Malaysia's Ananda plans $1 billion pay-TV IPO by end-September: sources

KUALA LUMPUR Fri Jun 15, 2012 7:45am EDT

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KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - Malaysian tycoon Ananda Krishnan plans to re-list Astro All Asia Networks by end-September in a deal that would give the pay-TV firm a market capitalization of up to 15 billion ringgit ($4.7 billion), according to two sources with direct knowledge of the flotation.

The initial public offering (IPO) plan by Ananda, Malaysia's second-richest man, comes on the heels of a $2.8 billion sale of his power assets and proposal to hive off a stake in his satellite operator MEASAT Global in March.

"We are looking at the week from September 17," said one of the sources, who declined to be identified as the details of the IPO are not public yet.

"Our target is to achieve a market capitalization of between 11 and 15 billion ringgit, hopefully everything goes smoothly," the source added.

The second source said the book-building process will start in August or September.

Astro officials declined to comment when contacted.

If the IPO goes well, it will join a stable of listed Ananda-linked firms such as telco Maxis (MXSC.KL) and oil and gas services provider Bumi Armada (BUAB.KL) that have a combined market capitalization of about 60 billion ringgit.

Ananda recently mandated CIMB Investment Bank to advise him on Astro's listing in a deal expected to raise around $1 billion, a source with direct knowledge of the deal told Reuters last week.

The IPO could well follow the listing of Malaysia's IGB Corp Bhd (IGBS.KL) retail real estate investment trust by early September, a deal which is expected to raise up to 700 million ringgit.

CIMB (CIMB.KL) led Astro's delisting in 2010 in a deal that valued it at around $2.8 billion. The investment bank also handled its original IPO in 2003, along with Goldman Sachs (GS.N), DBS (DBSM.SI) and UBS (UBSN.VX).

Malaysia's IPO market has outshone most other Asian countries this year as a large domestic pension fund system and the dominant role of local investors have shielded it from global volatility.

Felda Global Ventures Holdings (FGVH.KL), the world's third-largest palm oil company by acreage, priced its $3.1 billion IPO late on Wednesday near the top of an indicative range, buoyed by strong demand from domestic investors to help it counter a recent global trend of failed listings.

Hospital management firm IHH Healthcare's up-to-$2 billion IPO has secured a strong cast of cornerstone investors ahead of its pricing slated for July 12.

(Reporting By Yantoultra Ngui; editing by Stuart Grudgings)

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