SINGAPORE (Dec 4): Malayan Banking has granted a third deadline extension to Hyflux in its search for a buyer for the loss-making Tuaspring water and power plant.

The creditor deadline will be extended to Dec 28 from Nov 29, Hyflux announced in a regulatory filing on Tuesday.

In the original deal reached with Maybank in July, Hyflux had until Oct 15 to execute a binding agreement with a successful bidder for Tuaspring.

Hyflux said to mull seeking court protection for creditor talks

Hyflux granted 6-month protection against creditors; seeking $200 mil in rescue financing for projects

Hyflux applies for court protection to restructure debts

At that time, Maybank had agreed to hold off on enforcement proceedings against Tuaspring, its properties and its assets.

Although the extension has been approved, Hyflux warns that the original terms of the agreement still apply. This includes Maybank's right to terminate the collaboration agreement if the new deadline is breached.

As part of the initial restructuring plans, Hyflux founder Olivia Lum had wanted to sell Tuaspring at a price no lower than its book value as at end March of $1.47 billion.

However, Sembcorp Industries emerged the only approved bidder for the project but with an offer that was lower than its book value, reported Bloomberg.

Sembcorp, YTL said to eye pursuing $1.5 bil Hyflux plant

To Hyflux’s relief, a white knight in the form of SM Investments -- consisting of the Salim Group and Medco Group from Indonesia -- came to the rescue of Hyflux with a $400 million equity injection, in exchange for a 60% stake. They also offered a shareholder's loan of $130 million and a loan of $30 million.

Hyflux gets $530 mil lifeline from Indonesia's Salim and Medco groups

With the rescue package, Hyflux and SM Investments are in talks to Maybank to terminate Tuaspring’s voluntary sale.

To raise more funds, Hyflux recently sold its 50% stake in an Indonesian bottled water vendor for $32 million, recording a loss of $300,000 against the net asset value of its shareholding.

Hyflux liquidates Indonesian asset for $32 mil in race to restructure debt

Trading of shares in Hyflux remain suspended.