☕️ A 180-year old Norwegian Oil & Gas company investing into Bitcoin

Ryde, the 'first profitable' ride-hailing company from Singapore to IPO. Malaysia's unemployment rate at 7-month high of 4.9%. The USD7 mil price tag of Prince Harry and Megan Markle's interview.

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1. MARKET SUMMARY


2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE

517,140 doses of Covid-19 vaccine have been received by the Malaysian government.

4.9% — the unemployment rate in Malaysia for January 2021, a seven-month high with number of unemployed persons rising from 782,500 to 772,900.

USD 7 million — the cost of the interview of the out-of-favour royal couple, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle with Oprah Winfrey.


3. COVID-19 SUMMARY


4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾

  1. BN’s leader Ahmad Zahid is currently facing corruption, abuse of power and money laundering charges involving his charity foundation, Yayasan Akalbudi. The High Court heard that the withdrawal of RM17.9 million of funds from Yayasan Akalbudi was a criminal breach of trust as it did not get consent from the board of trustees.

  2. Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is currently in Saudi Arabia on a four-day official visit started on last Saturday at the invitation of the Saudi Arabian King, King Salam bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud. Our PM had also took the opportunity to perform umrah, describing it as responsibility instead of a personal privilege.

  3. Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) is concerned over potential cost overruns and delays in the completion of the USD6.6 billion Coastal GasLink (CGL) pipeline in Canada. The delays are mainly due to Covid-19 protocols.

  4. Hextar Global Bhd which is in the chemical business acquires the Chempro Group of Companies for RM138 million coupled with a profit guarantee of RM39 million over the next 3 years. The move by Hextar is seen as a diversification into speciality cleaning chemicals business segment.

  5. Women’s doubles pair Pearly Tan-M. Thinaah clinched the Swiss Open title in their 10th start on the World Tour and 21 months into their partnership. Kudos to them for being the first-ever Malaysian women to become champions since the tournament’s inception in 1955.

  1. Malaysian tycoon Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Albukhary offered to acquire a major stake in FGV Holdings Bhd by injecting his plantation assets into the company for new shares back in October 2020. However, FGV turned it offer down as its Felda looks to conclude the privatisation exercise by March 15 2021.


5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎

  1. Deliveroo, the food delivery giant from London that is backed by Amazon, has started the process of filing for IPO to list on the London Stock Exchange in April 2021. 

    Some highlights on its numbers:

    1/ FY2020 losses of GBP223.7 mil (USD309 mil) vs FY2019 losses of GBP317 mil (USD438 mil). No revenue amount disclosed.

    2/ Serves 6 million customers, 115,000 restaurants, takeaways and grocery stores, 100,000 rides in 800 locations in 12 markets.

    3/ It has been profitable on an ‘Adjusted EBITDA basis’ (whatever that means for a loss-making startup to look ‘profitable’)

    4/ Gross transaction volume grew by 64% to GBP4.1 bil (USD5.67 bil)

  2. A less-known ride-hailing startup from Singapore, Ryde, has announced that it will be listing on Singapore Exchange’s (SGX) Catalist. Its CEO, Terence Zou said that Ryde aims to be the ‘first profitable ride-hailing technology company in the SGX’. It turned profitable in the fourth quarter of 2020. 

    Highlights from its announcement:

    1/ Aims for a SGD200 mil market capitalisation.

    2/ To recruit more than 100 staff in engineering, design, operations and digital marketing in the next 3 years.

    3/ Gross Transaction Value (GTV) increased 4x during the Covid-19 pandemic, and 30% you user growth. It aims to hit SGD120 mil GTV in 2021.

    4/ To date, it has facilitated more than 16 mil in bookings and has been downloaded more than 700,000 times

    Malaysia needs Ryde here to break the monopoly of Grab.

  3. American Airlines (AA) is planning to raise USD5 billion in bonds backed with a one-of-a-kind collateral unique to its industry - frequent flyer programme. The bond will be utilised to pay back federal loans that were extended to it during the pandemic.

    Airlines monetize its frequent flyer programme by selling air miles to banks, which customers earn by using their credit cards. Back in Sep 2020, Delta Airlinesraised a record USD9 bil in debt backed by its SkyMIles loyalty programme. AA has a total debt of USD41 bil on its balance sheet, +23% from the year earlier. 

  4. MacKenzie Scott, the ex-wife of Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, has marriedDan Jewett, a science teacher at a private school in Seattle. Following her divorce in 2019, MacKenzie has dedicated her resources towards philanthropic activities with more than USD4 billion of her fortune being given away so far. She’s amongst the richest women in the world after receiving 4% of Amazon shares after the divorce. 

  5. From April onwards, Thailand will reduce the mandatory quarantine period from 14 to 7 days for foreigners arriving in the country that have been vaccinated within 3 months of the travel period and to show negative Covid-19 test results within 3 days of their departure. Those that have not been inoculated will be quarantined for 10 days. Thailand’s flight limits, strict entry requirements and mandatory quarantine for all arrivals have been central to its success in keeping the number of Covid-19 cases and deaths low at just over 26,000 cases and 85 deaths

  6. Another 2 listed companies have started adopting Bitcoin for its treasury reserves. Chinese beauty and photo editing app, Meitu (market cap: USD1.42 bil), has announced  its purchase of 379 bitcoin (USD17.9 mil) and 15,000 ether (USD22.1 mil) for a total of USD40 mil

    Aker ASA, 180-year old oil & gas solutions company listed on Oslo Bors with a market cap of USD6 bil has issued a press release that it will set up a new entity called Seetee, with 500 mil Norwegian Kronos (USD58 mil) to invest in Bitcoin with a purchase of 1,170 bitcoin.

    The oil billionaire behind Aker, Kjell Inge Rokke, the 2nd richest man in Norway with an estimated USD5.4 bil net worth, wrote in its shareholder letter that ‘Bitcoin may still go to zero. But it can also become a core of a new monetary architecture’. 

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