SGX-listed Ezra Holdings may relook investments in Malaysia’s Perisai Petroleum

Visual from the company website. August 2015

Singapore-listed oil service provider Ezra Holdings may need to consider its investments in Malaysia’s Perisai Petroleum Teknologi after the latter declared itself insolvent amid a default on $89.6 million (SGD125 million) bond, a situation it has said were due to headwinds in the oil and gas sector.

In a filing with the Singapore stock exchange, Ezra said that it “is monitoring the situation and assessing the impact on the group” and further announcements will be made in due course as and when appropriate.

Ezra, which is heavily leveraged at the moment, is Bursa Malaysia-listed Perisai’s largest shareholder with a 20.6 per cent stake through Emas Offshore Ltd and another unit that includes a joint venture.

“The offshore oil & gas industry has remained uncertain and volatile and as the market remains depressed in 2016, the Group continues to see challenging times as the demand for the Group’s offshore assets and services continue to remain low,” Ezra had said in an announcement at the stock exchange.

The announcement from Ezra follows the recent news when the Malaysian upstream oil and gas service provider Perisai declared itself insolvent following the default on the principal and interest of the $89.6 million (SGD125 million) bond issued by its subsidiary company Perisai Capital (L) Inc.

Perisai had failed when it had made a proposal to its Singapore bondholders to delay the maturity of the notes and defaulted on the October payment for the bonds which were due earlier in the month and February next year. As a result, the company triggered the Practice Note 17 (PN17) criteria of Bursa Malaysia.

In a filing at the Singapore stock exchange, Ezra said, Perisai “and its subsidiaries are currently operating under adverse financial conditions. With the current market downturn, the Group’s business has been negatively affected by market conditions in the oil & gas sector, including weak crude oil prices and slow economic growth”.

In a set of proposals, Ezra has asked to waive various financial obligations.

“The company and its subsidiaries have and are likely to continue to face strong headwinds in the foreseeable future. As part of the group’s policy, the group will reassess the value of its assets as at Aug 31, 2016, and if necessary, impair or write them down as appropriate,” it said in a filing with the Singapore stock exchange.

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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.