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18 Sep 2013 10:45

(Sept. 18): The initial public offering of Westports Malaysia Sdn., the main terminal operator at one of the country’s biggest ports, is poised to raise as much as 2.03 billion ringgit ($626 million), said two people with knowledge of the matter.

Shareholders including billionaire Li Ka-Shing’s Hutchison Port Holdings Ltd. are expected to sell 813.2 million shares for 2.30 ringgit to 2.50 ringgit apiece, the people said, asking not to be named as the process is private.

The IPO will be Malaysia’s biggest this year, surpassing the $324 million sale of long-haul budget carrier AirAsia X Bhd. in June, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. First-time offers have raised $1.1 billion this year 1 in Kuala Lumpur, down from $5.3 billion in the same period in 2012, the data show.

Westports Executive Chairman G. Gnanalingam couldn’t be immediately reached when phoned at his office for comment today. Malaysia’s Star newspaper reported the price range earlier today, citing an unidentified person.

Westports, with almost 4,000 employees, has a 69 percent share of container volume at Port Klang, with six terminals and the potential to build another three, according to its website. Led by Chief Executive Officer Ruben Emir Gnanalingam, it handled container throughput of 6.9 million 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) last year, the company said.

Malayan Banking Bhd., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Credit Suisse Group AG are among banks arranging the IPO. Prime Minister Najib Razak will attend the release of Westports’ listing prospectus tomorrow, according to an e-mailed media invitation yesterday.

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