FGV, Metronic Global, Halex Holdings, Uzma, Berjaya Land, Poh Huat Resources, Leon Fuat, AirAsia, Luster Industries and DRB-Hicom

KUALA LUMPUR (March 22): Based on corporate announcements and news flow today, companies that may be in focus on Thursday (March 23) may include the following: Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd, Metronic Global Bhd, Halex Holdings Bhd, Uzma Bhd, Berjaya Land Bhd, Poh Huat Resources Holdings Bhd, Leon Fuat Bhd, AirAsia Bhd, Luster Industries Bhd and DRB-Hicom Bhd.

Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) is in talks with several companies, including Chinese firms, to establish partnerships to expand its distribution networks and finance facilities.

FGV’s Chief Executive Officer Zakaria Arshad told Reuters on Wednesday that the company was looking for a partnership rather than investors, without naming any company.

"We are looking for a business partner for a long-term partnership. However if this partner wants to buy a stake on the open market, there is nothing I can do," Zakaria said.

He said FGV was "currently talking to a few Chinese companies" but that he was also eyeing India, Middle East and North Africa.

A partnership is expected to be finalised in the next one to two months, he said.

Metronic Global Bhd has terminated its joint venture (JV) with Northern Paradise Sdn Bhd to build a mixed development project with a gross development value of RM80 million, after their agreement lapsed.

Metronic said the JV agreement, dated Nov 15, 2013, lapsed after the parties failed to procure the approvals and consents from the authorities within the period provided for in the agreement. The slowdown in the property market was also cited as a factor.

It added that the licence to develop the said development project could not be obtained on time.

Halex Holdings Bhd has received a conditional mandatory general offer from Waras Dinamik Sdn Bhd and Datuk Ong Soon Ho to acquire all the remaining ordinary shares in Halex not held by them at 64 sen per share in cash.

The offer price is 4.5% below today’s closing of 67 sen.

The MGO came after Waras Dinamik acquired an additional 26.12 million Halex shares or a 24.56% stake through direct business transactions at the price between 60 sen and 62 sen today, following which Waras Dinamik’s shareholding in Halex rose to 39.16%.

Uzma Bhd has been awarded a contract for the provision of fishing equipment and services by Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd.

The contract, which was awarded to Uzma's subsidiary Uzma Engineering Sdn Bhd, will run for a two-year period from February 2017 with an extension option of one year for fishing services across Petronas Carigali's area of operations.

Berjaya Land Bhd (BLand) posted a net profit of RM33.77 million for its third financial quarter ended Jan 31, 2017 (3QFY17), against RM21.02 million in net losses a year ago.

A higher share of profit from its associate companies, especially Berjaya Kyoto Development (S) Ltd from the sale of residences, and lower finance costs in the quarter were also cited as contributing factors.

Quarterly revenue climbed 3.8% to RM1.53 billion from RM1.48 billion a year ago.

Poh Huat Resources Holdings Bhd has declared a dividend of two sen per share, following 25% growth in net profit in the first financial quarter ended Jan 31, 2017 (1QFY17) to RM17.67 million, from RM14.14 million in the same period last year.

Poh Huat attributed its better performance to higher turnover, besides a one-off gain from investment disposal of RM435,000, and a recognised foreign exchange (forex) gain of about RM93,000, compared with forex losses of RM2.58 million in the previous corresponding quarter.

Its quarterly revenue climbed 8% to RM163.46 million, from RM151.06 million a year ago.

Leon Fuat Bhd has been offered a total of RM45.84 million by the government for the compulsory acquisition of the plots of land it owns in Sungai Besi.

Leon Fuat said it had received the Form H from the Land Administrator of Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur on its notice of award of compensation in respect of the compulsory acquisition, which is subject to the acceptance of the company.

AirAsia (India) Ltd (AAI), a 49%-owned associate of AirAsia Bhd, has lodged a police report in India over what it termed as "irregular personal expense claims and certain company charges" by a "certain former personnel".

AirAsia said AAI filed the police complaint with the competent authorities in Bengaluru, Karnataka, India, on Nov 9 last year. The company did not explain why it was only making the disclosure four months after the actual event occurred.

Luster Industries Bhd is planning to undertake a private placement of new shares representing up to a 10% stake in the company to raise as much as RM27.11 million to fund its property development expenditure and working capital.

In a filing today, Luster said it intends to place the shares to independent third-party investors to be identified later.

Geely Automobile Holdings’ president, An Conghui, has confirmed that Geely has withdrawn its bid to buy a controlling stake in Malaysian carmaker Proton Holdings Bhd, which is DRB-Hicom Bhd's wholly-owned automotive unit.

According to South China Morning Post, An did not elaborate on the reasons for the decision to withdraw the bid, but Li Shufu, its chairman, had said in an interview with Bloomberg earlier this month that the Malaysian company kept changing its mind.