ECONOMYNEXT- Sri Lanka's Weligama Hotel Properties Limited (WHPL) is being sold to Singapore's Hotel Properties Limited (HPL) for 22.63 million US dollars, with the central bank managed Employees' Provident Fund (EPF) signing the deal, the buyer said.
WHPL owns a 198-room 5-star hotel in Weligama, which is managed by the international hotel chain Marriott.
HPL disclosed on the Singapore Stock Exchange that its subsidiary HPL Properties (West Asia) Pte Ltd has entered into a purchase agreement with WHPL's parent East West Properties Plc, Asia 2000 Investment Inc and the Central Bank of Sri Lanka to purchase all 405.2 million issued shares of WHPL.
The EPF owns 45 million shares in WHPL, a 11.10 percent stake.
The EPF stake was bought for 405 million rupees, or 9 rupees a share in 2014, and its book value was the same as at 31 December 2018, according to EPF data.
The central bank has been delaying the sale of WHPL to HPL to obtain a valuation for the shares it owns, after the deal was announced in March 2018.
The sale to HPL is at 9.77 rupees a share, assuming a rupee to US dollar conversion rate of 175 (Rupee closed at 174.60/75 to the US dollar in the spot market on Thursday).
East West Properties, and 2000 Investments are both controlled by businessman Nahil Wijesuriya. (Colombo/Apr12/2019)