Malaysian realty player Aspen Group launches Catalist IPO, targets $26.8m raise

Image from Aspen Group website.

Malaysia-based property development group Aspen Holdings Limited – which develops affordable residential and mixed development properties for middle-income mass market purchasers – has launched its initial public offer (IPO) on the Catalist board of the SGX, targeting to raise S$36.72 million ($26.8 million).

The company will issue 173.27 million new shares for subscription by the public and institutional investors.  The issue, which opened on July 19, closes on July 26, 2017.

PrimePartners Corporate Finance Pte. Ltd. is the full sponsor, issue manager, joint underwriter and joint placement agent for this IPO. The joint underwriter and joint placement agent for the IPO is CIMB Securities (Singapore) Pte. Ltd., while RHB Securities Singapore Pte. Ltd. is the sub- placement agent.

Dato’ Murly, Executive Director, President and Group CEO of Aspen, said, “The listing will further raise Aspen’s profile as we forge ahead with our growth plans…Aspen is poised to take on new challenges in new locations, by envisioning mixed-development projects and initiating strategic ventures.”

Aspen will use S$25 million of the net IPO proceeds to buy land banks, S$2 million on loan repayment and S$9.72 million as working capital.

The firm has grown its gross profits in the last few month. As it only commenced its property development activities in the financial year (“FY”) ended 31 December 2015, there was no revenue recognised in FY2014.

Aspen achieved revenue of RM52.51 million, following the commencement of sales and construction of Tri Pinnacle and Vervéa in FY2015. In FY2015, Tri Pinnacle achieved 41.08 per cent of total units sold, while Vervéa accomplished 69.32 per cent of total units sold.

In FY2016, the Group achieved revenue of RM99.65 million, mainly attributable to an increase in construction activities and a higher percentage of units sold for both Tri Pinnacle and Vervéa. Tri Pinnacle was 78.77 per cent sold, whereas Vervéa was 82.95 per cent sold in FY2016.

Aspen Group financials

Putrajaya has introduced several policies in the 2017 budget to alleviate the shortage of affordable homes and promote affordable home ownership to a targeted group of Malaysians, including low- to middle-income Malaysians, youths entering the labour market, first-time owners and civil servants.

Some of these measures include a total stamp duty exemption for first-time home buyers purchasing homes valued up to RM300,000 from 1 January 2017 to 31 December 2018, higher housing loans for civil servants and construction of civil servants housing that will be sold at a considerable discount to market price.

These policies favour construction companies and developers in Malaysia and are likely to spur development projects and boost property investments.

The launch of Penang’s third satellite city, Batu Kawan, is also expected to offer commercial entities with the opportunity to develop large-scale projects that would not otherwise be possible on Penang Island.

Commenting on these prospects, Dato’ Murly said, “The property development industry is constantly changing. We are excited by the potential demand for quality affordable residential and mixed development properties, supported by the Government’s initiatives and the development plans for Batu Kawan. With our experience, capabilities and established business relationships with our joint venture and strategic partners, we believe Aspen Group is well-positioned to benefit from this trend.”

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Singapore Reporter/s

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.