Aqua Munda prepared to make offer to Hyflux PnP holders

Hyflux is under moratorium until July 30, 2020. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) - Potential Hyflux investor Aqua Munda is prepared to make an offer to the preference shares and perpetual securities (PnP) holders of Hyflux, the Securities Investors Association (Singapore) or Sias has said.

In a statement on Tuesday (June 9), Sias president and chief executive officer David Gerald said Aqua Munda had reached out to Sias on Monday this week; it was seeking to understand the concerns of the PnP holders, so that the firm can factor these into its plans to make an offer for Hyflux.

While Aqua Munda did not provide any details of its proposed offer to the PnP holders at the meeting, Mr Gerald said Sias was assured that Aqua Munda "will provide, at the appropriate time, details of its offer and financial capability to meet the acquisition, with also details of its business plans for Hyflux".

Aqua Munda, a Singapore-registered company that manufactures water-treatment, waste-treatment and oilfield chemicals, had also informed Sias that it can secure contracts for Hyflux in South-east Asia and in the Middle East, to be announced in the near future.

"Their strong interest in Hyflux is due to the established track record of Hyflux in building the treatment plants, and the expertise of the company and its management," said Mr Gerald.

At the meeting with Aqua Munda, Sias had reiterated the importance of taking into consideration the fact that PnP holders - who are largely retail investors - have "suffered enough". It emphasised that Aqua Munda must be "sincere in making an offer that takes into consideration their plight", he said.

That being said, he noted that Sias sees Aqua Munda's effort to proactively engage with Sias as a positive step, and will continue to engage with the firm to work towards a favourable outcome for the PnP holders.

Sias is urging Aqua Munda to put forward its offer and all relevant information to the PnP holders as soon as possible, as Hyflux is under moratorium until July 30.

"Unless a successful outcome is achieved, there is a high chance that the company may end in liquidation, in which event the PnPs will not receive anything," said Mr Gerald.

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