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Maika: Maika Share Buy Back Not Politically-Motivated - Tycoon

Contributed by Anonymous on Wednesday, May 12 @ 02:49:05 CDT

MIC
KUALA LUMPUR, May 12 (Bernama) -- There is no political motive in the takeover of Maika Holdings Bhd shares but purely a noble intention to help 66,000 long-suffering Malaysian Indians, port tycoon Tan Sri G. Gnanalingam said on Wednesday.


Brushing aside speculation and news reports that the move to buy back the shares was politically-linked, the businessman said his intention was to try end the issue because he felt that shareholders should be given a respite after being caught in the Maika share fiasco for the last 26 years.

"I was appointed to the Cabinet Committee and Special Implementation Taskforce aimed at assisting the Indian community, and I found this issue to be a big problem faced by Indians.

"So, I have come out with this plan or proposal. This problem has been going on and on.

"The prime minister (Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak) and the committee are certainly disturbed with this problem. So, I branched into this. We are not looking at the past, but the future. Out of the 66,000 shareholders, about 60,000 are without proper resources (cash). This is the important segment that I want to assist in," he declared at a press conference at the CIMB Bank headquarters here on Wednesday.

Also present at the press conference, held to announce the conditional takeover offer by G Team Resources & Holding Bhd to acquire all shares in Maika Holdings Bhd, was CIMB Group Chief Executive Datuk Seri Nazir Razak.

Under the proposal, Gnanalingam's firm, G Team Resources, will buy out financially-troubled Maika for RM100 million and pay back the money invested by the 66,000 long-suffering shareholders of MIC's investment arm. Each shareholder would stand to get 80 sen per share.

Shareholders would be given 21 days to redeem their shares. They would get their offer letters via post and would most likely be asked to submit the share buy-back applications to any CIMB Bank branches nationwide.

"G Team does not intend to gain any financial benefits from the exercise. Should the subsequent disposal of Maika's assets and settlement of liabilities result in any financial gain, the monies would be donated to an established charity for the benefit of the Malaysian Indian community.

"In the case of a shortfall in the asset and liabilities realisation, the loss would be borne by G Team. The offer shall be conditional upon G Team receiving more than 50 per cent of the voting shares in Maika, falling which, the offer would lapse," the Westports executive chairman added.

However, the well-known businessman, dubbed the 'white knight' who would save Maika and end the woes of the 66,000 Malaysian Indians, said from the feedback received to date, the exercise would result in at least 70 per cent of Maika shares being bought back.

On Oriental Capital Assurance (OCA) Bhd, a 74 per cent subsidiary of Maika, he said G Team would explore the opportunities to dispose the stake and were open to receive any offer for it from interested parties.

"We intend to cease Maika's operations and comply with BNM's (Bank Negara Malaysia) condition to dispose the stake in OCA within 12 months from the completion of the subsequent general offer on OCA. CIMB would be assisting G Team manage the sale of OCA to parties approved by BNM," he added.

On Maika's second biggest asset, a 32 hectare land in Sepang, Gnanalingam said the land was en*****bered and once its title and valuation had been verified, a committee led by him, would determine the best way to realise the value of the land.

Gnanalingam however, declined to reveal the exact percentage of Maika shares owned by MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu.

It had been reported that many people who invested in Maika, the investment arm of the MIC, in 1984 were Indian estate workers who had pawned their family jewellery and withdrawn their life savings to invest.

But Maika Holdings, which was established in 1982 to enable Malaysian Indians to participate in the country's economic growth, did not produce good returns, much to the disillusionment of its shareholders.

Asked if a court order taken out by some Maika shareholders to stop such a sale in the past would hamper the exercise, Gnanalingam said it would not be stumbling block but "we can't do anything about it until we become substantial shareholders of Maika".

Meanwhile, Nazir explained that both G Team and CIMB did not have any intention to short change the shareholders through the exercise and that "the key thing is to look forward."

He said the whole exercise would clear one hurdle at a time and would "cross the bridge when we come to it but we are clearly going ahead (with the exercise).

"We will issue the share sale proposal forms and it must be submitted at CIMB branches. We want to ensure every single shareholder receives the forms for the share buy-back," he added.

-- BERNAMA

****
G Team Serves Takeover Offer Of Maika Shares At 80 Sen Each     -->
KUALA LUMPUR, May 12 (Bernama) -- G Team Resources & Holdings Sdn Bhd this morning served a takeover notice to the Maika Holdings Bhd Board of Directors, to acquire all its 125 million voting shares, at 80 sen per share in cash.

The offer is based on the shareholders' original investment of RM100 million and 25 million bonus shares received in 1996, in the ailing investment arm of the MIC, it said in a statement Wednesday.

G Team Resources is a special purpose vehicle formed by port tycoon Tan Sri G. Gnanalingam and another individual Datuk S. Kunasingam, to return long-suffering Maika shareholders their original cost of investment.

The offer do*****ent is expected to be despatched to Maika shareholders within 21 days. The offer would remain open for at least 21 days from the date of the offer do*****ent.

CIMB Investment Bank has been engaged as the adviser and financier to G Team for this exercise.

Gnanalingam had recently moved to help resolve the woes of Indian shareholders in Maika, considered the biggest problem besetting the community.

At a press conference here Wednesday, Gnanalingam said he was confident of receiving more than 50 per cent of the voting shares, failing which, the offer would lapse.

He said a general offer of Oriental Capital Assurance Bhd (OCA), a 74.16 per cent subsidiary of Maika, would also be triggered once the offer becomes unconditional.

"We do not intend to continue with the operations of Maika and will deal with the assets and liabilities of the firm in a transparent manner," he added.

Maika currently has two main assets, namely its stake in OCA and a piece of land in Sepang.

He added that the land in Sepang was en*****bered and once its title and valuation was verified, a committee would be set up to determine the best way to realise its value.

At the same event, CIMB Group Chief Executive, Datuk Seri Nazir Razak said G Team would explore opportunities to dispose of the stake in OCA and was open to receiving interest from all qualified parties.

This is in line with G Team's intention to cease Maika's operations and to comply with Bank Negara Malaysia's condition to dispose of its stake in OCA within 12 months from the completion of the subsequent general offer on the insurance firm.

"G Team does not intend to gain any financial benefits from the exercise and should the disposal of Maika's assets and settlement of liabilities result in a surplus, it would be donated to an established charity for the benefit of the Indian community.

"But the case of having a surplus is remote. The probability is there for G team to be short-changed, instead of the shareholders," he explained.

In the case of a shortfall in the asset and liabilities realisation, the loss would be borne by G Team, he said.

Nazir also said that they were looking at a mechanism to assist shareholders in dealing with the process of selling their shares to G Team.

"The obvious way is to post it. But, we will also look at having collection centres at our branches, to facilitate with the form submission by shareholders," he said.

-- BERNAMA

*****
Samy to chair 'moonless' CWC meet
/* */
By M Kumaran KUALA LUMPUR: With the tides turning against him, MIC president S Samy Vellu is said to have turned to the moon for help. According to an MIC source, this is the reason why the 74-year-old party boss chose to hold the Central Working Committee meeting tomorrow. Normally, the meetings are held towards the end of the month, and on Fridays. However, the source claimed that Samy Vellu's trip to India last week with his son Vell Paari had led to a change in plans. “Father and son carried out prayers in India, and the priests there advised them to hold the meeting on Amavasai (no moon day),” he said. He claimed that the prayers were done to ensure that Samy Vellu does not face any “embarassment or arguments” during the meeting. “The president was told that he would face no hurldes if the meeting is held on this day, since the moon has the power to influence people,” he said. New deal for Maika Holdings Several pricky issues are expected to be raised at tomorrow's meeting such as the Maika Holdings deal and the post-mortem results for the April 25 Hulu Selangor by-election. Maika Holdings, MIC's debt-ridden investment arm, is to be rescued by prominent business tycoons G Gnanalingam and S Kunasingam through a special purporse vehicle called G Team Resources & Holdings Sdn Bhd. This morning G Team Resources served a takeover notice to the Maika Holdings board of directors to acquire all its 125 million voting shares at 80 sen per share in cash. The offer is based on the shareholders' original investment of RM100 million and 25 million bonus shares received in 1996. G Team Resources' offer was however lesser than the one made in the past by a company linked to another tycoon, T Ananda Krishnan. The MIC source said Samy Vellu is expected to take credit for the new deal during tomorrow's meeting, but he is hoping that the 80 sen offer will not draw flak from CWC members such as KP Samy. KP Samy is closely linked to Samy Vellu's arch nemesis, former deputy president S Subramaniam, who was behind a court injunction which prevented Maika from disposing its insurance firm. “This is where the 'Ammavasai' is expected to work its magic by keeping the critics silent,” said the source. Maika Holdings, which has been the subject of numerous reports and allegations, is now helmed by Vell Paari, who is the company's chief executive officer. 'Samy holds the trump card' Meanwhile, the source said the MIC president is also expected to touch on the issue of “sabotage” during the Hulu Selangor by-election. In the run-up to the contest, Hulu Selangor MIC Youth chief V Mugilan was accused of working against party interest. Previously, FMT also reported that Samy Vellu was mulling disciplinary action against his deputy G Palanivel on the same grounds as well. Ties between the two is said to have struck a sour note. The MIC source said the president will not be initiating disciplinary action against anyone, “but he will hold the trump card since he has compiled all the evidence”. Apart from these issues, Samy Vellu is also expected to talk about the pressure from Umno with regard to a leadership transition in MIC.


 
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