Rice noodle chain aims to soak up $1.4b

Finance | Victor Zhong and Bloomberg 23 Sep 2021

Rice noodle chain operator Tam Jai International kicks off book building today to raise up to nearly HK$1.4 billion through a share sale with a minimum investment of HK$4,212.

It plans to offer 335 million shares, of which 10 percent are for the Hong Kong public offering, with an indicative price range of HK$3.33 to HK$4.17.

Of the net proceeds, 57.4 percent will be used for the expansion of the restaurant network in Hong Kong, mainland China, Singapore, Japan and Australia, and 9.4 percent of funds raised will be used for the expansion of the central kitchen in Hong Kong and the establishment of new central kitchens in the mainland, Singapore and Australia.

Meanwhile, 10.5 percent is planned for the refurbishment of restaurants and enhancement of operating equipment. The rest is for upgrading the information and technology infrastructure, international brand building and new market entry promotions, as well as general corporate purposes and working capital.

The group plans to open 38 new restaurants in Hong Kong, 71 in the mainland, 24 in Singapore, 25 in Japan and 15 in Australia from this year to 2024. It operates a total of 156 restaurants so far.

In other news, GLP, a private equity-backed logistics operator and investor, plans to raise as much as US$2.5 billion (HK$19.5 billion) for a new fund, betting that Chinese consumer spending will underpin demand for modern warehouses, Bloomberg reported.

The Singapore-based asset manager said capital raised for GLP China Logistics Fund III, its third fund focusing on logistics in Asia's biggest economy, totaled US$1.75 billion at the first close last week, said Teresa Zhuge, executive vice chairman of its China operation. In China, GLP develops and manages modern warehouses across 68 cities, and leases to customers such as express courier SF Holding and logistics services provider Best Inc. The new fund will keep focusing on such assets, especially those in first-tier cities and economic hubs, in the next two to three years, Zhuge said in an interview.

Separately, online classifieds business Carousell is considering all options, including an initial public offering in the US via merging or a special purpose acquisition company, to grow its business, co-founder and chief executive Quek Siu Rui said in an interview.

Carousell got US$100 million in a round last week at a US$1.1 billion valuation. It was said to be considering going public by merging with a special purpose acquisition company earlier this year.

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