OCBC invests RM60m into homegrown accounting firm YYC

The collaboration is timely in light of the significance of the SMEs market to the country and especially due to YYC’s roots in the Chinese community, says Ong

by S BIRRUNTHA

SINGAPORE’S Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Ltd (OCBC) has invested about RM60 million in a local accounting, tax and business advisory, YYC Group, due to the firm’s strong business growth and ahead of a possible initial public offering (IPO).

OCBC’s investment in YYC was done through OCBC Bank (M) Bhd and Lion-OCBC Capital Fund I, a private equity fund created by the OCBC’s Mezzanine Capital Unit (MCU) and asset management subsidiary, Lion Global Investors Ltd.

OCBC’s MCU global head Daniel Kwan said OCBC will be acquiring less than 20% stake in the homegrown accounting firm.

“About RM40 million from the total RM60 million will be used as a war chest for merger and acquisition (M&A) exercise,” he said at a media briefing in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Kwan added that the regional banking group is looking forward in helping YYC’s growth ambitions to further expand their business regionally.

The existing YYC’s management team will remain, while OCBC acts as an advisor to the firm.

OCBC Malaysia CEO Datuk Ong Eng Bin said the collaboration is timely in light of the significance of the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) market to the country and especially due to YYC’s roots in the Chinese community.

“Like YYC, we are keenly on the lookout for how best to help SMEs carefully navigate to the next level. Our collaboration will enable SMEs to deepen their footing in their respective industries through the cutting-edge services they will receive,” he said in his speech.

YYC CEO Datin Yap Shin Siang said the firm will utilise the investment from OCBC to obtain more businesses in the areas it operates in, as well as on marketing efforts to widen its client base.

“We are expecting strong organic growth, coupled with strategic acquisitions, to catapult the company to greater heights, both within the country and regionally.

“Despite starting off with a confined focus on SMEs, we have now expanded into the realm of larger corporations. We believe this strategic collaboration between the YYC and OCBC will propel us forward,” she said.

YYC is optimistic of an IPO within five years after having their revenue tripled since 2016.

The proposed listing, according to YYC executive chairman Yap Zhi Chau, could be in Malaysia, Hong Kong and Singapore.

“For now, it is easier for us to be listed on the ACE Market in Malaysia and priority will be given to Malaysia. We will be looking at the listing closer towards 2023 and 2024,” he said.

Ong said the banking group has 100,000 SMEs’ clients in Malaysia and the investment would allow YYC to leverage OCBC Malaysia’s client base.

YYC began its operations as a small family business in 1974 and has grown to over 800 employees serving more than 20,000 clients.

The firm has offices operating in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Johor, Penang and Singapore.