomobil Kedua Sdn Bhd, the manufacturer of Malaysia's second national car.

Market speculation has picked up pace that Khazanah was keen to sell its stake and among the names were DRB-Hicom Holdings Bhd.

Earlier, Hwang DBS Vickers Research said Khazanah's sale looked increasingly more likely, in its view.

HDBSVR said assuming Khazanah sold its 42.7% stake and not a partial interest, there might be a general offer on the cards unless exemption was given.

'We think DRB-Hicom has the financial strength as well as track record in the automotive industry to take up the exercise if a GO happens,' said the research house.

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