Japanese golf course owner set to be biggest Singapore IPO so far this year

SINGAPORE - A business trust that owns golf courses in Japan could become the biggest listing on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) so far this year.

Accordia Golf Trust is seeking to raise as much as $782 million through its initial public offering (IPO).

It is offering about 782 million units in total, at between 97 cents and $1 per unit.

The offer price will be decided on July 24, the day the IPO closes. The trust is expected to debut on Aug 1 on the mainboard.

The business trust is sponsored by Japan-based golf course operator Accordia Golf, which is listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

Retail investors in Singapore are only offered around 41.2 million units, or about 5 per cent of the total number available.

The lion's share of the units will be offered to the public in Japan. They are being offered about 576.3 million units, or around 74 per cent of the total.

The remaining 21 per cent of units are in the placement tranche for institutional investors.

Business trusts are a more flexible instrument than real estate investment trusts (reits). Reits can only invest in property and must distribute at least 90 per cent of their taxable income to get tax breaks. In contrast, business trusts are allowed to hold any asset class and do not have restrictions on how much of their profits they must distribute to their unitholders.

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