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What now for PUC?
LOSS-MAKING ACE Market-listed PUC Bhd was one of those who did not succeed in winning a digital bank licence.
The company’s bid was an interesting one – reports had indicated that its bid would have included a partner in the form of the Genting Group.
GPVF Sdn Bhd, an indirect subsidiary of Genting Plantations Bhd, the plantation arm of the Genting Group, had taken up a placement of shares in PUC.
Fast forward to today, and it is left to be seen what will become of PUC and its shareholders. PUC’s latest annual report shows that the single largest shareholder remains the Genting Group, by virtue of GPVF, with a 10% stake.
The second largest shareholder is Matrix Edge Venture Sdn Bhd (MEV), whose shareholders in turn include Datuk Seri Adnan Wan Mamat (40%), who is also a director of a subsidiary of the Royal Pahang Durian Group.
MEV owns 7.7% of PUC, and also secured those shares from the same previous placement exercise by PUC. The shares were placed out at 12.5 sen each.
PUC CEO Cheong Chia Chou holds a mere 3.59% stake in the company, the annual report reveals.
PUC shares trade at a mere 4.5 sen a piece today. For its latest quarter ending March 31, PUC reported a loss of RM7.9mil, indicating that its existing technology business just isn’t cutting it.,
Its full year loss for FY2021 hit RM60mil.
After a 2020 streamlining exercise, PUC has two business segments, namely media, advertising and digital imaging businesses, as well as the Presto platform businesses comprising eCommerce and digital payment services.
The group is also exploring opportunities in food delivery, and digital moneylending business.
What now for the big name shareholders of PUC? Will they be able to recoup their investment loss into this company or do they have bigger plans for it, considering their significant shareholding?
A positive point is that PUC has RM19mil in cash with debt of only around RM3.4mil.
The great squeeze
IT was a headline number that will surely send policy makers into a headspin when the rate of inflation shot up to 3.4% in June.
The jump from May was large when the price of goods and services rose 2.8%.
The inflation rate of 3.4% surely tops the upper end of what the authorities had forecast inflation to be for 2022.
With inflation forecast to reach between 2.2% and 3.2% for 2022, the odds are that inflation has not done posting the large increases that are biting into the spending power of consumers.