Penang tunnel-highways mega project: Little-known Ewein in the news

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Little-known Ewein Bhd is making the news in the business press. If the reports are to be believed, the firm is on the verge of landing a major contract relating to the Penang tunnel-highways project.

With all the chatter in recent days, the share price of Ewein, which is involved in precision sheet metal fabrication and plastic injection moulding, has soared:

Up, up and away….

Similarly for the Ewein warrants:

The Business Star reports how it believes the firm is linked to the Penang highway-tunnel project.

The firm made a profit before tax of RM7.5m on the back of revenue of RM86.0 in 2012.

There has been a lot of movement in the warrants since January 2013 involving major shareholders culminating in a disposal of 1000000 warrants on 27 June at a transacted price of RM0.131:

Ewein change in shareholdings

Who is behind Ewein? The major shareholders at 12 April 2013 are as follows:

Ewein shareholders April 2013

Ewe Swee Kheng, a major shareholder who founded Ewein Bhd, is described by Business Week as follows:

Dato’ Swee Kheng Ewe has been the Managign Director at Ewein Berhad since January 11, 2008. Dato. Ewe is the Founder of the Ewein Berhad. Prior to establishing the Ewein Berhad, he started his first business under Audio Tech Industries Sdn Bhd in 1989, which is engaged in the manufacturing of speaker grilles for the consumer electronics market. In 1990, he established PPISB to design and fabricate precision moulds, tools and dies for the sheet metal fabrication industry. During the same year, he established TASB as a pioneer in precision sheet metal fabrication under MIDA’s promoted industry. Dato. Ewe was appointed as a director for various companies namely, Vivani Sdn Bhd (the franchisee of Versace), Ewein Holdings Sdn Bhd (the developer for the Palazzo, Penang) and Ewein Winery (M) Sdn Bhd. He is also the committee member of the Penang Chinese Chamber of Commerce (“PCCC”), PCCC Charity Fund Standing Committee and the director of Penang Han Chiang Associated Chinese Schools Association. He serves as a Director at Ewein Berhad.

On 30 April, the Board of Directors of Ewein Berhad announced that the firm intends to seek its shareholders’ approval for proposed amendments to the Articles of Association of the company at its coming AGM.

On 1 July, the company announced that Zarul Ahmad Mohd Zulkifli, has been appointed director of Ewein’s wholly owned subsidiary, Ewein Land Sdn Bhd.

That’s the same Zarul who is the chairman of Consortium Zenith BUCG Sdn Bhd, which was chosen to undertake the RM6.3bn tunnel-highways project.

Ewein Bhd describes Zarul as follows:

He has previously served in various senior positions including Company Secretary of Mobil Oil Malaysia Sdn Bhd, General Manager of Corporate Affairs in Rakyat Merchant Bankers Berhad, Executive Deputy Chairman of Balak Makmur Sdn Bhd, Executive Chairman of Sparkle Option Sdn Bhd, Chairman of Isonet Sdn Bhd, Corporate Advisor of Titian Upaya Sdn Bhd, Director of Four Season Berhad and various private limited companies. He is currently a Chairman of Consortium Zenith BUCG Sdn Bhd, a Director of Formis Network Services Sdn Bhd, which is a subsidiary of Formis Resources Berhad and a Director of CRCC Malaysia Berhad. He is not a Director of any other public company.

Why is Zarul now a director of Ewein Land? What’s up?

The Star report says:

Under the agreement, the state will pay for the cost of construction via 110 acres of reclaimed land in Penang.

It is understood that Ewein, as a contractor, could be entitled to some of this.

No doubt things will get clearer in coming days. There could be a lot more wheeling and dealing going on behind the scenes.

I also find it intriguing that the BN is suddenly praising the tunnel project.

To me, this tunnel project is more about Big Business than providing a long-term solution for the congestion problem in Penang. If we are really serious about the congestion problem, why is it we are still waiting for the Penang Island Local Plan – five years after it was approved by the MPPP in 2008?

What do you think?

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Paragione Loh - Accenture

Those that are planning to purchase a house in Penang Island are hoping that the prices would drop so that they can afford to purchase it. After they had purchased the house they would hope that the prices would rise, and would not drop. Those that are planning to sell their houses to ‘upgrade’ to a bigger house would hope that the house they are planning to sell would not drop in prices or they would ask for sky high prices. They would then complain about the high prices of the ‘upgraded’ house they are planning to buy. So, do… Read more »

tunglang

We are basically kia su – wanting high prices when selling, low prices to buy. This is normal but what is abnormal or manipulated is forever sky-high or always depressively low like our average gaji, so when prices are not behaving normal like the present Penang Island house prices, we should not be fooled by market dynamics nor complacent but pressure the relevant authorities to intervene. Bank Negara move to curb pre-approved housing loan by crocodile-tearing banks-in-cohort-with developers is one God-sent answer to our plight at the mercy of uncontrollable greed of developers, richie speculators & good-news property gurus. The… Read more »

Ong Eu Soon

why companies without the relevant expertise and experience rushing for the tunneling project? The only explanation is the profit must be exorbitant and lucrative enough for one to take such a huge risk. Lim Guan Eng when questioned why the sudden price hike for the project insisted that it is a typo error and labelled me as anti-pr fellow without the gut to answer my query and call for independent cost estimation for the projects . Read my article, Actions Needed on Scandalous Cost Hike on Tunnel, at http://eusoon.blogspot.com/2013/03/actions-needed-on-scandalous-cost-hike.html

Reflections

Promoting your blog as usual. Shame on you.

Ong Eu Soon

Welcome to the world of fools. With contractors know nut about tunneling, undertaking the massive infrastructure project, you can guess what kind of direction we are heading. Lim Guan Eng said that the state has nothing to do with this development. Is this the correct attitude of a state government that professed to practice the principle of competency, accountability and transparency? How long would you like to tolerate with this tiga suku mentality?

mamapapa's boy-boy

Welcome Kourts providing weekly installment plan; allowing me to own Samsung S3 mini not to boost my ego at Chung Ling BUT to enable me to socialise otherwise just a thorn among the roses …. aint hav a BMW but RM250 mthly installment my mamapapa can afford a Saga a family of 5 of us can rotate sharing…….

tunglang

Hi mamapapa’s boy-boy. Sometimes, we need to have essential ‘things’ for a right purpose like as you said a smart phone for socialising (among friends & potential networks). I don’t know much of what is shared among students thro messaging, Facebook, Twitter, but I do know that they connect for school works, games & school activities update. Some even connect with teachers. And sharing a family car though can be quite inconvenient at times is one way to save & stretch the much needed family income. Kudos to your mama & papa for an early teen-life financial management training. Btw,… Read more »

jenson free school alumni

Not to show off in Penang unless you are tychoon like JLow and to save blood sweat hard earned ringgit for rainy days.
All the regulars in anilnetto.com should agree that rosy days (high income nation) ahead promised by BN may not be a reality so don’t waste on luxury wants.
Once a while StarryBuckish indulgence is OK but usually i go for simple kopi-o be i at Ah Pek kopitiam or at Pakcik’s stall.

gary

GenY need to flash their wealth to attract the attention of potential spouse. Maybe tunglang’s son has the inherited charm of sweet talking, so no need for BMW?

GK

Why implicate BN when the tunnel is entirely Dap state gomen initiative ??? Are you trying to rewrite the history ???

rajraman666

GK,
You can’t criticize Penang Government,

rajraman.Once anyone criticize the god send Government of Penang you credit rating negative.It’s shows Malaysian not matured enough when we tell the truth.

singham777

Ask intelligent questions and get Penang gomen to respond accordingly.
Be transparent ourselves and not indulge in ego-boosting commentary and blame for no relevant answers.

Eu Soon and Gerakan K get thumbs down of the time becoz they simply don’t know how to position themselves unlike tunglang whose rantings make more sense though irritating sometimes yet they reach the senses of the public.

Reflections

Yang,

Well, we are still waiting – no signs of any such queries on the Bursa website.

Perhaps if you or Anil are running Bursa, a prompt query will be the order of the day or maybe, I am being too harsh. For all we know, Bursa can only type with two fingers !!!

bruno

Let the mice play while the cats are making hay.

Wendy

Anil

The household debt in Malaysia is among the highest in the world.
Perhaps you can kick start a new discussion on “Are Malaysians living beyond their means?”

http://www.thestar.com.my/News/Nation/2013/06/16/More-living-beyond-means-Malaysians-getting-into-debt-to-sustain-lavish-lifestyles.aspx

Young people are borrowing money (via instalment) to buy smartphones, while their parents are taking up loans for houses and cars…. Can’t people live comfortably withintheir means? If these items that borrowed money to buy are basic necessities, then our government must be failing the rakyat?

riz

The problem if affordability is no longer an issue for young people who has accustomed to debt as w means to bring instant gratification. They started drinking Starbuck coffee from allowances from parents who may not even dare to step into such hip coffee joints due to high price. Now people can pay installment as low as RM50 a month for the latest smartphones. They will develop expensive taste as habit that is procured via future earnings. There is no longer a distinction between needs and wants.

tunglang

riz, it’s an ongoing paradigm shift of urban lifestyle, mass [email protected] lowest costs & inequitable income distribution (skewed towards the rich & wealthy 1%) that brought about the instant gratification idea into economies & businesses of nations. Marketing practices feverishly worship the golden rule of lifestyle selling to the unsatisfied ego with surreal branding, idols & social peer ‘cool’ behaviours that shames the have nots in places as social & public as the Facebook. Soon the world will revert back to the dark ages of slavery unseen since the days of African slaves sold to rich colonialist Americans & Europeans.… Read more »

Vijay

Malaysia will soon face a perfect economic storm as the following is taking shape:
1) slowdown in the Chinese economy,
2) plunging commodity prices
3) looming end of US “QE3” quantitative easing

Better clear your debt fast and do not take on another loan for your 2nd or 3rd property as ‘investment’!!!!.

Yang

Yes Vijay, Your are right.
I am selling off another property. It has become much too tight for me now.

tunglang

Good News: Bank Negara clamps down on pre-approved housing loans, mortgages, personal loans http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/bank-negara-clamps-down-on-pre-approved-housing-loans-mortgages/ The happy days of false perception of personal spending power without the real cash to earn is near. The O’Blady banks, greedy-money-not-enough developers & irresponsible property gurus will see the dark clouds looming ahead. People who have no financial ability to purchase or the need to acquire ‘excesses’ lifestyle beyond the real means in such Serengeti Property Chase should by now ‘wake up’ to the surreal rainy-green horned wildebeest spending spree egged on at property sales booths with ease of purchase & ‘happy days’ advanced bookings… Read more »

Frugal GenY

Unfortunately not many people have the frugal mentality like Mr tunglang (Baby Boomer generation?) in the days of commercialization where branded stuff are appealing to those Gen Ys who could not afford but wanting to own to boost their ego and cool factor. Young people are changing handphones so often to keep up with the latest release of OS and features. Taking loans is a norm from young and you cannot blame the banks if there is no demand. They will then ‘upgrade’ to borrow money for their cars and homes as they start their working life! Anil ought to… Read more »

tunglang

Frugal GenY. Just to share this excess (lack of moderation or outrageous display of wealth) which my son told me this afternoon. A Chung Ling High School student (GenZ?) drove his branded BMW to flash (ostentatious stylishness or display of wealth) at his schoolmates. Wanting emotionally of such “Wow” factor, don’t you think this young dependant (on pocket money) should learn to control his/her ego? A cautious richie parent would never allow his children to display such wanton (deliberate show of wealth) in the face of possible kidnapping & ransom so common in today’s vulnerable society of instant flashy display… Read more »

Roy

This is a good topic that deserve more discussion.
Anil should shift the comments to a new column to generate more feedback on household debt. I believe the interest rate will go up soon and this could be a beginning of of the end of property bubble.

Josiah

anil,

when will you start a column for discussion on household debt?

I am waiting to give my views.

Reflections

If it’s all in the press and given the massive price hike, shouldn’t Bursa be querying the company ?

And how about the SC?

Yang

Reflection. Bursa will definitely write a letter and query on the unusual movement of the share prices. As usual Ewein just all Bursa company will give the usual typical answer.