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Friday, January 25, 2013

KYM set to return to limelight? (BT)

IN NEGOTIATIONS: Datuk K.Y. Lim, who has significant business interests in Perak, is said to be working closely with the state government for a dry bulk port concession

DATUK K.Y. Lim, one of the country's top backroom deal maker in the 1990s, is believed to be engineering a deal that would help push his listed company KYM Holdings Bhd back into the limelight.

Business Times understands that the tycoon, who has significant business interest in Perak, is working closely with the state government for a dry bulk port concession.

In the 1990's, Lim held key positions in Technology Resources Bhd (Celcom (M) Bhd), Naluri Bhd and Malaysia Airlines.

The tycoon has been low profile ever since, only to emerge in the limelight briefly in 2010, when he managed to convince Brazil's Vale SA, the world's second largest diversified metals and mining company to build a distribution centre and a port in Telok Rubiah, Perak.

As part of the deal, Lim also managed to sell off some 166ha of land in the area for almost RM102 million cash to the Brazilian company.

Lim's listed company, KYM Holdings Bhd, had a 54 per cent stake in Harta Makmur Sdn Bhd, the company which sold the land to the Brazilian firm.

At the time of the sale, there was talk that KYM would also actively participate in helping build and manage the port for the Brazilian company.

Such talks helped push KYM shares to RM3 a share by December 13 2010, but since the deals with Vale on helping build the port did not take off, the shares have since retreated.

KYM shares were last traded at 68 sen a piece, and market talk is the tycoon is finally ready to pull the rabbit out of the hat.

"This is the big one, as far as KYM is concerned," said a person close to the tycoon.

Business Times was told that KYM has shifted its focus to now ride on the Vale's RM9 billion distribution centre.

As such, the company is already involved now in helping reclaim 1,376ha of land in Bagan Datoh, Perak, which will be used for industrial purpose and the construction of a jetty.

In 2010, KYM's unit KYM Development Sdn Bhd inked an agreement with the Perak State Government State Economic Development Corp to help reclaim and develop the industrial park.

"Within the next few weeks, they will sign an agreement to build the jetty/port, with the state authorities," said the source.

Business Times was told in the first stage, the port will have two berths, and it will cost KYM somewhere between RM300 million and RM400 million to build the port.

"They will also manage the port, which will act as a feeder port for Vale," said the source, adding if the deal goes through, Perak will be home to the country's biggest dry bulk port.

Read more: KYM set to return to limelight?

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