Selasa, 4 Februari 2014

The Star Online: Business

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The Star Online: Business

AirAsia X gets go-ahead for Thai operations

Posted: 04 Feb 2014 08:00 AM PST

PETALING JAYA: AirAsia X Bhd associate Thai AirAsia X Co Ltd (TAAX) has received the Air Operator's Certificate (AOC) from the Department of Civil Aviation of Thailand, clearing one of its final hurdles to begin operations in Thailand.

The company said the AOC would pave the way for TAAX to proceed with the application for operating permits and slots to its intended international routes.

"The commencement date of commercial operations and the official launch of its hub in Bangkok will be announced once the operating permits and slots are obtained," it said in a statement.

AirAsia X, which is a low-cost, long-haul air transportation services company, holds a 49% stake in TAAX.

It said that TAAX would lease two Airbus A330-300s with 377 seats from a subsidiary of the company in its first year of operations, and would commence services from Bangkok's Don Mueng International Airport.

Meanwhile, AirAsia X also announced the appointment of Nadda Buranasiri as TAAX chief executive officer.

It said Nadda had more than 20 years of international general management experience across global multinational organisations.

"The announcement of Nadda Buranasiri as CEO of TAAX has come at an opportune time, as we finally received the approvals for the AOC," said AirAsia X CEO Azran Osman-Rani in the same statement.

"TAAX is expected to offer connecting fly-thru services with Thai AirAsia's short-haul domestic and regional network, offering greater connectivity options from hubs in Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok.

"The establishment of our Thai hub will see the beginning of AirAsia X's strategic multi-hub plan turn into reality," he added.

Aeon advances in thin trade, more upside seen

Posted: 04 Feb 2014 06:03 PM PST

KUALA LUMPUR: Shares of Aeon Co. (M) Bhd rose in thin trade on Wednesday while Affin Investment Research upgraded it to a Buy and raised the target price from RM11.90 to RM13.95.

At 9.53am, it was up 12 sen to RM12.02 but with only 300 shares done.

The FBM KLCI rose 5.31 points to 1,784.14. Turnover was 332.92 million shares valued at RM198.74mil. There were 265 gainers, 108 losers and 171 counters unchanged.

Affin Research said further downside to stock price was limited as it upgraded Aeon from Reduce to a Buy with a higher target price of RM13.95,  pegged to an unchanged 18 times calendar year 2014 earnings per share (EPS).

"The higher TP was due to an upward revision in our FY14-15 EPS forecast of 0.9% and 4.1% respectively, which takes into account: 1) the additional revenue contribution from the opening of 4 new AEON malls (2 each in FY14 and FY15), with an average same store sales growth of 3%; and 2) a higher average occupancy rate assumption of 98% (from an average of 96% previously)," it said.

Affin Research said Aeon is expected to announce its FY13 results on Feb 27 and the research house believes Aeon's result would likely achieve a net profit growth of at least 10% to RM235mil, in line with its net profit forecast of RM241mil.

Aeon's share price has declined by 32% from its peak in May 2013 (down 12% YTD), and is currently trading at its two-year historical low, while valuations are more attractive at 15.6 times FY14 EPS.

"The sharp underperformance in Aeon's share price can be attributed to: 1) its lofty valuations (traded up to 22 times at its peak); and 2) investors' concerns over an overall slowdown in consumer spending following the government's subsidy rationalisation programme.

"This resulted in Aeon's major shareholders, the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) and Aberdeen Asset Management paring down their stakes. Aberdeen Asset currently owns 20.3% of Aeon's stake vs its peak at 22.5% in May 2013, while the EPF currently owns 9.1%, fell from its peak at 11.3% in January 2013," it said.

Bernas jumps on second offer though price unchanged

Posted: 04 Feb 2014 05:46 PM PST

KUALA LUMPUR: Shares of Padiberas Nasional Bhd (Bernas) neared the unchanged offer price of RM3.70 in early Wednesday trade after a second offer was put forward by the joint offerors.

At 9.35am, Bernas had risen 20 sen to RM3.68. There were 73,900 shares done.

The FBM KLCI rose 5.99 points to 1,784.82. Turnover was 238.61 million shares valued at RM125.81mil. There were 235 gainers, 81 losers and 142 counters unchanged.

On Tuesday, the parties attempting a takeover of Bernas put a second offer on the table, but with no changes to the price tag of RM3.70 cash per share.

Bernas said it had received an unconditional takeover offer from Perspective Lane (M) Sdn Bhd, Kelana Ventures Sdn Bhd, Seaport Terminal (Johore) Sdn Bhd and Acara Kreatif Sdn Bhd to acquire the remaining 76.7 million shares, or 16.31%, of the company.

The joint-offerers and Tradewinds (M) Bhd already hold an 83.69% stake in Bernas.


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