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Buybacks, Director Transactions Resume at a Lively Pace

Buybacks, Director Transactions Resume at a Lively Pace

Posted March 14, 2023 at 10:20 am
Singapore Exchange
Share buybacks by primary-listed stocks

For the five trading sessions that spanned Mar 3 to 9, the Straits Times Index (STI) declined 0.6 per cent with the Hang Seng Index dropping 2.3 per cent and the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI falling 1.0 per cent.

Institutions were net sellers of Singapore stocks over the five sessions with S$284 million of net outflow. DBS, UOB, Sembcorp Marine, OCBC and CapitaLand Ascendas Reit led the net institutional outflow for the five sessions.

Meanwhile, Genting Singapore, Sembcorp Industries, Jardine Matheson, Singapore Airlines, Yangzijiang Shipbuilding (Holdings) led the net institutional inflow for the five sessions.

Share buybacks

There were 19 primary-listed companies conducting share buybacks over the five trading sessions through to Mar 9, with a total consideration of S$10.6 million.

OCBC again led the consideration tally, buying 400,000 shares at an average price of S$12.59 per share.

Catalist-listed Acesian Partners bought back 4,929,300 shares at an average price S$0.056 per share. The stock has continued to rank among the 100 most traded Singapore stocks so far this year, following its significant increase in trading turnover in 2022 which coincided with an improvement in the group’s business volume and pent-up demand, progressive delivery of the multiple significant new sales orders, ramp-up of its production capacity and improvement in its environment control systems business.

Director and substantial shareholder transactions

The five trading sessions saw close to 80 changes to director interests and substantial shareholdings filed for close to 40 primary-listed stocks. This included 20 company director acquisitions with one disposal filed, while substantial shareholders filed 13 acquisitions and one disposal.

AEM Holdings

On Mar 2, the Employees Provident Fund Board’s (EPF) deemed substantial shareholding in AEM Holdings crossed above the 9.00 per cent threshold.

Previously, the EPF’s deemed substantial shareholding in AEM Holdings crossed above the 8.00 per cent threshold in October 2022, and above the 7.00 per cent threshold in July 2022, and above the 6.00 per cent threshold and 5.00 per cent substantial shareholder threshold in June 2022.

Wilmar International

On Mar 9, Wilmar International chairman and CEO, Kuok Khoon Hong, increased his deemed interest in the company. HPRY Holdings, in which Kuok has a deemed interest, acquired one million shares at an average price of S$3.94 per share.

Kuok maintains a 13.17 per cent total interest in Wilmar International and is overall in charge of the management of the group with a particular focus on new business developments.

XMH Holdings

On Mar 6, XMH Holdings chairman and managing director Tan Tin Yeow acquired 1,241,825 shares at S$0.27 per share. With a consideration of S$335,293 this increased his direct interest in the company from 42.25 per cent to 43.38 per cent.

Tan has gradually increased his direct interest in the diesel engine, propulsion and power generating solutions provider from 41.27 per cent prior to Aug 25, 2022.

He was appointed managing director in 1991, and chairman in September 2016. He bears overall responsibility for the group as well as strategy formulation, corporate planning, business development and potential acquisitions. On Dec 12, XMH Holdings announced that the SGX-ST has no objection to the company’s application for an extension of time to Dec 4, 2023 to comply with Listing Rule 1315 to exit the Watch-list subject to the satisfaction of conditions which were met by the company as set out in its announcement on Dec 2.


On March 1, UOB chairman Wong Kan Seng acquired 3,700 shares at S$29.84 per share. With a consideration of S$110,408, this increased his direct interest in UOB to 36,170 shares.

Wong was appointed to the board of UOB in July 2017 and assumed the role of chairman in February 2018.

He is also the chairman of CapitaLand Group, CLA Real Estate Holdings, and a director of Bo’ao Forum for Asia.


On March 6, Japfa executive director Renaldo Santosa acquired 500,000 shares at an average price of S$0.24 per share. With a consideration of S$121,718 this increased his total interest in the pure play animal protein producer from 60.70 per cent to 60.72 per cent.

Santosa was appointed executive director on Dec 1, 2022. Prior to this appointment, he was the alternate director to executive chairman, the late Handojo Santosa.

Santosa is also the head of strategic projects at Annona Technical Service, a subsidiary of Japfa, to identify and develop strategic projects for the group and ensure that the projects are aligned with the group’s strategic directions and objectives.

Santosa started his career with the Japfa Group in September 2011 as business development executive immediately after his graduation.

Over the years, he was promoted to the position of head of business development and strategy in 2017, and to his current role in 2022.

Japfa operates a vertically integrated business across its entire value chain and employs over 38,000 people across Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, Myanmar, India, and Bangladesh.

JB Foods

On Mar 2, JB Foods CEO Tey How Keong acquired 120,800 shares at S$0.50 per share. With a consideration of S$60,400, this increased his total interest in the global cocoa ingredient producer from 46.89 per cent to 46.93 per cent.

This followed acquisitions of 36,000 shares at S$0.48 per share on Oct 27 and 113,400 shares at an average price of S$0.496 per share between Sep 29 and 30.

Tey was appointed to the board in January 2012. With his 25 years plus of experience in the cocoa business, he is responsible for the overall strategic, management and business development of the group.

Lincotrade & Associates Holdings

On Mar 3, Lincotrade & Associates Holdings substantial shareholder Tan Chee Khoon bought 454,545 shares at S$0.11 per share. With a consideration of S$50,000 this increased his direct interest in the Catalist-listed integrated fit-out specialist from 13.21 per cent to 13.48 per cent.

Tan joined Lincotrade & Associates Pte Ltd in March 1999 as a junior site supervisor and was subsequently promoted to site supervisor in August 1999, site coordinator in January 2000, project manager in September 2005, general manager in January 2008 and became a shareholder in July 2015.

As operations director, Tan is responsible for the company’s tendering and project management matters.

On Feb 13, Lincotrade & Associates Holdings reported its H1FY23 (ended Dec 31) revenue increased 119.3 per cent from H1FY22 mainly due to higher revenue recognised for the commercial and show flats segments, partially offset by lower revenue contribution from the residential segment. The group’s order book stood at approximately S$78.0 million as announced on Feb 13, 2023.

Abundance International

On Mar 2, Abundance International managing director Sam Kok Yin acquired one million shares of the Catalist-listed stock at a consideration of S$26,000. This took his total interest in the company from 20.64 per cent to 20.72 per cent.

Sam is responsible for the overall business operations and management of the group’s business, particularly in investment-related matters.

On Feb 27, Abundance International reported that the 20 per cent lower revenue for its FY22 (ended 31 Dec) was mainly due to a decrease in average selling price of the chemical products, whereas the lower profitability was mainly due to a significant net gain on a disposal made via its wholly owned subsidiary, Orient-Salt Chemicals (Shanghai) in FY21.

The company’s businesses comprise chemicals, investments and print and paper management.

Prime US Reit

Following, the retirement of Prime US Reit Management CEO Barbara Ruth Cambon, Harmeet Singh Bedi has been appointed as CEO of the manager with effect from Mar 8.

Singh was previously deputy CEO and CFO of the manager and maintains a 0.06 per cent direct interest in Prime US Reit.

Based in Singapore, Bedi works closely with the board and management team to define and execute the overall corporate and growth strategy for Prime, while overseeing its strategic development, day-to-day management, and operations.

He has close to 30 years of investment and commercial banking experience in Singapore, Hong Kong, and India.

Prime US Reit offers investors unique exposure to a high-quality portfolio of 14 Class A freehold office properties which are strategically located in 13 key US office markets.

Prime US Reit’s portfolio has a total carrying value of US$1.54 billion as at Dec 31, 2022.

Inside Insights is a weekly column on The Business Times, read the original version.

Originally Posted March 13, 2023 – Buybacks, director transactions resume at a lively pace

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