SINGAPORE (April 18): When Malaysian engineering firm Serba Dinamik Holdings became the largest shareholder in systems integrator CSE Global last year, both parties talked about how they could work on projects together.

But one year on, no joint venture projects have been announced, as the companies are still trying to better understand each other’s capability.

In April 2018, Serba paid eight CSE shareholders 45 cents per share, a 15% premium over the market price then, for a combined stake of 24.8%. Both companies, with their engineering focus, are seen as complementary in terms of market reach.

The market had reacted positively to Serba Dinamik’s majority stake, with CSE’s shares increasing by 7% on April 15, 2018; it had been performing poorly since the oil and gas slump in 2014.

While joint ventures with Serba Dinamik have yet to materialise, CSE was able to generate earnings growth for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2018 by delivering projects it won on its own.

See: CSE Global swings back into the black with 4Q earnings of $4.9 mil; proposes 1.5-cent final dividend

Unlike many other Singapore-listed engineering companies that are active across the region, CSE’s largest market is in the US. Now, it operates in the Permian Basin and Eagle Ford in Texas.

Even as it expands overseas, CSE is not neglecting its home market. The company is keen to benefit from the government’s vision of turning Singapore into a smart city.

Find out more in this week issue of The Edge Singapore (Issue 878, week of Apr 22), on sale now at newsstands. Subscribers can log in and read the story or click here to subscribe.