Keppel To Buy SPH For $3.4B, Privatisation Of Non-Media Arm Will Follow

Keppel Corp Offers $3.4B To Buy SPH When Media Arm Turns Into Non-Profit

Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) has long been the country’s largest media business, but it also deals in non-media sectors such as property.

Keppel Corp, a Singapore conglomerate, has offered to buy SPH for S$3.4 billion, The Straits Times (ST) reports on Monday (2 Aug).

This would privatise SPH’s non-media arm, and is dependent on the media restructuring of the media portion.

Keppel Corp offers $3.4b to SPH

Keppel Corp said on Monday (2 Aug) that it intends to acquire SPH, then delist and privatise it after the company has transferred its media assets.

Source

This is part of Keppel’s plans to be an integrated business for sustainable urbanisation, it said.

Prior to the announcement, both SPH and Keppel Corp, as well as their subsidiaries – SPH Reit and Keppel Reit – had called for trading halts before today’s stock market opening.

Keppel Corp will also hold a remaining 20% stake each in SPH Reit and Keppel Reit.

According to a media statement, SPH shareholders will receive $0.668 in cash, as well as 0.596 Keppel Reit units and 0.782 SPH Reit units per share.

Offer dependent on media restructuring approval

The offer is actually subject to the media restructuring that SPH first announced on 6 May.

 

Under the arrangement, SPH will transfer its media assets to a non-profit.

The transfer is to be approved at an extraordinary general meeting, which ST reports may be held this month or in Sep.

If approved, the media restructuring should finish by the end of the year, and Keppel’s privatisation will also conclude after.

Move comes after strategic review

SPH said today that there was a comprehensive review of the group’s options.

They included:

  • maintaining the status quo
  • monetisation of certain assets
  • a partial sale
  • privatisation of SPH, post media structuring

The board eventually decided on privatisation to “maximise value and minimise disruption for shareholders”.

Historic moment for SPH

SPH was first listed in 1984. By 2021, however, the company has seen drastic losses.

It is unclear if SPH’s current property and aged care arms will undergo changes after privatisation.

But this is definitely a historic moment for the company, albeit one that won’t affect its media business since they’ll become separate entities.

Have news you must share? Get in touch with us via email at news@mustsharenews.com.

Featured image adapted from Google Maps.

Jonathan Yee

Jonathan is a bedroom headbanger. His Kobo is never far from him.

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