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Eddie Ong emerges as substantial unitholder in KIP REIT, confirms The Edge report

KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 14): Datuk Eddie Ong Choo Meng (pictured) has emerged as the substantial unitholder in KIP Real Estate Investment Trust (KIP REIT), after acquiring a 9.895% stake in the group.

This confirms a report from The Edge Malaysia weekly earlier this week, which stated that Eddie could emerge as a substantial unitholder of the REIT by taking over the stakes held by the late Datuk Chew Lak Seong and KIP REIT’s co-founder and non-independent executive director Datuk Ong Kok Liong.

Eddie, via his 90%-held Hextar Rubber Sdn Bhd, bought the stake comprising 50 million units via a direct business transaction which took place last Thursday (Sept 9), according to a bourse filing yesterday.

Eddie already has a diverse portfolio of businesses, including glove manufacturing, agrochemicals, furniture, plastic and industrial products.

The Edge weekly said Eddie’s move into the retail industry is seen as intriguing, coming at a time when the retail sector is severely affected by the pandemic.

According to the report, sources said Eddie’s entry into KIP REIT will allow him to act as a sponsor and potentially inject his portfolio of factories and warehouses into the REIT.

It was reported yesterday that KIP REIT’s substantial unitholder Datin Teoh Siew Chin, who is the wife of the late Chew, has disposed of 20.13 million units in the REIT in an off-market transaction, leaving her with a direct stake of 4.86%.

Kok Liong also disposed of 20 million units directly owned by him.

Post disposal, Kok Liong’s direct stake in the company amounted to 13.55%, or 68.48 million, while his indirect stake stood at 2.74%, or 13.87 million.

Both Teoh's and Kong Liong’s transactions took place last Thursday.

At the time of writing, KIP REIT units were unchanged at 84 sen, giving the group a market capitalisation of RM419.41 million.

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