Posted by: donmihaihai | April 6, 2015

Micro Mechanics 7 April 2015

If nothing goes wrong, FY2015 will easily be the best year for Micro Mechanics.

What is good about Micro Mechanics?

Buying a growing industry(Semicon) without a need to choose the winner. Average ROE of 16% for past 15 years(FY2000 to FY2014) or 25% on cashflow basis. All the while the company is having excess cash and will be better if not for trying to grow another business CMA.

Pretty good chance that the future will be the same for Micro Mechanics – up and down but above average return on over a longer period. And this is for semiconductor tooling business.

For CMA, it is tough. Not my first time saying it and won’t be my last time. Management sound positive on it on the most recent AGM minutes which make me think that it is turning. But let face it, in order for it to produce the same kind of return as semiconductor tooling, it need more volumes, which mean Assets turnover need to be higher. No trick. 24/7 got to work very well. Which is why the management is keen on it. Bigger market.

But just like semiconductor tooling, the harder it is, the more competitive advantages it will enjoy when the company is able to break the code and do well. Can Micro Mechanics breaks that code?

Owned the shares for over 10 years and my last purchase was during the crisis. Despite all the dividends, my return is just So-so. Rightfully so. Because I did not buy cheap enough and the company is not growing fast enough and neither has the share price gone crazy. A lesson on paying a fair price for a good business that has lot of bumps.

The next 10 years look better than the last 10 years. Better if they broke the code of CMA.

Posted by: donmihaihai | April 4, 2015

Hong Kong Land 4 April 2015

Re- look into Hong Kong Land and what are important.

USD28billion of investment properties. All are top grade in the respective countries.

USD3billion of development properties. Trading stocks. Require billions to develop and some will last for another 5 to 10 years.

USD4.3billion of debts at subsidiaries level. Low cost debt with a good portions due 10 years out. Debts level in main JVs are not high as shown in FY2013 AR and it is repaying. Hong Kong Land share of debts in main JVs was likely to be 35% of USD3.5billion.

So Debt to total Assets should be around 25%. Perhaps a little more due to the nature of development properties. Interest coverage is around 8 to 10X. Most will be covered by income from rental. Debts on development properties is abit tricky due to the nature of cash flow which make a little more complex with different ways of selling houses in different countries. Thing to note is majority of these land banks are undeveloped and unsold. Not going to guess how much it will take to develop them and what kind of profits Hong Kong Land will earned as these are going to work out in the next 5 to 10 years. Most will be self funding after initial capital from Hong Kong Land. Well this is the nature of development properties.

Main Investment properties coming online In the next 4 years

Jakarta Land – WTC 3(50%)

Phnom Penh – Exchange Square (100%)

Beijing – WF Central(90%)

Beijing – CBD (30%)

These will not move the investment properties needle much and most likely just north of USD30billion by using the current value of current investment properties.

Together with the downturn of properties cycles in Asia, Hong Kong Land growth will not be excited.

I do care about growth. But stay away from companies that grow at any cost which also mean companies that do not have the capacities to grow that fast. Hong Kong Land has the capacities to grow.

It was just in Hong Kong in 1990. Now it has added Singapore, Jakarta, Bangkok, Hanoi, Macau and Cambodia in term of investment properties. And it look like Hong Kong Land is walking faster, of course the capacities to walk faster is there as well.

Let hope that there is no major issuing of shares in the future. At this stage, getting an investment property wrong or development property wrong is not as painful as getting a major acquisition wrong or do a major issuance of shares and produce return way less of it.

Posted by: donmihaihai | May 3, 2014

3 years later.

Got into Haw Par Corporation three years ago base on this

At $6.00, return from operating businesses will be around 3%, assuming return from UIC and UOL to be 7% of their equity while UOB at 10% then return on will be at the range of 13% to 15%. The businesses in Haw Par Corp include outstanding businesses like Tiger Balm and Underwater World that have problem growing and average businesses in bank and property that has all kind of opportunities to grow.

Three years later, the weather is good so let me try to figure out what is the fair value of Haw Par Corporation.

UOB NBV @ 31/12/13 = 15.36
No. of shares = 67,952,169
1.8X NBV = 27.43
Total value = 1,863,929,995

UIC NBV @ 13/12/13 = 3.61
No. of shares = 67,558,000
1X NBV = 3.61
Total value = 243,884,380

UOL NBV @ 13/12/13 = 8.77
No. of shares = 41,428,805
1X NBV = 8.77
Total value = 363,330,620

Hua Han Bio
Total value as per BV at Haw Par = 115,845,000

Investment Properties
@ full value = 222,139,000

Healthcare products
@ 15X PBT = 388,000,000

3.5M X 5 years = 17,500,000

Cash plus deferred tax liabilities less 50M for operations and 40M for dividends

Total Value of Haw Par
= 1,864 + 244 + 363 + 116 + 222 + 388 + 18 + 172
= 3,387 M
Total no. of shares – 218,697,173
Per share = $15.49

No trick here. Getting $15.49 just by putting up some fair but not excessive valuation on these stocks. Call it sum of the parts method if you want. Is using NBV for UIC and UOL aggressive? Don’t think so. Neither do I think using 1.8X NBV for UOB is aggressive too. And with UOB making up more than 50% of the total valuation it is worthwhile to think what is the real valuation of UOB.

Really doubt that Haw Par Corporation will trade at $15 but well it has always been in stealth mode. Not just under radar stock but Haw Par is a stealth growth stock as well. Like company like that.

Posted by: donmihaihai | April 13, 2014

Selling and the outlook is bad for a lazy person

LHT Holdings Limited.

100% sold.

Reasons for purchase were simple. LHT Holdings Limited was a cigar butt approach. The company is recovering from a long down turn and is beginning to invest in their business after lacking for years. Should sell earlier but got catch up by the improving of their numbers. Nevertheless, LHT Holdings Limited is my best cigar butt with a gain of about 100% in 3 years.

ARA Asset Management

99% Sold.

Left with some odd lot and going to dump them aside for annual report.

ARA is changing. Just when more and more bees are surrounding ARA, the company is getting more and more risky. In short the seek for growth is putting this company into lot of risk. Would love ARA that is growing at a single digit.


90% sold.

What is ride! Started reading Sarin when share price dropped below $1 after a very good IPO. First purchase made around $0.60 and last purchase below $0.30 during crisis. Share price did not stop dropping until just below $0.10. Now Sarine is trading at around $2.50 post bonus issue. From a paper lost of >80% to a multi baggers.

What change in the business? Of course Sarine is getting more recurring income but recurring or not, this company is still a big fish in a small pond and look like it is getting a little bigger than before.

Still like the company but not share price.

Straco Corporation

Sold some.

Business is still the same but valuation is getting rich.

Outlook is bad because the price is rich and the pool of companies I am looking at is small because I am lazy. Selling some of the best companies I ever owned is telling because it is almost certain that there isn’t any chance of buying them soon. They are the angels flying high in the sky. I don’t buy angel. I buy throw away.

I see many angels up in the sky. I see throw away too but their businesses are not as good. I must throw away my laziness and start looking at company that are neither angel or throw away. They might be the next throw away and some of them have better businesses.

Posted by: donmihaihai | March 15, 2014

Once a blue moon on HongKong Land Holdings Limited

HongKong Land is the largest property company (including REIT) listed in SGX in term of market capitalisation, total assets and Net Asset Value. A well run property part of Jardine Matheson group that does not keep hitting the news maybe because there is basically no hot “news” for the media or chasing investors.

Getting to know HongKong Land is easy.

Property is about location? Well it has a “to die for” of 12 prime commercial properties and a luxury hotel in Central, Hong Kong. These are carried at about US$22 billion on the B/S. In Singapore, HongKong Land has 1/3 interest in ORQ, MBFC and full interest in ORL. MBFC is the new CBD area of Singapore and ORQ is right beside it and even ORL is circling the new CBD area too. It goes without saying these are grade A again. It is unlikely that HongKong Land is able to replicate these commercial properties in the two countries easily. Hopefully I am wrong. Beside these two financial centres, HongKong Land is in Jakarta, Bangkok, Hanoi, Macau, China and Phnon Penh. It is trying to develop prime commercial properties in the CBD areas of these. Is HongKong Land getting the location right? I don’t know but they are in better position to know.

Is Residential development about land banking? I don’t know. Maybe Quek Land bank will know. But a manufacturer will reduce or stop producing product when there is excess in the market and when the cost is low, margin will be huge. HongKong Land is doing pretty well in Singapore on residential properties through MCL Land and trying to establish itself in certain cities in China. And yes, it has a “to die for” land bank too, especially in China. It is doing developments in Indonesia and Philippines too but too early to say these are one off or trying to be a developer in these countries.

Lastly, it has a “to die for” B/S. Not just about low debts how debts is being managed.

What is bad about HongKong Land?

Its “crown Jewel”. Those US$22 billion of commercial properties. No not that I am worry about the capitalisation rates are too low. It is just too big, all new developments in Jakarta, China and Phnon Penh will hardly move the needle plus it is at the end of a huge property cycle for many countries which mean growth will be slow.

And this is what I like about the management. I might be wrong. Facing the situation of having huge “crown jewel” with little debts will lead most management to go out shopping like crazy. Targeting certain percentage of properties from which country or which segment by certain year. Sound familiar? This is what many are doing but not HongKong Land as far as I am tell. It is using its “crown jewel” to plant more “crown jewel”. Certain percentage is a result not a target. Only gear up when there is a need not to target a certain level of gearing.

Question. What will happen if HongKong Land decided to be like majority? Spending 10 to 20 billion on shopping trips. i.e. gear up.

Lastly will be the question most will ask. REIT and recycle capital, will HongKong Land do it? I don’t know and I don’t think it will. And I am not a fan of REIT and recycle capital. It only make sense if that is a lousy asset and the timing must be right. Which management will tell you that they are a lousy stock operator or property operator? As far as I can see, companies doing recycling of capital is not doing as well as the others. Check the numbers and you will be surprise.

Posted by: donmihaihai | April 15, 2013

Straco – Annual report and QUESTIONS

I am a lazy person. Usually I don’t use a pen to take down note or spreadsheet for all kind of computation while reading annual report. Reading annual report is an easy task. Usually the number just flow so do the story unless I am reading a complicated company.

If I have to pick up a pen, something is wrong. This year the candidate is Straco.


Straco is doing more of the same thing as last year. Things that I don’t like regardless of their business. It is not that the business is doing extraordinary well. It is doing well enough. Maybe it is because of being well enough which is why maybe money is leaking away from backdoor.

Anyway share price is moving upward, bees are crowding Straco. Straco is at best maybe trading at fair value. A simple question like how much money can the company generates from two aquariums with remaining lease period of 22 to 25 years. And what is the history of China government allowing extension or grant of new lease with little cost? And what is the cost of re-building aquariums of the same size in the future. Go bees, I am counting on you.

Dividends to NCI

Dividends in Cashflows statement does not tie with Statement of changes in equity. Why?

Office like Palace?

Majority of Capex was spend in Office  for last two years. Those were in China because Singapore office is getting poorer. What are these for? Is Straco adding staffs like crazy or the royal family is working in royal office.

Fishes and marine livestock

Are they super fishes? Addition is minimum and disposal is non existent.

Impairment in subsidiary, Construction in progress, unutilised tax losses and disposal of land use right

Relating to Chao Yuan Ge Development? Still unknown currently?

Other receivables

Because of accrued interest income? If not then there is a problem

Stock options

Board target is for employees of the Straco to hold up to 10% of the company by 2018. Who are these employees? 38% and 18% of all options granted went to Royal family and its gang and Royal family respectively. Shares purchased is good only when all shareholders get the benefit not when money is flowing to the small inner group.

A short post. Will talk down other companies soon.

Posted by: donmihaihai | January 1, 2013

Market, activities and comments

STI returned almost 20% in 2012. It was good. Surprise? Depend on who you are asking. But as I am writing this, something hit me that headline news, especially during year end, done lot of bad to ‘investor’ than they realised, maybe more so to so call asset allocator.


It should be called a year of inactivity(is there such a word?)

For Unit Trust using CPF money, I had done what many will deem as horror. Made few purchases of Europe and Japan as markets dipped before September. Small amounts, wanted to buy more but despite having loads of horrible news, markets refused to move. Here lay another ‘investor’ caged by market news.

In 2013, my thinking is to slowly sell off my Thailand UT if current market momentum continues and Eastspring Investments Global Basics Fund as it really disappointing. For purchase? I have no idea.

In stock investing, other than purchasing a small stake in Willas-Array Electronics (Holdings) Limited and lucky gotten a 10% dividend (joining the hip of dividend investment), my activity was basically zero. Willas Array belong to what I call trading company and base on past results(11 years), its ROE was about 10%, dividend payout and so call free cash flow was about 4.5 to 5%. At 0.5XBV it becomes 20% and 9 to 10%. Pretty good for an average business. I am not worry about it leverage as it is tied with business volume but shout to me when there is a trend of increasing borrowing without the same increase in sale volume. Anyway this is a business of scale, market reach and inventories management.

Purchased quite a few trading and distributing companies in the last few years. There are Asia Enterprise, YHI International, Willas-Array Electronics and even LHT. There are average businesses while management varies. The return from holding to them is mixed or rather I should say poor which is why I am still holding on to them. They are still being disliked by the market. This is the place I like to search to stock.

Sometime back in 2nd half of 2011, property stock was dumped. Unlike smallish trading and distributing segment, property is a heavyweight in the exchange. I remember I could walk in and purchase stock like Hong Kong Land, UOL, SingLand, Hotel properties, SC Global, Wing Tai, etc at price which I call cheap. I did and rewarded with return from Hong Kong Land, SC Global and somehow Wheelock Properties. The reward is one of the fastest.

What next? Other than looking for quality company in quality industry managed by good management the place to look for is still throwaway. Genting might be interesting because it has lost money for many people. Shipping(other than offshore) might be even better because these companies are not talking about how much profit they generated, they are trying not to goes down.

Posted by: donmihaihai | June 9, 2012

The elephant of CH Offshore

I have not been doing this for a long time,that is to say beware of “that company”. Something is wrong with that company.

This time “That company” is CH Offshore. CH Offshore is having problem of collecting money from a major customer and is forecoming in reporting. It is hard to miss this elephant in the room even if CH Offshore is not commenting on it while reading their quarter reports.

How big is that Elephant? Trade receivables as at 3Q2012 was about US$31M while revenues for 9mth2012 was about US$39M. About 2 years back, trade receivables stood at US$9M with Revenues of US$69M. Do the math, it is simple.

CH Offshore is not a popular stock, but I do see some are going after its clean B/S with load of cash. But what are you doing by not noticing the elephant in the room or rather focusing on the wrong thing. Anyway I have nothing to add on this.

But it is interesting to think about why CH Offshore is having problem with their receivables. That is charterer rate, contract and cyclical nature of the industry.
An offshore vessel has a lifespan of about 25 years.
Offshore industry has a long cycle which mean each vessel has the chance of securing one cycle of good charter rate, I think the maximum are 2 cycles.
Having long term contract at above market rate is good but like buying market bottom, it is only after that we know the rate is good. Still remember the party where the fashion was annoucing how big is the contract and how long is the duration. Where are they now?
The problem CH Offshore is facing look precisely CH Offshore locked in super good rate and their customer is having problem paying at that rate. With that CH Offshore is facing the problem of walking away from the contract or continue.

I continue to be interested in shipping industry. The story of Loews Corporation investment in Diamond Offshore continue to inspire me.

Focus on the right thing.

Posted by: donmihaihai | April 28, 2012

It is all about money

Teh Hooi Ling from BT wrote a good article call ” Pay attention to executive salary plan”.

I think Chairman of Hersing Corporation Harry Chua is expensive but while it is hard to measure, that is the pay for performance and shareholder value he created.

Two Lees of Asia Enterprise is expensive too. But I can still tahan it by saying pay for performance and consistent.

Just when I noticed that the big Lim family of Chip Eng Seng is super good at sharing the available profit, Teh Hooi Ling pointed out an even better player – Hong Fok Corporation.

After a quick look at Hong Fok Corporation, I noticed more than what is printed on the article and missing information in their annual report. I am interested in Shareholding structure, acquisition and disposal and interested person transaction. Add in share option and performance shares for some company. You hear me, Straco Corporation!

Anyway it is all about money.
Let say I own and run a private company(100%) and how should I pay myself yearly? I will pay attention to tax. I will do the best to minimise corporate and personal tax as a whole. If I have a big family, I will do the same for them, divide the pie.
What about if I own and run a public listed company? If it is all about money, the first thing is to know what the percentage of my ownership is. If I own 20% of the company, I get only 20% of declared dividends as there are lots of other shareholders. Why do I want to share with them? If I don’t want to share with them, what can I do? What will you do if you are Cheongs and Lims? Write it down and look for them in the annual report.

Lastly, I will never invest in Hong Fok Corporation as a listed company. Unfortunately as a shareholder in private company? If I am rich enough, I will seek legal way – oppression.

Posted by: donmihaihai | April 1, 2012

To pay for stock?

NTA : 1.52
Low : 1.27 P/NTA : 0.84
High: 2.14 P/NTA : 1.41

NTA : 4.09
Low : 7.02 P/NTA : 1.72
High: 12.18 P/NTA : 2.98

Total Dividends 2002 – 2011 = 3.22
2011 NTA plus total dividends = 7.31
Total annualised return = 19.07%

Stock price 31/12/11 = 9.30
Total Dividends 2002 – 2011 = 3.22
Total return(buy at 1.27) = 28.95%
Total return(buy at 2.14) = 21.69%

Let me do some magic

NTA : 1.52
Low : 2.61 P/NTA : 1.72
High: 4.53 P/NTA : 2.98

NTA : 4.09
Low : 3.44 P/NTA : 0.84
High: 5.77 P/NTA : 1.41

Total return base on NTA plus dividends is still the same

What about stock price plus dividends?
Stock price ((3.44 + 5.77)/2) = 4.61 (P/NTA: 1.13)
Total return(buy at 2.61) : 12.98%
Total return(buy at 4.53) : 6.27%

Let do another magic

NTA : 1.52
Low : 2.61 P/NTA : 1.72
High: 4.53 P/NTA : 2.98

NTA : 4.09
Low : 7.02 P/NTA: 1.72
High: 12.18 P/NTA: 2.98

Total return base on NTA plus dividends is still the same

What about stock price plus dividends?
Total return(buy and sell at same P/NTA : 1.72) : 16.40%
Total return(buy and sell at same P/NTA : 2.98) : 14.56%

What does the above say about Keppel Corp?
Keppel Corp was doing very well from 2002 to 2011
What does it say about price?
– If the company is good, it can save the investor ass even if investor paid a wrong price(not too high of course). Magic no. 1

– Paying at right price for right stock will be wonderful. What is the right price? It happened that stock price of Keppel Corp in whole year of 2002 was right!

– To pay a premium for a stock, the only way to earn good return is the stock must be selling at about the same premium at point of selling. And of course the company must be doing good.

Wrong price for wrong company?
Food Junction generated ROE of 23% to 39% from 2002 to 2007. And if you think paying 3XBV is cheap. What happened after that?

Pteris Global generated ROE of 20% to 37% from 2003 to 2007. And if you think paying 4XNBV is cheap. What happened after that?

Someone might say these are crap companies. But that is by looking back.

Then what to do? I know what I will do for myself. I know what it work for me. I have a simple suggestion but it will not work for many people.

Use a probability chart, outcome chart or whatever it suit you when even you decided to pay for a premium. Go through it and if end results show that favorable result can only happened due to one or two outcomes or small probability, then it is better not to pay for it.

These whole thing require a person not to be hype up on the stock. But telling that to a person who is going to pay a premium is as good as useless. I have done that and I know it.

I have another suggestion. Screen for stocks that are selling at say 3XBV just like we are looking at low valuation stock. And don’t touch them regardless how good they are.

One way to look at thing is to look at your portfolio. Look at the stock valuation, especially at the purchase price. And you should worry about being a hype investor if you have many purchased at a premium.

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