CTOS Digital increases stake in Thailand’s information company bureau

The group acquires another 21.74m shares via direct biz transfer


CTOS Digital Bhd increased its stake in its Thailand-based associate Business Online Public Co Ltd (BOL) to 22.65% from 20% to expand its foothold in the neighbouring country.

The group acquired 21.74 million shares via direct business transfer, representing 2.65% stake in BOL for 208.7 million baht (RM26.8 million).

It said the acquisition will be fully funded by proceeds from the recent IPO.

“BOL continues to exceed our expectations and we are very pleased with the opportunity to increase our stake,” said CTOS Digital CEO Dennis Martin.

CTOS Digital Berhad is the holding company of CTOS Data Systems Sdn Bhd, a credit reporting agency in Malaysia.

The group provides solutions across three core customer segments namely the Key Account segment, which includes a significant number of financial institutions and corporates; the Commercial segment, which includes a growing number of small and medium enterprises (SMEs); as well as over 1.3 million individual customers registered with CTOS ID in its Direct-to-Consumer segment.

Meanwhile, according to CTOS Digital, BOL is the largest information company bureau in Thailand, with 59% market share in terms of revenue for the financial year (FY) ended Dec 31, 2020, as per International Data Corp.

“BOL has an extensive database of business information online on over 1.6 million local businesses including Thailand’s financial institutions, corporates, SMEs and government agencies.

“The acquisition is not subject to approvals of CTOS Digital’s shareholders or other relevant regulatory authorities,” it said.

The group added that the acquisition will not have a material effect on its earnings per share, net assets per share and gearing for the FY ending Dec 31, 2021.

However, the acquisition is expected to increase the share of profit from BOL as a result of the higher equity interest.

The credit rating agency made its debut on the local exchange last month and aimed to raise RM1.2 billion.

Its listing included a public issue of 200 million new shares and an offer-for-sale of 900 million existing shares, priced at RM1.10, valuing the company at RM2.4 billion.

CTOS Digital has registered a net profit of RM11.84 million for its second quarter ended June 30, 2021 (2Q21), up 57.9% from RM7.5 million last year.

Revenue expanded 24.5% to RM37.85 million from RM30.65 million in the corresponding period last year on the back of strong growth in new CTOS Credit Manager subscribers and strong demand for CTOS Data Systems Reports and digital solutions.

Its share price remained unchanged last Friday to close at RM1.56 with a market capitalisation of RM3.43 billion.