UAE's Utico submits binding offer to invest in Singapore's Hyflux: CEO

ABU DHABI (Reuters) - Utico FZC has submitted a binding offer to invest S$400 million ($294 million) in Singapore’s indebted water treatment firm Hyflux Ltd, the chief executive of the United Arab Emirates-based utility said on Sunday.

Utico had submitted a non-binding letter of intent this month to invest in the Singaporean firm.

Utico would provide working capital and any urgent interim funding to Hyflux as part of the offer, Richard Menezes said.

Once lauded as a national champion running a strategically important water source for the city-state, Hyflux is now under a court-supervised restructuring process that could wipe out the holdings of tens of thousands of retail investors.

Menezes told Reuters his firm would engage with Singapore’s water agency PUB and retail investors in Hyflux.

“We submitted the binding term sheet last week. We are looking for the right deal that provides all stakeholders a satisfactory position in the company,” he said.

Hyflux is working to finalize the term sheet with Utico and appropriate announcements will be made on a timely basis, the Singapore company said in response to a Reuters query.

On Tuesday, the Singapore High Court prevented a group of banks from being carved out of Hyflux’s debt moratorium to file an application to have Hyflux placed under judicial management.

The court also granted Hyflux a five-day extension on its debt moratorium, originally set for May 24.

Hyflux said on Friday it received another non-binding letter of intent for investment worth S$500 million in the group from Oyster Bay Fund Ltd.

Additional reporting by Aradhana Aravindan in Singapore; Editing by Edmund Blair and Stephen Coates