KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 13 — Sime Darby Bhd is keen on investing in the next stage of growth to build on its newly acquired Gough Group Ltd’s leadership position in the New Zealand and Australian markets.
Through its indirect unit, Sime Darby (NZ) Holdings Limited, Sime Darby has entered into a share purchase agreement with Gough Holdings Ltd to acquire a 100 per cent stake in Gough Group for NZ$211 million or RM572 million.
The New Zealand-based Gough Group has the Caterpillar dealership with service territory in the country and interests in the transport and materials handling business in New Zealand and Australia.
In a statement today, Sime Darby said the Gough Group transaction would be the largest for the conglomerate since the pure-play restructuring exercise in 2017.
“It provides a rare opportunity for us to enhance our relationship with Caterpillar, and gain exposure to the construction and forestry sectors in New Zealand, further reinforcing Sime Darby Industrial’s footprint in the Asia Pacific region,” it said.
“The Gough Group’s transport and material handling portfolio will complement Sime Darby Motors’ commercial truck business in New Zealand, enable growth in aftersales operations and broaden our suite of franchises, essentially strengthening our position in Australasia,” Sime Darby’s group chief executive officer Datuk Jeffri Salim Davidson was quoted as saying.
Gough Group grew its revenue by more than 18 per cent in 2018 to NZ$540 million (RM1.46 billion) from the previous year, driven by improvements in sales for both its Caterpillar, and transport and material handling businesses.
Sime Darby noted that the transaction would be fully funded by bank borrowings, on a cash-free and debt-free basis and is subject to New Zealand’s Overseas Investment Office approval and the typical completion conditions.
The deal is expected to be completed by September 30, 2019.
At 1.48pm shares of Sime Darby fell three sen to RM2.16 with 944,100 shares transacted. — Bernama