SINGAPORE — Singapore billionaire Oei Hong Leong is set to acquire a substantial stake in SGX-ST Mainboard-listed A-Smart Holdings Ltd as he sees growth opportunities in ASEAN-bound Timor-Leste.
Under the proposed placement, A-Smart — a multifaceted solution provider operating mainly in the areas of print manufacturing, smart technologies, real estate, and investment — will raise in total, gross proceeds of $5.37 million through the issuance of 29,812,473 new ordinary shares to Oei.
At $0.18 per share, the issue price translates to a 50% premium to A-Smart’s closing price of $0.12 on 6 December 2022.
The new ordinary shares to be issued will be subjected to a 2-year moratorium starting from the share issuance date.
The amount of new ordinary shares to be issued represent 20 per cent of A-Smart’s existing share capital or 16.67 per cent of its enlarged share capital.
Listed by Forbes as Singapore’s no. 22 richest person with an estimated asset value of $2 billion, Mr Oei, 74, made his fortune through a corporate bond portfolio and real estate assets.
Commenting on the rationale of this investment, Mr Oei said, “The young and resource-rich economy of Timor-Leste has been on my radar for some time. With the country’s eventual admission into ASEAN, I believe it will trigger a sustained period of economic expansion. Hence, A-Smart is identified as an ideal candidate given its groundwork established in Timor-Leste’s property market from as early as 2017.”
Through a 69 percent-owned consortium, A-Smart is set to commence construction activities later this month for a mixed-use development in Dili, the capital city of Timor-Leste. The project has an estimated gross development value of US$85 million.
Beyond that, the Group has another strategic plot of land in the country set aside for a highrise mixed development in the future, as well as a memorandum of understanding signed with a prominent local real estate company, Dili Development Co. LDA to jointly develop a seafront resort in the capital city.
Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of A-Smart, Lim Huan Chiang added: “The proposed placement brings a twofold benefit to A-Smart, one being the fresh capital to fund our working capital needs of property development projects in Timor Leste.
Other than that, the inclusion of a prominent businessman in Mr Oei Hong Leong as a strategic investor is much welcomed as he brings years of experience and an extensive business network to the equation.”
The proposed placement, when completed, will result in a transfer of controlling interest to Mr Oei and will require shareholders’ approval at an extraordinary general meeting to be convened.