Ascapia not making partial takeover offer for Datapulse

Hedge fund Ascapia Capital will not make a partial takeover offer for Datapulse Technology after all, dashing investors' hopes and sending the stock plunging.

It had said on Thursday that it would announce by yesterday whether it had firm intentions to make the partial takeover offer.

That clarification came yesterday when it told mainboard-listed Datapulse of its decision.

The news sent Datapulse shares down 8.1 per cent to 34 cents.

Singapore-based Ascapia has 410,000 shares in the firm, a stake of about 0.19 per cent.

Its portfolio manager, Mr Wesley Widjaja, had earlier said that "we want a 27 per cent" interest in the embattled disk-drive maker "so we can have a say" in how the business is being run.

Datapulse has been rocked by a shareholder revolt and faces regulatory action by the bourse operator, following the arrival of a new controlling shareholder in December and a board reshuffle.

The family of co-founder Ng Khim Guan has launched a bid to oust the recently appointed directors and put a stop to their acquisition of a Malaysian personal care product company.

Mr Ng's daughter, Bie Tjin, and family investment vehicle Uniseraya Holdings together have a stake of roughly 16 per cent.

Ms Ng Siew Hong - no relation - holds 29 per cent and has been backing the board's moves.

Datapulse also has about 9,000 minority shareholders.

Separately, Datapulse has filed a writ of summons and statement of claim against Ascapia over an open letter to minority shareholders that purportedly contained "baseless allegations".

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 10, 2018, with the headline 'Ascapia not making partial takeover offer for Datapulse'. Print Edition | Subscribe