☕️ Ambulance in an emergency blocked to allow VIP motorcade to pass
Kajang hit by flash floods after Monday evening downpour. Uber paid USD6 mil to Beyonce to perform at company's retreat in 2015. Southeast Asia's first F&B unicorn - Indonesia's Kopi Kenangan.
1. MARKET SUMMARY
2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE
Uber gave Beyonce USD6 mil of restricted stock units (RSUs) back in 2015 for her to perform at the company’s retreat back in 2015. Uber’s Chief Business Officer (CBO), Emil Michael, said the performance was a surprise for the employees as they surpassed the goal of hitting GMV of USD10 bil.
21 mil Americans didn’t have enough to eat in early December as pandemic relief payments ran out, and grocery prices rose, according to US Census Bureau.
Spider-Man: No Way Home became the first pandemic-era movie to gross more than USD1 bil at the global box office, according to Comscore. If you’ve watched all the Spider-Man movies previously (including Toby Maguire’s and Andrew Garfield’s), you NEED to watch the latest.
3. COVID-19 SUMMARY
62 Omicron variant cases have been detected in Malaysia as of Dec 24, 2021. Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said 30 were imported infections from Saudi Arabia, which occurred among travellers who returned to Malaysia after performing the Umrah. He added that many of the returnees did not adhere to the home quarantine regulations. Maybe it’s time to take the privilege back.
4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾
Politics & Local
The flood season isn’t over yet. Kajang was hit by flash floods after the downpour on Monday evening. How would the government respond this time? It’s never the government’s fault, it seems. Environment and Water Minister Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man blamed the public for not taking the weather forecasts seriously, leading to unpreparedness.
In Malaysia, the PM’s motorcade is more important than an ambulance in an emergency. A video captured the moment when an ambulance with its sirens on was stopped by police to give way to the PM’s convoy which was heading towards Masjid Al-Mustaqqim, Batu 16 in Hulu Langat.
Selangor Traffic Police issued a statement that the VIP convoy was given priority because allowing the ambulance would have endangered road users if it was allowed to exit the junction. However, the more explanations made, the more ridiculous they sound.
Former Bank Muamalat CEO Mohd Redza Abdul Wahid has apologised to the Agape Community Church and the Wah Chai Association on behalf of the Islamic banking community after the bank allegedly rejected a cheque because it was “non-halal”. The bank has clarified that the rejection was purely due to a technical reason, as the name of the payee isn’t the same as the name registered in the system. The cheque was meant for a donation for the beautification programme of a cemetery.
Former PM Najib Razak officiated the 2021 World Chinese Economic Forum (WCEF) yesterday, which was held at Sheraton Hotel, PJ (Historical significance: The venue of Langkah Sheraton). WCEF is a one-day event organised to discuss the world’s future with China leading the way, attended by 250 delegates.
WCEF chairperson, Cheah Chyuan Yong said the invitation was made to Najib because of his commitment to Malaysia-China bilateral relations and the former PM’s conviction by the High Court was not considered by the forum organisers - they seem to have no qualms with this forum being associated with a high-profile criminal.
Credit reporting agency CTOS Digital Bhd has proposed to acquire a 49% stake in fintech specialist Juris Technologies Sdn Bhd for RM205.8 mil, valuing it at RM420 mil, making it the group’s largest-ever acquisition since its inception.
The acquisition is expected to be completed by Q1 2022. CTOS Digital plans to undertake a private placement of new shares up to 10% of its current 1.1 bil outstanding shares and also bank borrowing to fund the purchase. CTOS current market cap stands at RM3.87 bil.
Property developer Malton Bhd said it is in talks to sell Pavilion Bukit Jalil Mall to Pavilion Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT). Both organisations share a common chairman - Desmond Lim Siew Choon. No price tag was disclosed.
Pavilion Bukit Jalil Mall is located within the 50-acre Bukit Jalil City, a development under Malton and has approximately 1.8 mil sq feet of retail space. Pavilion REIT’s portfolio comprises of Pavilion KL Mall, Intermark Mall, Da Men Mall, Elite Pavilion Mall and Pavilion Tower. Malton and Pavilion REIT market cap stands at RM258.8 mil and RM3.87 bil respectively.
If you are looking to invest in properties, REIT is a good asset to consider as you are able to own quality properties that are professionally managed (not financial advice). Learn more about REIT here.
AirAsia Group Bhd’s RM975 mil cash call through redeemable convertible unsecured Islamic debt securities (RCUIDS) was undersubscribed by 14.87%, with 944.94 mil RCUIDS of 1.11 bil being subscribed. The balance unsubscribed will be taken up by its joint underwriters, RHB Investment Bank and Kenanga Investment Bank.
AirAsia’s 2 largest shareholders, Tony Fernandes and Kamarudin Meranun via their 50-50 jointly-owned special purpose vehicle Sky Accord Sdn Bhd have fully subscribed to 343.03 mil RCUIDS, representing 26.4% of the total available for subscription, forking out RM257.4 mil.
5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎
British luxury department store chain Selfridges has been sold to Thai retailer, Central Group and an Austrian property firm, Signa Group. The deal is said to be worth about £4 bil (USD5.4 bil), according to BBC. The Weston family bought Selfridges in 2003 for nearly £600m, a decent ROI of 566%. Signa and Central will take over 18 of the 25 stores, while the remaining seven stores will remain in the ownership of the Weston family.
Beijing-based Baidu downplayed expectations by noting how many aspects of its metaverse app, XiRang weren’t yet up to par. Ma Jie, a vice president at Baidu, said it would take another six years before the company could fully deliver its metaverse.
Kopi Kenangan is the first unicorn in the food and beverage category in Southeast Asia, after successfully raising USD96 mil (RM402 mil) in the first closing of a Series C funding. Founded in 2017, Kopi Kenangan is one of Indonesia’s fastest-growing retail F&B chains and now has a valuation of more than USD1 bil. Having served 40 mil cups of coffee in the last 12 months, the F&B chain aims to serve 5.5 mil cups per month in 1QFY22.
The highly anticipated CES tech conference in January 2022 may be empty as more than 40 companies, including Google, Intel, Meta, and Amazon, have pulled out of attending the conference in person as Covid-19 continue to surge across the US. Instead, they would attend the event in some capacity virtually.
Three former SpaceX engineers have created a machine that can make a pizza every 45 seconds. Benson Tsai, CEO of Stellar Pizza, scooped up more than 23 former SpaceX employees to build an automated, touchless pizza-making machine that fits into the back of a truck. The robotic restaurant is opening in spring next year.
The James Webb Space Telescope has left the earth, headed to an outpost 1.5 mil kilometres (KMs) from the earth. The telescope intends to show humans what the Universe looked like even closer to its birth nearly 14 billion years ago. The telescope’s mirror measures 6.5 metres (21 feet) in diameter — three times the size of the Hubble's mirror and is made of 18 hexagonal sections.
It is so large that it had to be folded to fit into the rocket.
Jasmine Technology Solution Pcl saw its share price surge nearly 7,000% YTD, the most among global tech companies with a market value of at least $2 billion. The major contributing factor — the company’s plans to expand into Bitcoin mining. Even Chairman Soraj Asavaprapha was surprised by the rally.
6. FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE 👁👁
Photo-op is for boomers
You are special for who you are
A Nasi Lemak themed Christmas tree from the Embassy of France in Malaysia