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Iris' turn, after MyEG?

Publish date: Sun, 12 Feb 2023, 06:40 PM

KUALA LUMPUR: Iris Corp Bhd may steal the spotlight on Monday after the past four trading days saw MY E.G Services Bhd (MyEG) shares take a beating that shaved the company's market value by RM2.31 billion.

Iris could be staring at a sell-down after moving to dispose of 80 per cent of its stake in a wholly-owned subsidiary that is developing a RM1.12 billion National Integrated Immigration System (NIISe), a project that is being probed for possible abuse of power.

Both Iris and MyEG provide e-services and solutions for the government.

Iris shares had been mildly affected while MyEG suffered a sell-down last week.

This was fuelled by a double dose of bad news that MyEG might lose its immigration concession and that the road tax stickers that it supplies to the Road Transport Department were no longer mandatory for owners of private vehicles.

As MyEG shares plunged to 61 sen last Friday from 96 sen a week earlier, Iris saw its shares come out generally unscathed until last Thursday.

Unlike MyEG which is listed on Bursa Malaysia's Main Market, Iris has its shares quoted on the secondary ACE Market. 

Still, Iris has enough magnets to pique investors' interest given its high-profile business of providing e-services and solutions to various governments including some in Africa.

Iris had on Friday announced that it was selling the 80 per cent stake in Iris Information Technology Systems Sdn Bhd (IITS) for RM70 million to little-known Tass Tech Technologies Sdn Bhd.

News of the disposal came a day after former prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin denied any involvement in the NIISe contract to the firm, for which there had been an open tender.

Muhyiddin said the contract was done in accordance with the government's standard procedures and was supervised by the Finance Ministry and other relevant ministries.

The NIISe was reportedly mooted by Muhyiddin when he was the Home Minister in the Pakatan Harapan government.

This was after the reported RM3.5 billion Sistem Kawalan Imigresen Nasional awarded to Prestariang Bhd, now known as AwanBiru Technology Bhd, was cancelled by him because of high costs.

Last Wednesday, FMT reported that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission was investigating the award of the contract to Muhyiddin's son-in-law Datuk Muhamad Adlan Berhan.

Adlan was named in media reports in 2020 as being linked and possibly a key player in the contract for the NIISe developer.

Iris shares lost 3.57 per cent to close at 14 sen on Friday, giving it a market value of RM440 million. Year-to-date, the stock remained flat at 14 sen.

Investors' eyes will also train on the new majority owner of NIISe.

Questions will be asked on the real reason for Iris to sell the NIISe developer, IITS, to Tass Tech as well as the actual owners of the latter.

In its Bursa filing, Iris said the disposal would enable it to unlock its value of investment in IITS.

In the same filing, the directors of Tass Tech are listed as Raja Muhd Badiuzzaman Raja Chulan and Malisa Mohd Zaki.

Tass Tech is wholly-owned by Tass Tech (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd.

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A threw to B and says it has nothing to do with A anymore.

2023-02-13 10:43

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