Wednesday, 12 September 2012

The Nomad Group buys a hotel, meagre disclosure

The Nomad Group made an announcement to buy a company owning the Grand Paradise Hotel in Penang  for RM 25 million.

The hotel was indeed for sale (asking price 26.3 million) as we can see from this advertisement at iProperty's website.

From the skimpy information available it looks like the owners of the company invested RM 3 million, borrowed RM 9 million from a bank and bought the hotel in 2005 for RM 12 million. If the announced sales would go through, then the bank would receive its money back, and the owners RM 16 million for a cool profit of RM 13 million. Not bad, especially given that the hotel made a loss of RM 98,932 over the year ended 31st March 2011.

It is very disappointing that no later numbers are given, we are now 1.5 years later, surely the company can give more recent updates about profit and revenue, even unaudited numbers would be helpful. Also, revenue numbers should really be included.

Bursa Malaysia asked for additional information (good) and this is what The Nomad Group answered.

"The exact age of the hotel building is not known to the Vendors and no further information is available on the age of the hotel building."

I can not recall I have ever read a similar answer, surely there must be a register where that information is kept. Otherwise the previous S&P agreements will contain the information. But at the very least, there should be an explanation for this absence of this important information, together with an estimate of the age.

"There was no formal valuation by an independent valuer carried out on the Hotel Property."

The proposed acquisition is not subject to the approval of the shareholders or the authorities (only to the bank who carries the loan). Although that might be right, it would have been more appropriate for the shareholders to give additonal information on which the price is based and to call for an independent valuer, RM 25 million is a large amount of money.

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