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MK Restaurant to list on SET in mid-August

MK Restaurant will list on the Stock Exchange of Thailand on August 15, according to a report.

The company has set a range of Bt45-Bt49 for its initial public offering price. The actual price will be finalised soon. The IPO proceeds will be used for branch expansion, which the company expects would need Bt500 million to Bt600 million, and for a production plant, which will need Bt1 billion to set up.



New look for CFG

CFG Services Co, a lender under the brand Srisawad Ngern Tid Lor (Money on Wheels), has spent more than Bt100 million to give its branches and logo a fresh look.

The new image is aimed at reinforcing brand awareness and differentiating the company from competitors.

Managing director Tanyapong Thamavaranukupt said yesterday that the company had also deployed a new uniform for employees and launched its fifth commercial promoting all ranges of refinancing products.

The company this year targets outstanding loans of Bt9.3 billion and 300 branches in Bangkok and upcountry, up by 50 branches.



Kasikorn Leasing eyes pickups, big bikes

Kasikorn Leasing is turning to pickup trucks and big bikes after demand for passenger vehicles faded because of the expiration of the first-car-buyer programme.

Since the automobile industry is likely to experience a slowdown, KLeasing will focus on customers buying pickup trucks, larger vehicles for business transport and medium-sized vehicles, all of which are in high demand.

The lender will also tap the fast-growing luxury-motorcycle market as new models have recently been launched by several brands, managing director Akaranant Thitasirivit said yesterday.

The company lent Bt37.76 billion in the first half of this year. Its outstanding loans reached Bt84.94 billion, or 87.75 per cent of the target of Bt96.79 billion, while its non-performing loans stood at 0.82 per cent. Its earnings for the first half totalled Bt232 million, while its net profit after loan loss provisioning amounted to Bt140 million.



Mama exam tutorial

Saha Pathanapibul, distributor of Mama instant noodles, is ready to take to new heights its long-standing and successful tutorial programme to help students prepare for the university entrance examination.

The 16th Mama tutorial programme will be held from October 13-18. The live tutoring sessions will take place at the same time in four regions, at the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, Chiang Mai University, Khon Kaen University and Prince of Songkla University.

Students living in remote areas or unable to attend the live sessions can also study via broadband telecast sessions at more than 600 venues in participating schools and universities in all 77 provinces.

This year's programme promises to feature 30 tutors eager to provide students with

tips and tactics in cracking even the most difficult questions in the exam. There will also be a special programme with an emphasis on English to better equip students for the formation of the Asean Economic Community.

For the first time, Mama will upgrade the library of the school with the largest number of students participating in this year's programme.

The project is expected to attract more than 500,000 students nationwide.



BOT panel likely to select new board chairman next week

The Bank of Thailand board's new chairman is expected to be selected at a nomination committee meeting on August 6.

There are three candidates for the position, two of them nominated by BOT Governor Prasarn Trairatvorakul and the other by Finance Ministry permanent secretary Areepong Bhoocha-oom.

"All have passed the qualifications required [by the Bank of Thailand Act]. Therefore, the committee can call for a meeting [to select the new chairman]. There should be no difficulty about this," said BOT Assistant Governor Chanchai Boonritchaisri, who also acts as the committee's secretary.

The selected name will be submitted to Finance Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong, before being forwarded for Cabinet approval.

The new chairman will replace Virabongsa Ramangkura, whose term ends today. He turns 70 tomorrow.





PTTGC shares fall again

PTT Global Chemical shares yesterday fell for the second consecutive trading day to close at Bt70,down Bt3.25 or 4.44 per cent from Monday’s close, following last week's oil spill off Koh Samet, in Rayong province.

Even though the extent of the damage is still unknown, brokerages are expecting the worst, with PTTGC's profit being hit this quarter.

An analyst at Kiatnakin Securities said the costs related to the oil spill would be realised in this quarter, and would impact on profitability.

Even if PTTGC receives insurance claims for business interruption, the company itself might take longer to get third-party compensation to the tune of US$50 million (about Bt1.5 billion), said the analyst.

If the company does not realise the insurance claims, the spill will affect its profit this year and the securities house might consider revising down the net-profit forecast from the current level of Bt35.71 billion.

Bualuang Securities noted in its research that PTTGC's share price was under pressure from concern over future compensation claims.

However, Capital Nomura Securities is positive on the prospects for PTTGC, as it believes the damage is under control, citing in its research that PTTGC can claim under its insurance coverage for an oil loss of up to $35,000. The situation will not, therefore, significantly affect the firm's financial results, it said.





SEC seeks comment on rules

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is seeking public comment on draft amendments to the rules governing derivatives investment of provident funds with a view to increasing investment channels and opportunities for provident funds to seek more returns.

The amendments are in line with international pension standards and adhere to the principle of assets stability and risk diversification of investment to safeguard provident funds set up with the objective of retirement savings from high-risk exposure, said the SEC. This aims to allow management companies to take a position as counterparties in derivatives transactions for provident funds with an objective other than hedging.




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