Friday 01 Dec 2023
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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 15): Sovereign fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd-owned Kidzania Singapore owes S$53.4 million to more than 1,000 parties including businesses and government agencies in the island city-state.

In a report today, the Singapore Business Times (BT) said of the total that the family attraction, which is now under liquidation owes, some S$50 million is listed as claims by Themed Attractions Resorts & Hotels (TARH) — the leisure and tourism arm of Khazanah — which owns an 80% stake in Rakan Riang, the joint venture company behind KidZania Singapore.

BT said Boustead Curve, a wholly-owned subsidiary Boustead Holdings Bhd, holds the remaining 20% stake in Rakan Riang.

The report said the rest of the debts are owed to customers, businesses and government agencies in Singapore, including the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), the Sentosa Development Corp (SDC) and the Ministry of Education (MOE), according to a list of creditors seen by BT.

It added that SDC, owed S$207,400 in rent for KidZania's premises on Sentosa Island, would only say it was "in touch with the liquidators".

Meanwhile, STB, owed S$27,400, said it was unable to share details due to "business confidentiality".

Additionally, BT said MOE's sports and recreation club is understood to be owed S$62,300 for corporate passes purchased from KidZania.

The report added that when KidZania opened in Singapore in 2016, it recorded S$15 million in revenue and a loss after tax of S$8.3 million that year.

It said since then, KidZania’s revenues have hovered around that figure, while losses have widened.

Last year, KidZania generated S$14.4 million in revenue but made a loss after tax of S$28 million, it said.

The total value of its assets has also diminished, from S$48.9 million in 2016 to S$5.9 million as at Aug 24, according to the statement of affairs presented at the creditors' meeting.

Fuelling some creditors' frustration is what they see as a lack of clarity in the process towards recouping their money, which they were told could take one-and-a-half to two years at best.

Khazanah declined to comment when approached by BT, the report said.

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