Blumont soars after naming new chairman, LionGold, Asiasons rebound

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Shares in Singapore's Blumont Group more than doubled in early trade on Tuesday after the company appointed a new chairman, while Asiasons Capital and Liongold Corp rebounded from steep drops in the previous session.

In a rare move, the Singapore Exchange last Friday suspended trade in the shares of Blumont, Asiasons and Liongold, warning the market may not be fully informed of the companies' affairs after share prices tumbled.

The exchange on Sunday lifted the trading halts, but declared the stocks "designated securities," meaning investors cannot short-sell them and purchases must be paid for upfront with cash.

Asiasons was Liongold's biggest shareholder with an 8.7 per cent stake as of Aug. 30, while Blumont and Liongold have a non-executive independent director in common.

Blumont shares rose 131 per cent to hit an intra-day high of $0.30 on Tuesday, and were last traded at $0.225. The company has lost nearly $6 billion in market capitalisation since its shares hit a record high of $2.54 last week.

Mr Alexander Molyneux, chairman of two companies in which Blumont has invested - uranium firm Azarga Resources and Celsius Coal, a coking coal development company with assets in the Kyrgyz Republic - has agreed to acquire a 7.8 per cent stake in Blumont and become its chairman.

Molyneux, a former investment banker, had led SouthGobi Resources, a Mongolia-based coal miner, to list on both the Toronto Exchange and Hong Kong Exchange before leaving the company last year. He also sits on the board of Ivanhoe Energy, led by billionaire miner Robert Friedland.

Blumont, which previously was involved in the packaging, property and investment sectors, started investing last year in a number of companies in such sectors as iron ore, coal, gold, uranium and copper.

Shares of Asiasons rose as high as 57 per cent to $0.235 on Tuesday and Liongold Corp climbed as much as 44 per cent to $0.36.