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BankThai to raise new capital via rights issue

Financial newsThailand's BankThai said on Thursday it planned to sell 6.67 billion new shares in a 1:1 rights issue at a price not lower than 0,66 baht each ($1=33,48 Baht), as part of a plan to boost its capital position.

The share sale would happen after CIMB, second-largest lender in Malaysia, completed its purchase of a 42 percent stake from the Bank of Thailand and all remaining outstanding shares, the bank said in a statement. The share sale, which is subject to approval from shareholders at a meeting on Sept. 3, would double BankThai's registered capital to 50 billion baht ($1.5 billion).

BankThai said it was also waiting for approval from the Finance Ministry to allow foreign investors to hold more than 49 percent stake of the company. In June, CIMB said it would buy the 42 percent stake for about 5.9 billion baht ($176 million) from the Bank of Thailand's rescue arm in order to expand its Southeast Asian presence.

CIMB has said the cost of the deal could rise to about $584 million, including the capital raising exercise and a tender offer to buy the remaining shares from other shareholders, including a 42 percent stake held by a consortium led by U.S. private equity firm TPG Newbridge. BankThai, with 210 billion baht in assets and 87 billion baht in outstanding loans, reported a net loss of 1.87 billion baht in the first six months of this year.

Source: Reuters
Date: 02.08.2008 [181]

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