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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Stocks to watch: HPI, Gamuda, Equine, Unisem, Ecofuture (Edge)

Key markets are expected to see downside pressure on Thursday, June 16 after US stocks tumbled on Wednesday, driven lower by escalating Greek debt woes, while troubling U.S. data pointed to further losses ahead.

The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 178.84 points, or 1.48 percent, to 11,897.27. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index lost 22.45 points, or 1.74 percent, to 1,265.42. The Nasdaq Composite Index slid 47.26 points, or 1.76 percent, to 2,631.46.

At Bursa Malaysia, HPI RESOURCES BHD [] share price is expected to see strong buying interest on Thursday, June 15 after Japan’s Oji Paper Co. Ltd launched a takeover for RM257.52 million or RM4.40 a share.

Other companies which could see trading interest include GAMUDA BHD [] and MMC CORPORATION BHD []; EQUINE CAPITAL BHD [], UNISEM (M) BHD [] and ECOFUTURE BHD. []

Oji Paper has offered to acquire all of HPI Resources’ 58.528 million shares for RM257.52 million. At RM4.40, this was a premium of 47 sen or 12% over the last traded price of RM3.93.

“The board has deliberated on the offer and does not intend to seek an alternate person to make a take-over for the offer shares,” it said.

Meanwhile, Gamuda Bhd and MMC Corporation Bhd have teamed up to bid for the underground works package of the multi-billion ringgit Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit project.

Both companies signed a joint venture agreement whereby they would bid to pre-qualify and tender for the tunnelling, underground and such other works. Each company would have a 50% stake in the joint venture.

Equine Capital, which had fallen from the radar screen in recent years, is trying to make a company through its property venture.

It is launching a mixed commercial and residential freehold development project -- da:mén -- or “Great Door) in USJ, Subang Jaya which is near the Summit shopping mall and hotel. It promises to offer a distinctively unique retail and dining experience with lifestyle pleasures for the urbanites.

The company has also returned to the black in the financial year ended March 31, 2011. In the fourth quarter ended March 31, it reported net profit of RM2.25 million compared with net loss of RM25.57 million a year ago. For the 12-months, its net profit was RM6.37 million compared with net loss of RM36.43 million a year ago.

However, its cashflow was enhanced following proceeds from disposal of investment property totaling for RM28 million. Its cash and cash equivalents at end of the financial year was only RM6.4 million.

Unisem expects the current financial year ending Dec 31, 2011 to be lacklustre due to tough economic environment in major markets.

Group managing director John Chia said Unisem’s financial results in FY 2011 was unlikely to be better than the previous year's numbers due to a tougher economic environment in the US, Europe, Japan and China, apart from the weakening of the US dollar.

"Our capital expenditure this year will be less than FY10 capex of some RM380 million" Chia said at Unisem's shareholders meeting.

Ecofuture will be suspended from June 23 after it failed to appoint a replacement sponsor by June 10 and ultimately, faces delisting by June 27.

Bursa Malaysia Securities said Ecofuture was unable to appoint a replacement sponsor within three months after its then sponsor ECM Libra Investment Bank Bhd had tendered its resignation on March 10.

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