Malaysia's Permodalan Nasional Plans IPO of Highway Business

By Yantoultra Ngui Features Dow Jones Newswires

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia--Malaysia's biggest state fund manager, Permodalan Nasional Bhd. (PNM.YY), is planning to list its highway unit at the end of 2018 or early 2019, according to its president and group chief executive, Abdul Rahman Ahmad.

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Permodalan Nasional, which as of May has under management assets of 265.6 billion ringgit ($62 billion), said the plan to list its wholly owned Projek Lintasan Kota Holdings Sdn. Bhd., or Prolintas, is intended to monetize its assets and use the proceeds for other companies or investments.

"We believe listing is the right way to actually monetize part of our holdings and add to our portfolio of strategic companies," Mr. Abdul Rahman said at a briefing on Permodalan Nasional's first-half performance.

Permodalan Nasional's strategic listed companies include the country's biggest bank by assets, Malayan Banking Bhd. (1155.KU), and the world's biggest palm-oil company by land size, Sime Darby Bhd. (4197.KU)

Mr. Abdul Rahman said it is too early to provide more financial information, including Prolintas' valuation, on the plan for the initial public offering.

Prolintas is the second-largest highway concessionaire in Malaysia after Plus Expressways Bhd. It owns companies that construct, operate and maintain some of the major highways in the capital, Kuala Lumpur, and richest state, Selangor.

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The Prolintas IPO would add to the number of bigger companies planning to list on the local bourse. There has been a drought of bigger listings over the past few years out of fear that market volatility could hurt their valuations.

But economic development, funds flowing into local markets and the stabilization of the ringgit since the start of the year have helped lift investor sentiment.

Lotte Chemical Titans Holdings Bhd., a petrochemical unit of South Korea's fifth-biggest conglomerate Lotte Group (LOT.YY), is scheduled to make its debut on the Malaysian bourse on July 11 in an offering that would raise up to $1.4 billion. That would be the largest IPO in Malaysia since 2012, when entertainment company Astro Malaysia Holdings Bhd. (6399.KU) raised $1.5 billion.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 22, 2017 06:14 ET (10:14 GMT)