KUALA LUMPUR: Genting Malaysia Bhd has confirmed it is paying US$126 million to buy Jho Low’s seized Equanimity but the casino operator is hardly generous on what exactly it will do with the superyacht.
This has led to a guessing game over Genting Malaysia’s plan for Equanimity, given that the group is not a cruise operator or known as a yacht owner before this.
Genting Malaysia, in its filing to Bursa Malaysia yesterday, offered little on how it plans to optimise the superyacht.
The group said the acquisition would allow it to differentiate itself from its competitors and provide a unique and competitive edge for its premium customers business.
Prof Dr Marco Tieman, chief executive officer of supply chain specialist LLB International, said Genting Malaysia could offer gambling activities on the yacht on international waters for VIPs, an added value to its high end business.
“It could be a wise move for Genting Malaysia,” Tieman said when contacted by the New Straits Times.
Genting Malaysia operates Resorts World Birmingham in the UK, Resorts World Casino New York City and Resorts World Bimini in the Caribbean island, all of which are located near international waters.
Putra Business School business development manager Prof Madya Dr Ahmed Razman Abdul Latiff said the group can transform the yacht into a private and luxurious cruise to travel between resorts that it owns in several cities.
“As a public listed company, Genting Malaysia probably has decided that such acquisition will contribute towards maximisation of its shareholders value and guaranteed to provide favourable return of investment.”
This can be achieved through strategic monetisation of such asset to capture a niche and premium market which definitely will put Genting Malaysia above par of its competitors, he added.
Analyst Nazarry Rosli said Genting Malaysia might be using Equanimity for premium cruise business.
“Genting Malaysia must have had some business plan that can synergise with its existing business. This will help the company to generate more revenue from the acquisition of Equanimity,” he said.
Meanwhile, RHB Research senior research analyst Lee Meng Horng said Putrajaya had arrived at a fair deal to let the vessel go at the price.
He said the government was losing money through maintenance and depreciation while not generating any revenue.
“Based on (the Attorney-General’s Chambers’) statement, there was no one offering any higher,” Lee said, while drawing on the initial plan to sell the yacht for no lesser than US$130 million.
Genting Malaysia shares rose 3.47 per cent or 11 sen to RM3.28 with 5.59 million units traded yesterday.