☕️ 7 Malaysians in Forbes 30 Under 30

HK's biggest phone scam victim lost HKD254.9 mil. Glove maker Kossan's record RM1bil latest quarterly profit. The modest billionaire couple behind Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

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**Testing a new section - For Your Viewing Pleasure**

1. MARKET SUMMARY


2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE

HKD254.9 million — Hong Kong’s biggest phone scam involving 90 year old woman living in mansion on The Peak. The Peak is an exclusive neighbourhood for the rich. Amazing that such a scam can still be pulled off on wealthy individuals - never let your guard down!

119th — Malaysia’s ranking on the 2021 World Press Freedom index. The country fell 18 spots due to the recent anti-fake news law which the index deems the law as allowing the government to impose its own version of truth.

87th day into his presidency — the first time Joe Biden played golf while in office. What about his predecessor, Donald Trump? Day 15th.


3. COVID-19 SUMMARY

  • 95% of frontliners in Malaysia have received their first dose of Covid-19 vaccine.

  • Interstate travel is allowed only for work, medical and educational purposes from Monday to Thursday.


4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾

  1. Kossan Rubber Industries Bhd recorded its highest ever quarterly profit of RM1.04 billion for 1QFY21 ended March 31 2021. EPS ballooned to 40.76 sen compared to 2.53 sen in the previous year. The glove maker declared interim dividend of 12 sen per share, payable May 20 2021.

    Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers Association (MARGMA) forecasts the global demand for glove products to grow between 15% and 20%.

  2. Petronas Gas Bhd said the development of its RM541.07 million 42km gas pipeline project in Pulau Indah is progressing as scheduled based on work done so far. The company has allocated RM1.2 to RM1.3 billion capital expenditure 2021.

  3. Qyira Yusri and Tharma Pillai, co-founders of Undi18 movement have been listed in Forbes’s 2021 “30 under 30 Asia” list under ‘social impact’ section for their efforts in championing youth suffrage in Malaysia. Forbes highlighted the Parlimen Digital initiative of Undi18 was one of the main reasons why the founders got chosen to be on the list. Five other Malaysians have also made the list! See Forbes 30 Under 30 list directory here.

  4. GrabPay users can now finally pump petrol at Shell petrol stations nationwide as payment solutions provider GHL Systems Bhd has enabled GrabPay e-wallet acceptance at the kiosks.

  5. Employee Provident Fund (EPF) has came out with a statement dismissing the rumours that the maximum age qualified for dividend payment is 75 years old. EPF clarified that members will continue to earn dividends for the remaining portion of their EPF savings up to age 100.

  6. The National Registration Department (NRD) has detained a doctor and an agent for being involved in a syndicate falsifying the information of over 200 births since 2009. The MO of the syndicate — offering babies for adoption to childless couples and registering them as their biological children.


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5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎

  1. Japanese researchers from the Riken research institute and University of Tokyo announced that they have developed a testing method to detect Covid-19 that will return results within 5 minutes, as compared to standard polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method which takes more than an hour. This new method would require only a microscopic amount of the virus to detect it and does not involve complicated procedures. This new method, if ever commercialised would be a great boost to the travel industry.

  2. According to sources, Duolingo, the language learning app, has hired bankers to prepare for its IPO as soon as this summer. Founded in 2011 by Luis von Ahn, the app helps users make it easy to learn new languages. It currently offers 100 courses in 39 languages for free, with more than 500 mil downloads and 40 mil monthly active users.

    It has a freemium business model with 96% of its users on the free version. Duolingo was last valued at USD2.4 bil back in November when it raised USD35 mil. Luis has previously sold 2 companies to Google and turned down a job offer personally from Bill Gates even after a 1.5 hour call. An interesting read here on how Duolingo was founded. 

  3. Unlike other pharma executives that have cashed out their shares profiting on the vaccine rally, the billionaire scientist, Ugur Sahin and his wife, Ozlem Tureci, behind the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, has not sold any of their shares since Feb 2020. Notably, Pfizer, BioNTech’s partner in the development of the Covid-19 vaccine, has seen its CEO, Albert Bourla, cashing out 60% of his stock on the very same day Pfizer disclosed that its vaccine is 90% effective. BioNTech and Pfizer partnered to develop and supply 3 bil doses worldwide by year end. 

    Since listing in 2019, BioNTech stock has risen by 900%, valuing Sahin’s 17% stake in the company at USD6.1 bil. Of Turkish descent, Sahin migrated to Germany in the late 60s. Despite his wealth, his family is known to live in a modest apartment near his office and does not own a car. His lifestyle is said to reflect a simple approach to life and he’s known for cycling to office. Bourla described Sahin as a person that  ‘cares only for science. Discussing business is not his cup of tea’.

  4. Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchanges has appointed, Brian Brooks, the former acting head of the Office of the Currency Comptroller (OCC) under the Trump administration, as its CEO for its US arm, Binance.US. OCC is somewhat equivalent to our BNM. he is known to be a crypto-friendly regulator. During his short tenure from May 2020 to Jan, under his watch, he has released on guidance clarifying that banks could provide cryptocurrency custody services and use stablecoins to facilitate payment activities. His priority, as Brooks said, is to the exchange a robust competitor to Coinbase and reinforcing its commitment to regulatory compliance. 

    In another crypto related news, Venmo, the mobile payment app owned by PayPal,  will now allow its 70 mil users to purchase, sell and hold 4 cryptocurrencies - Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin and Ether.


6. FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE 👁👁 (Beta Mode)

  1. Apple just launched its new 24 inch iMac with M1 chip.

  2. Nasa’s Ingenuity taking its maiden flight on Mars

  3. Ingenuity inspired by Leonardo da Vinci in 1489?

  4. Students getting fined RM1,500 immediately for SOP breach but similar offence by ministers and celebrities are always under investigation.

  5. Terrifying missile launch

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