Intouch gains 0.77% on Cedar divestment
InTouch, formerly Shin Corp, enjoyed an increase in its share price after Cedar Holdings' partial divestment to boost the company's free float.The stock gained Bt0.50, or 0.77 per cent, to Bt65.75 yesterday, with 30 million shares changing hands, compared with trading levels of between 5 million and 27 million shares over the past few weeks. On Thursday, when Cedar Holdings' share sale increased the free-float ratio to nearly 50 per cent per cent of outstanding shares, 425.4 million shares changed hands.
Securities houses anticipated that the higher free-float ratio would boost the stock's liquidity and share price.
According to Asia Plus Securities, Cedar's share sale on Thursday raised the proportion of InTouch's freely floated shares to 45.1 per cent of total shares from 34.8 per cent. This is close to the 50-per-cent level seen in 2006. This makes InTouch's level of freely floated shares one of the highest in the Stock Exchange of Thailand, something that is expected to attract more local and foreign investors.
Tisco Securities said the share sale was in line with Temasek Holding's gradual reduction of its holdings in the regional telecommunications sector, adding that it would take time before Temasek made a new round of big-lot share sales in InTouch. Cedar's previous sale of InTouch shares, totalling 200 million shares, took place last January. Tisco believes Temasek still wants to maintain its controlling stake in InTouch.
Temasek, Singapore's state investment arm, controls InTouch via two affiliates, Aspen Holdings and Cedar Holdings. InTouch informed the SET on Thursday that Cedar sold 330 million shares, or 10.3 per cent of InTouch's total shares. About 20 per cent of the sold shares went to Thai investors, with the rest going to Thai NVDR Co, a trustee. After the transaction, Cedar was left with 428 million shares, or a 13.3-per-cent stake, down from 29.66 per cent as of last August.
InTouch said it asked another major shareholder, Aspen, whether it also intended to sell its shares in the company. Aspen replied that it had no immediate plan to do so and remained confident in the business and management of the company. Aspen's holdings remain at 41.62 per cent.
Temasek took over Shin from the Shinawatra family for Bt73 billion in 2006.