SINGAPORE (May 29): On May 22, Kwong Yong Sin, former group managing director at Silverlake Axis, the provider of software for banks, bought 250,000 shares from the open market at an average price of 22.5 cents.

Kwong stepped down from the post last June, but remains as an executive director in the company.

He now holds a direct stake of 2.15 million. His wife Madam Khoo Beng Gaik owns nearly 19 million shares of her own. That gives Kwong a total stake of roughly 21.1 million shares, or 0.816% stake. Goh Peng Ooi, the group executive chairman, remains the largest shareholder of Silverlake Axis with a stake of some 66%.

Since last November, Silverlake Axis has been buying back shares regularly. On Nov 18, it bought back 675,400 shares at 43.37 cents each. The most recent buyback was made on April 21 when the company bought back 728,900 shares at 25.88 cents each. Under the share buyback mandate that took effect from Oct 24, 2019, Silverlake Axis had bought back a total of nearly 55.7 million shares, which is equivalent to just over 2% of its share base.

On May 18, Silverlake Axis announced it had won a series of contracts totalling RM63 million ($20.5 million) from 15 customers. The contracts, to be delivered in the coming 12 to 18 months, vary from enhancements of existing software to maintenance and support services.

In 3QFY2020 ended March 31, Silverlake Axis’ earnings dropped by half to RM25.6 million. Revenue in the same period dipped by 2% y-o-y to RM151.7 million.

Starburst Holdings

Edward Lim Chin Wah, executive chairman of Starburst Holdings, the provider of anti-ricochet ballistic protection systems, on May 20 bought 18,100 shares on the open market. He paid $6,235.50, which works out to an average of just over 34 cents per share. Lim now holds some 90.1 million shares, or 37.03% of the company. On March 16, the company announced it had won a $40.9 million contract —its largest ever — to build a shooting range over the next two years.

Prior to Lim’s own purchase, the company had sporadically bought back its shares in several transactions over the past couple of months. On March 24, it bought 261,900 shares at prices ranging between 32 cents and 36.5 cents. The most recent was on April 3, when it bought back 9,700 shares at an average price of 33 cents.

The company’s current share buyback mandate took effect from April 25, 2019. A total of 777,500 shares have been bought back since then.

In FY2019 ended Dec 31, 2019, Starburst’s net loss narrowed to $2.4 million from $4.2 million in the previous year. Revenue in the same period increased by 29.3% to $9.2 million.

Jardine Matheson

Directors of Jardine Matheson have been buying shares of their company too. On May 11, John Witt, who joined the board as group finance director in 2016, bought 22,000 shares at an average price of around US$44.1. On May 20, Witt bought some more shares again. He paid an average of about US$42.8 for 25,000 shares.

On May 18, Alex Newbigging, one of the executive directors, bought 12,000 shares at US$44.2. He joined the group back in 1995 and was appointed to the board in 2017.

Besides the directors buying shares, the company had bought back its own shares too. On May 26, it spent US$17 million to buy back 414,500 shares at around US$41 each.