Malaysian developer Iskandar Waterfront said to eye IPO next year

The KL Tower is seen, with a background of the cityscape in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Iskandar Waterfront Holdings Sdn. is considering an initial public offering as early as next year, partly to help fund the $33.5 billion Bandar Malaysia project, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The company known as IWH is working with at least one adviser for the listing that may fetch a valuation of about 30 billion ringgit ($7.2 billion), said one of the people, who asked not to be named because the information is private.

Bandar Malaysia was conceived under 1MDB, and languished when the troubled state fund struggled to finance the development amid corruption investigations. 1MDB then sought to sell a major stake in the project to developers IWH and China Railway Engineering Corp., before canceling the deal amid a dispute over payments in 2017. In April, the government gave the developers another chance to revive the project in Kuala Lumpur.

A representative for IWH couldn’t immediately comment on the matter. Discussions are early and the company may decide not to proceed with the plan.

The fundraising would support construction of the property and transport hub that has drawn interest from Chinese tech giants Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Huawei Technologies Co. The project was also set to be the hub for the now-suspended high speed rail that would connect Kuala Lumpur to Singapore.

Property Gloom

IWH holds a 60% stake in IWH-CREC Sdn., the joint venture assigned to build Bandar Malaysia, with China Railway Engineering owning the rest. The company controlled by Malaysian tycoon Lim Kang Hoo is the parent of listed real estate developer Iskandar Waterfront City Bhd., which surged as much as 6% on Tuesday. The share price has more than doubled this year while Bursa Malaysia’s property index declined 10%.

The IPO discussion comes as the real estate market struggles with persistent oversupply. The country had about 20 billion ringgit’s worth of unsold residential units in the first half, little changed from 2018. That has prompted the government to encourage more foreigners to buy property while calling for banks to lend more.

Bloomberg

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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.