By SHAHEERA AZNAM SHAH
ARB Bhd is eyeing a merger and acquisition (M&A) deal this year, leveraging its current strong net cash position, to expand the group’s cloud computing business.
The group plans to extend ARB’s footprint in the IT segment by targeting an M&A deal with a higher return on investment, which is expected to increase its shareholders’ value.
“I think we are in a good position to expand our business beyond the boundary. Over the last three years, we have solidified our position in the IT business in Malaysia.
“We have been focusing on the field of enterprise resource planning (ERP) and Internet of Things (IoT) solutions as Covid-19 accelerated user demand for cloud-based computing needs,” ARB ED Datuk Seri Larry Liew Kok Leong said in a statement yesterday.
Liew said the company aims to ride on the surge in demand for cloud-based computing as a result of the pandemic, coupled with rising interest from international clients for digitalisation and cost-optimisation efforts.
“IT solutions have been proven to help companies achieve their digitalisation efforts and improve cost optimisation in the long-term.
“We foresee a strong demand for solutions in new categories such as big data analytics, e-commerce solutions, IoT platform for 5G and data cybersecurity.
“The group needs to expand into horizontal markets to provide innovative solutions in this area, but the demand far exceeds our capacity and existing infrastructure.
“This is why the next phase for ARB is to look at M&A potentials and collaboration with our local partners,” he said.
Liew said the potential M&A and collaborations are expected to expand ARB’s geographical presence and access in new sectors while taking advantage of the cross-border business opportunities in 2021.
“Overseas expansion will help build a regional reputation for the group. On the domestic front, ARB will continue to work closely with government-linked companies, multinational corporations and public-listed companies to grow its ERP and IoT business segments,” he said.
The government recently introduced the MyDigital initiative which is intended to spur the country’s digital transformation direction plan and drive the business sector to compete globally. The blueprint targets the local digital economy to contribute 22.6% to the country’s GDP by 2025.
ARB saw its net profit for the financial year 2020 (FY20) rise to RM43.46 million compared to RM34.77 million in FY19, as its revenue more than doubled to RM219.45 million from RM102.64 million.
Its share price ended 2.5 sen or 6.33% lower yesterday to 37 sen, giving it a market valuation of RM175.62 million.