Lafarge Malayan Cement Bhd said its Kedah Cement Holdings Bhd unit will sell a 49 per cent stake in United Cement Pte Ltd, a Singapore company, to Pan United Industries Pte Ltd. Pan United, a Singapore company, will pay a cash sum of MYR21.1m for the stake. The amount is more than Kedah Cement’s original MYR8.6m purchase of the stake in 1995. Pan United already owns a 51 per cent stake in United Cement. Proceeds of the sale will be used to reduce group borrowings, Lafarge Malayan said in a statement to the stock exchange.
The company noted it inherited the 49 per cent stake in United Cement when it acquired Kedah Cement in June 1999. "Being a minority shareholder in United Cement, the group’s ability to influence the strategic direction of the business is limited," Lafarge Malayan said, adding that the stake isn’t strategic to its operations.