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Guocoland shares offers 'compelling' value; portfolio focus sharpened with EWI divestment, says DBS

The Edge Singapore
The Edge Singapore  • 2 min read
Guocoland shares offers 'compelling' value; portfolio focus sharpened with EWI divestment, says DBS
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DBS Group Research has described Guocoland's divestment of its stake in KL-listed EcoWorld International as a strategic move to signal a sharper portfolio and management focus.

On May 10, Guocoland announced it has sold its entire 27% stake in EWI for $61 million, which is a 22% premium over its carrying value of $50 million.

One of the known buyers is another Malaysia-listed company, Paramount Corporation, which has acquired a 21.54% stake on EWI.

DBS, in its May 13 note, observes that the transacted amount was just 1% of Guocoland's market cap of around $1.8 billion.

However, the divestment highlights its statement of intent to sharpen its focus and portfolio of properties, divesting away non-core assets and redeploying for other higher investments with higher returns. 

DBS, which has kept its "buy" call on this counter, points out that Guocoland's shares, which gained 3% year to date, has outperformed the broader index of developers FSTREH.

See also: Citing revenue and margins growth, Maybank raises Dyna-Mac's target price to 52 cents

Trading at just half its book value and 0.3x P/RNAV, Guocoland offers an upside of 50% to DBS's target price of $2.30 and thus offers "compelling" value.

Catalysts for the stock include strong sales for its residential project launches in Singapore, further divestments of non-core assets and last but not least, the potential re-structuring into a stapled security / REIT. 

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