United Plantations proposes bonus issue of 208.1m of its new shares

All treasury shares will be entitled to the bonus shares for the avoidance of doubt, notes the planter

by NUR HANANI AZMAN / pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

UNITED Plantations Bhd proposed to undertake a bonus issue of 208.13 million new shares on the basis of one bonus unit for one existing share held in order to reward shareholders.

For the avoidance of doubt, all treasury shares will be entitled to the bonus shares and it will be treated as treasury shares to be held by United Plantations upon allotment and issuance, the planter noted in its filing yesterday.

“The board intends to undertake the proposed bonus issue to reward the existing shareholders of the company in the form of bonus shares for their loyalty and continuing support, as the proposed bonus issue serves to increase the number of United Plantations’ shares held by the company’s shareholders with no cash outlay by the shareholders, while maintaining their percentage of equity shareholding held in the company.

“The proposed bonus issue may potentially result in an improved trading liquidity of United Plantations’ shares traded in the market at an affordable share price without affecting the size of the market capitalisation of the company and encourage greater participation by investors, as well as potentially broadening the shareholder base of the company,” United Plantations added.

United Plantations said barring any unforeseen circumstances and subject to all required approvals being obtained, the bonus issue is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2020.

AmInvestment Bank Bhd has been appointed as the principal advisor for the proposed bonus issue.

United Plantations’ shares closed 0.15% or four sen lower to RM26.36 for a market capitalisation of RM5.49 billion on the news.

United Plantations declared a final dividend of 20 sen a share and special dividend of 85 sen a share amounting to RM1.05 a share for financial year 2019 (FY19).

The ex-date for the dividends falls on April 27, 2020, while the payment date is May 8, 2020.

The payout comes after the Teluk Intan-based group posted a 23.9% fall in net profit to RM283.29 million for FY19 from RM372.42 million a year earlier as revenue dropped 10.1% year-on-year to RM1.17 billion, according to United Plantations’ annual report which was filed with Bursa Malaysia yesterday.

United Plantations’ principal activities are the cultivation and processing of oil palm and coconut on plantations in Peninsular Malaysia and Indonesia.