Ezion Holdings sells shares worth $194m to Hong Leong units

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore-listed Ezion Holdings, which supplies support vessels for offshore oil fields, said it plans to sell shares to two firms in Malaysia's Hong Leong Group, raising US$155 million (S$194 million) to help expand its fleet.

The capital raising follows news this month of an up to US$380 million planned initial public offering (IPO) in Singapore by PACC Offshore Services Holdings (POSH), an operator of maritime support vessels controlled by Malaysia's richest man Robert Kuok.

Ezion issued 100 new million shares at $1.94 per share, an 8.9 per cent discount to Tuesday's closing price.

Asia Fountain Investment Company Limited and GuoLine Capital Limited, both subsidiaries of Hong Leong Company (Malaysia) Berhad, each subscribed to 50 million shares. Hong Leong Company (Malaysia) Berhad is the holding company of Hong Leong Financial Group Bhd.

Each unit will hold approximately 3.8 per cent of the enlarged share capital of the company.

Ezion plans to use 70-90 per cent of the net proceeds on the acquisition of offshore and marine assets, and the rest on general working capital. The company's net non-current assets rose 84 per cent in 2013, after nearly tripling in the previous year.

Ezion shares were flat at $2.13 after the announcement.